McConville’s son fears that he or one of his family members “would get shot”.

Two interviews. One with Jean McConville’s son Michael speaking on Good Morning Ulster this morning saying that although he was sure he knew who had killed his mother, he lived in fear of what might happen if he disclosed his suspicions:

Conor Murphy on Nolan later dodged the point:

, , ,

  • Granni Trixie

    Is it not a crime to withhold information about a crime?

    However as I said on another post, victims in NI often exercise a kind of moral authority which I think is the case here and given all the circs don’t expect the police to act.
    Surely there are precedents for how the police proceed with witnesses who feel themselves to be intimidated? Isn’t that why we had Diplock courts?(Re intimidation if jurors) or witnesses are allowed to assume anominity?

  • Ní Dhuibhir

    No chance of anonymity here. While seeking justice might be this family’s quest, I don’t think anyone could argue that delivering it is their responsibility. Trying to compel a child witness who was a victim themselves, 42 years later, would be another form of victimisation.

  • Granni Trixie

    Just been listening to Michael on radio…he’s a star!

  • Charles_Gould

    Granni: he has made a big impact today on many listeners throughout the UK with his interviews.

    I have a lot of respect for him just from this mornings interview.

    After listening to him you just want justice for him and his family – nothing else matters in this.

  • Hold on a minute. He knows who took his mother away to be shot but won’t tell?

  • Charles_Gould

    Yes Ulick. That is what he said. He thinks they would kill him.

  • Charles_Gould

    Thats part of why his interview with the Today programme – which reaches a big audience – was such a moving one. His interview had such a lot of authenticity, I think he was very brave.

  • Granni Trixie

    Not only his life in danger but he specifically said he was concerned about his children being in danger too. It’s particularly understandable given what he has been through.

    I wonder do people around Divis not feel ashamed sometimes at how these adults were treated locally as children. I suppose not though you like to think that now the ‘war’ is over they get it.

  • Charles_Gould


    I was surprised from Michael’s interview at how little the McConville children saw of each other afterwards – they seem to have been kept apart when their mother was murdered.

  • Granni Trixie


    Lack of bonding between siblings through lack of contact Is actually a relatively common problem with care experienced children. It is a theme in the narratives of people involved in the historical institutional abuse cases coming through the courts at present. I like to think that the authorities are more clued up today to try to prevent families breaking up.

  • Charles_Gould

    I actually fear for Michael’s safety – he has been brave.

  • the future’s bright, the future’s orange

    Should SF not be supporting this guy? Surely they should tell him the war is over and that he is under no risk if he passes this information to the police and condeming anyone that would threaten him and his family. Is this not a time for SF to show ‘leadership’ in ‘their’ community???

  • Old Mortality

    I’m sorry but I just can’t accept that anyone who is so keen to see justice done should withhold evidence (that is assuming, of course. that what he is sure he knows amounts to evidence in the legal sense).
    Could he not accept witness protection in return for the possibility of seeing his mother’s murderers convicted? And in present circumstances how likely is it that SF would sanction an attack on him or his family? Not unless the conviction of a senior figure for Mrs McConville’s murder led to the party’s electoral collapse in the RoI.

  • Charles_Gould

    OM – with respect isn’t that rather easy for you to say? I sense that Michael McConville lives still in the community he was brought up in.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Let’s not start attacking the victims who lost their mother.

    The fear of the consequences of telling the authorities who the killers were is serious and it shouldn’t be dismissed easily in the way that it has been here.

    If one or more of the McConville children name names it will be a seismic event. I doubt Gerry Adams himself was actually present when Jean was taken away, but if he ends up being put on the stand and denies involvement under cross-examination he runs the risk of perjuring himself especially if any of these other republicans decide to drop their secrecy and name him.

    I suspect it’s panic stations in Connolly House at the moment.

  • Robinson has threatened to resign a number of times, over relatively small matters, thus collapsing the {generally failed) experiment. If Adams is charged, will it be Marty’s turn?

  • tacapall

    “I actually fear for Michael’s safety”

    Why would that be Charles, are the IRA not disbanded long ago and didn’t one of the McConville family not already name their mothers killer to a local newspaper claiming sympathetic republicans told them it was Pat McKeown who pulled the trigger, did anything happen to him or the family ? Would those same sympathetic republicans not be the same republicans who are pointing the finger at Gerry Adams ? I read today that Jean McConville’s daughter claims she knows who killed her mother and is not afraid to tell. If the above is true and its now the case that the RUC/PSNI are going after every person involved in her abduction and eventual murder, the proper course of action I believe but every family who lost a loved one due to state collusion and the dogs in the street know this particular case is being pursued for political reasons rather than any desire on behalf of the RUC/PSNI or the British government to protect the integrity of the law. This is justice British style where real evidence is ignored when it comes to one of their own and hearsay is enough to warrant arrest when the person is Irish.

