An interesting interjection by Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams, as the searches and examination of documents and computers seized during the co-ordinated raids in Louth and Armagh yesterday continue… as noted by RTÉ – The Sinn Féin leader, Gerry Adams, has described the man linked to a number of ongoing Garda and PSNI investigations, Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy, as not a criminal, but a good republican and a long-standing supporter of Sinn Féin’s peace strategy. He is also reported to have said that smuggling was wrong and that his party supported the pursuit of criminal assets.. and if I find the actual quotes I’ll post them. Update According to the UTV report the operation was codenamed Achilles. More RTÉ News report has the comments as they were made[RealPlayer video]I’ll just note what Adams actually said about Thomas Murphy –
“Tom Murphy is not a criminal. He’s a good republican. I read his statement after the Manchester raids. I believe what he says. He’s also, and very importantly, a key supporter of the Sinn Féin peace strategy and has been for a very long time.”
Additionally, when asked, by RTÉ’s Tommie Gorman, whether he believes Murphy’s denial of membership of the IRA Army Council, Adams said –
“If he denies being a member of the IRA, then I have to accept that.”
Further Update A longer report of Adams’ comments on RTÉ radio[RealPlayer audio file] in which he criticises the “snide coverage” as well as the manner, of the co-ordinated raids and, interestingly, while disparaging the reports of Thomas Murphy as a “super duper gang leader”, or a godfather figure, and disparaging the reports of individuals exploiting republicans, acknowledges that there are greedy people on all sides.