“Maybe your client is understating his importance.”

Yesterday Dublin High Court rejected an application by Freddie Scappaticci, who denies he was a British army agent within the Provisional IRA known as “Stakeknife”, for a judicial review of the Smithwick Tribunal’s decision to allow witness Kevin Fulton to give evidence from behind a screen – and for a halt in the hearing of that evidence until the matter was resolved to Scappaticci’s satisfaction.

Today, the Smithwick Tribunal continued to hear evidence from Kevin Fulton – a former British army agent also known as Peter Keeley.

And this afternoon Scappaticci’s solicitor asked Judge Peter Smithwick for a second counsel to represent his client.

The BBC report notes the following exchange

Counsel for Mr Scappaticci, Martin O’Rourke, applied for a second counsel for his client – who has denied the allegations made against him

The chairman of the tribunal, Judge Peter Smithwick, said he would consider that request if Mr Scappaticci would agree to give a statement to the tribunal and turn up to give evidence.

“That is being given active consideration by my client,” replied Mr O’Rourke.

And here’s part of Kevin Fulton’s earlier cross-examination by Scappaticci’s legal representative  – from the BBC report.

Mr Fulton was also cross-examined by Martin O’ Rourke, legal counsel for Mr Scappaticci.

“Do you deliberately overstate your own importance,” Mr O’Rourke asked.

“No, I am not as important or unimportant as anyone else” Mr Fulton replied. “Maybe your client is understating his importance.”

During heated exhanges Mr Fulton told Mr Scappaticci’s legal counsel that it was an “actual fact” that your client “is an informer and he is ‘Stakeknife'”.

If Scappaticci does appear at the Tribunal, and it’s still only an ‘if’ at this stage, presumably – given the injunction he secured in 2006, and which was still in force in 2008 – he too will require the use of a screen…

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  • Los Lobos

    There might be more than him who will need the use of a screen if he gets into the witness box and sings like a fat lady! The entire ediface known as “the provos” should be shaking in their boots at the thought of “the scap” settling old scores! He will make the story of the hunger strikers being sold down the river seem like a walk in the park. Those who headed the Provos for the best part of the “troubles” and who now walk the corridors of power stand to lose most as they will be shown to have cynically manipulated their own people for personal gain. Roll the dice Scap, lets see what comes up!

  • Drumlins Rock

    much more likely he will do the old “I know nathing” routine in an attempt to save his skin and show he can be trusted.

  • sliabhluachra

    Los Lobos. As Maxwell Smart might say: very intersting, but you forget one small thing.
    Remember Donaldson, who was photographed with Bobby Sands and between Adams and McGuinness and who fought in the critical Defence of St Matthews which gave birth to the Provo myth. Provo pedigree does not get better than that.
    And yet, the Provos with some input from Adams and McGuinness persuaded him to go to Donegal where he was the softest of soft targets.
    The same two boys smoothed Scap’s escape. They have him snookered and the lie will continue. Stakeknife knows the score: he was made an offer he couldn’t refuse. Dead men tell no tales.

  • sherdy

    After the fairy tales we’ve been hearing all week, what will be said that anyone can believe? Scap may make Kevin Fulton sound like Mother Theresa.

  • Mark

    “No I am not as important or unimportant as anyone else “, Peter Keeley is reported as telling the Smithwick Tribunal today ..

    Reading his book ” Unsung Hero ” ( His publisher must have some sense of humour ) the reader is led to believe that Keeley was in fact one of the top boys , so important in fact that he formed a unit that was responsible for the development of any new weapons .

    He takes credit for the idea behind a flashgun detonator which killed an RUC officer in Newry in 92 . He also implies that he was one of the two gunmen responsible for the death of Eoin Morley .

    He refers to himself as a ruthless robotic IRA operative . This transformation didn’t take place over a couple of years and his handlers had to have known they had given him an ambiguous licence to kill .

    My point is how can this man be taken seriously when he doesn’t even know on whose side he was fighting for ? According to Keeley , he was so far gone , so hardened to barbarism , so de-programmed of natural compassion , none of his actions played on his conscience . How can anyone believe anything this man says now ?

  • Cynic2

    Anyone care to open a book on hs appearance?

  • 241934 john brennan

    Was anyone associated with Connolly House not in the double-agent game? Remember Denis Donaldson (head of SF admim,) Scap (head of internal security), Gerry Adam’s car drivers, and the ‘insiders’ who conspired to insert a 2 meter long listening device into the ceiling – the one that Gerry found and publically carried all the way to Downing Street?

  • Cynic2

    “Gerry found and publically carried all the way to Downing Street?”

    Wasnt it great of him to hand it back in.

    “Was anyone associated with Connolly House not in the double-agent game?”

    Were they colluding with the Brits? Surely not

  • Alias

    Former FRU handler Ian Hurst (Martin Ingram) claims in his submission to the Smithwick Tribunal that “Freddie Scappaticci was Mr Owen Corrigan’s handler.” He also claims that his “friend and colleague”, FRU handler David Moyles, was Scappaticci’s handler.

    If true, that inverts the focus of the Smithwick Tribunal and makes the murders of the two RUC officers an issue of collusion between the British state and PIRA.

    He also claims that it was a regular practice for FRU agents to use PIRA’s intelligence gathering capabilities to obtain information about people rather than to use orthodox channels, as PIRA would get the information much more quickly:

    PIRA would be able to obtain information from driver licensing, social security, councils, utilities far quicker than the FRU – To provide one example – If we wanted to check a southern vehicle owner we had to submit a written request via Military Intelligence Liaison Officer to obtain this information from the RUC – that process could take a week or more? PIRA could do that within hours – Obviously FRU handlers would with one eye on source security request our PIRA agents to obtain this information privately rather that play the long game with the RUC.

    In effect, PIRA’s intelligence/security unit was operating as an adjunct of the British Army; and any Gardai moles or other state employees who were providing information to PIRA were in actuality providing that information to the British state. This is what he tells Smithwick about the role of PIRA’s ISU:

    Briefly the role of the security unit is no different that within the British Army or indeed Irish army:

    a. vetting new members
    b. Investigate compromised operations
    c. Interview suspected members
    d. Remove potential threats
    e. Maintain Intelligence upon units/individuals
    f. Cultivate Intelligence sources

    The alleged Garda moles in Dundalk were controlled by PIRA members who were controlled by the British state.

    The odd aspect about the two murders is why the British state allowed PIRA to murder senior RUC officers when PIRA had only murdered RUC members of low rank prior to that. Was it because the two officers were protesting about a Garda mole that the FRU were de facto controlling via control of his controller?


  • Skinner

    “In effect, PIRA’s intelligence/security unit was operating as an adjunct of the British Army”

    That is a bit of a jump – the facts you state do not necessarily support your conclusion.

    You can make links all over the place but I don’t think they prove ‘control’. My view is that these ‘relationships’ are much more liquid than is often presented. For example, I don’t think the fact that a terrorist routinely supplied information to British Intelligence operatives means that everything that terrorist did subsequently can be attributed to the will of ‘the Brits’. It’s probably a bit more complicated than that.