  • Old Mortality

    Charles Gould
    I assumed none of the family lived in West Belfast for obvious reasons . But he doesn’t have to live there.

  • It’s absolutely disgusting that any member of his family or any other family would still be in fear of their lives 42 years on. Did “they” go away or did they not (apart from the psychopathic “dissidents)?

  • tacapall

    Some members of the family still live around the lower falls and yes Joe the PIRA did disband or dump arms as it was called long ago. Psychopathic dissidents ! Surely you mean anyone who would take the life of another for no other reason other than political or financial gain and that would be war mongers like David Cameron and Barack Obama who are ultimately to blame for the murders of 100s of thousands of innocent people.

  • No tacapall, I mean people who take personal pleasure in killing other people that they disagree with.

  • tacapall

    You have evidence people you call dissident republicans take personal pleasure in killing people they disagree with ?

  • Of course not; I can only rely on their own boasting words.

  • tacapall

    Boasting words like “GOTCHA STICK THIS UP YOUR JUNTA” in Irish national newspapers.

  • GEF

    Regards the murder of Robert McCartney in 2007 Gerry Adams said the following to the media. Mrs McConville’s son should have nothing to fear SF are in support of him going to the PSNI. Unless `Gerry and Marty have changed their mind.

    “On 31 January 2007, two years after the murder, and in line with the Party’s new policy of supporting civil policing, Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams said that anyone with information about the murder should go to the police.’

  • Charles_Gould

    GEF are you serious? That whole bar was full of IRA people and they all claimed to be in the toilet when it happened.

  • tacapall

    Charles your personal crusade on this matter is a little outdated.

    “Sinn Fein say McConville family should ‘feel free to name names”

    Sinn Fein has said the family of a woman abducted and murdered by the IRA in 1972 should feel free to co-operate with police in the pursuit of justice.

  • tacapall,

    If you’re trying to convince me that the people currently murdering or trying to murder are going home saying “I’m really sorry for doing that ” rather than praising themselves that they have “stuck another blow for freeing Ireland”, you’re barking up the wrong tree.

  • tacapall

    ” rather than praising themselves that they have “stuck another blow for freeing Ireland”,

    Now we’re getting somewhere. Your claims are your own personal opinion then, you have no actual evidence that dissident republicans or their supporters take personal pleasure in killing or using violence to pursue their ends ?

  • GEF

    GEF are you serious?

    CG, very serious, read what Gerry said (below) about supporting the Police back in 2007. Today instead Marty says the PSNI has a dark side to it when they just happen to arrest Gerry. Instead of saying “anyone with information on the McConville murder should go to the police.

    “ Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams said that anyone with information about the murder should go to the police.’

  • DogInTheStreet

    I do agree with Charles Gould’s sentiments. I do wonder why the McConville children still live so near to where this terrible deed took place. Surely every day, seeing the streets and building near the crime scene would make life more intolerable for them than needs be.

  • Reader

    tacapall: You have evidence people you call dissident republicans take personal pleasure in killing people they disagree with ?
    They know that their ineffectual and fragmented campaign won’t get a united Ireland, and they have no other realistic demands, so it must be personal satisfaction that drives them on some level. I assume that satisfaction is based on hatred, but there could be other driving motivations.
    Is it just the word ‘pleasure’ that offends you?

  • tacapall

    Reader where did I say I was offended ? There’s a difference between sharing a fact and giving ones opinion and presenting it as fact, I have no time for those who would use violence so I cant imagine what would drive them to kill another person other than self defense but going by your thinking the British obviously have a deep hatred for every other race in the world.

  • fordprefect


    Robert McCartney was killed in 2005.

    I agree with you re: Obama/Cameron. Personally, I think that a journalist that has any balls left in this place should ask SF reps whether they would encourage Michael or Helen to give the names, and identify the people they saw abducting their Mother. SF say they fully support the PSNI, but, is that support based on who gets arrested? (that’s political policing).

  • Comrade Stalin

    Surely every day, seeing the streets and building near the crime scene would make life more intolerable for them than needs be.

    It’s pretty unrecognizable a this point. The Divis Flats complex is pretty much all gone, except for one tower, and I don’t think even the streets that are there now were there at the time.

    That said, painting a huge mural of Gerry right across the road is incredibly insensitive and distasteful.

  • Kevsterino

    I’ve always believed that justice delayed is justice denied. 42 years, if we can call that one helluva delay amounts to one helluva denial. Therefor, if justice is not available, then what is?