It looks increasingly like the PSNI have made a very serious miscalculation during an instance of harassing the family of a non-compliant republican. While it is no surprise they would arrest an ex-prisoner who is the RNU prisons spokesperson, targeting his family could backfire spectacularly.
The arrest of lay magistrate Delia Van der Lenden and her retired Dutch naval officer husband seems to echo the lazy harassment many nationalists can easily connect with the attitudes of the old RUC.
Mrs Van der Lenden told the BBC:
We were told they had intelligence that we were members of an illegal organisation namely Óglaigh na hÉireann and had intelligence that we were implicated in that appalling crime in Lagmore where a family was kidnapped.
And she is quoted in the Irish News saying:
There are two possibilities in our case.
Either the police knowingly targeted us for malicious reasons or their intelligence is so bad that they arrested three innocent people
As a Lay Magistrate her potential as a IRA volunteer looks limited and despite being stood down by the Lord Chief Justice while the case is examined her decades long involvement in and support of the British establishment in Ireland is clearly documented – regardless of her son’s political views.
Ordinary Members of the Charity Tribunal
Date – 12 November 2010.
The Lord Chancellor has appointed Paul Artherton, Theresa Donaldson, Delia van der Lenden and Arthur Williamson as Fee Paid Ordinary Members of the Charity Tribunal on 12 November 2010.
She has helped draft the Code of Practice for Ministerial Public Appointments in Northern Ireland as an Assessor for the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments.
As a former Chief Officer of the SHSSC she presented to the Assembly on behalf of all four Health and Social Services Councils on child protection.
She has also sat on DSDs Committee wearing her Director of Childline NI hat.
Seems the PSNI didn’t check who they were about to harass! Whoops.