Loyalist mass murderer Michael Stone’s release bid refused

https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/loyalist-killer-michael-stones-release-bid-refused-38518223.html

Murder victim Malcolm McKeown was a member of a notorious loyalist family involved in sectarian murderers

Clifford McKeown, who was convicted of murdering innocent Catholic taxi driver Michael McGoldrick

MURDER victim Malcolm McKeown was a member of a notorious loyalist family.

Both his brothers served life sentences for separate sectarian killings and were linked to numerous other unsolved murders in the Mid Ulster area as members of Billy Wright’s sectarian Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF).

Clifford McKeown, a former loyalist supergrass, is currently serving a life sentence for the murder of Catholic taxi driver Michael McGoldrick, who was shot dead in July 1996, apparently as a ‘birthday present’ for Wright.

The 37-year-old victim had graduated from Queen’s University just days before. His wife Sadie was pregnant with their second child at the time.

Read more:

Northern Ireland lagging behind in legislation to deal with gangland crime
Fears of more bloodshed after fatal shooting of Malcolm McKeown

INNOCENT: Murder victim Michael McGoldrick who was shot dead by Clifford McKeown.

Clifford McKeown was convicted of the murder in 2003 on the evidence of journalist Nick Martin-Clark.

He had confessed to the killing to during a series of interviews in Maghaberry prison where he was serving a sentence for a number of armed robberies.

Mr Martin-Clark, had promised McKeown confidentiality but decided to break his undertaking after hearing the grisly details of the shooting. He later was forced to leave is home and go into the witness protection programme.

Clifford McKeown remains in jail serving 24 years of a life sentence. Since no group claimed him as a member of its organisation he is ineligible for early release under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.

His brother Trevor McKeown was also convicted of shooting dead Catholic teenager Bernadette Martin as she slept in her Protestant boyfriend’s family home in the village of Aghalee, Co Antrim at the height of the Drumcree march dispute.

He shot the 18-year-old in the head as she lay sleeping in a bedroom.

The trial heard that the young couple had stayed overnight at McKeown’s Aghalee home two weeks before the murder.

The murder weapon was the same gun used by his brother in the killing of Michael McGoldrick.

Teenage murder victim Bernadette Martin, who was an innocent Catholic murdered by Trevor McKeown

McKeown was sentenced to life in prison for the July 1997 murder but was released in 2012 by the Sentence Review Commission on the grounds it was “satisfied that, if released immediately, you would not be a danger to the public”.

Trevor McKeown also claimed RUC detectives had urged him to kill Lurgan human rights lawyer Rosemary Nelson two years before she was assassinated by loyalists in a 1999 under-car bombing.

He has since disassociated himself from criminality.

Read more:

Northern Ireland lagging behind in legislation to deal with gangland crime
Fears of more bloodshed after fatal shooting of Malcolm McKeown

With many thanks to: The Irish News and Allison Morris for the original story

Follow these links to find out more: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/opinion/news-analysis/ciaran-barnes-malcolm-mckeown-a-notorious-gangster-who-lived-by-the-sword-and-died-by-it-38421476.html

(2)-: https://www.theguardian.com/uk/1999/jun/10/johnmullin

(3)-: https://alchetron.com/Billy-Wright-%28loyalist%29

RTÉ screening of Glenanne Gang film a ‘major milestone on the road to justice’

Documentary film maker Sean Murray directed documentary ‘Unquiet Graves: the Story of the Glenanne Gang’, about a group of Ulster loyalists who carried out shooting and bombing attacks against Catholics and Irish nationalists in the 1970s in collusion with British security forces. Picture by Liam McBurney/PA Wire

THE Republic’s national broadcaster RTÉ is to screen a documentary investigating allegations of British government involvement in the murder of more than 120 civilians in counties Armagh and Tyrone at the height of the Troubles.

Director Sean Murray said the showing of `Unquiet Graves: The Story of the Glenanne Gang’ is “major milestone on the road to justice”.

The Belfast premiere was in February at Movie House cinema on the city’s Dublin Road.

The feature-length documentary is narrated by the Oscar-nominated actor Stephen Rea.

Among the allegations is a claim by a former RUC officer that British intelligence tried to persuade the UVF to attack a Catholic primary school in Co Armagh in retaliation for the Kingsmill massacre.

https://youtu.be/-WxDTmscvD0

Murray took to his Twitter account to tell followers: “I can now announce that Unquiet Graves will be screening on RTÉ 1 on Monday the 29th of July at 9.35pm.

“This is of immense importance to the ‘Glenanne families’ and is a major milestone on the road to justice. The Time for Truth is now.”

With many thanks to: The Irish News for the original story

Police Ombudsman Michael Maguire regrets not being able to publish three key reports

Five people were shot dead at Sean Graham’s Bookmakers on the Ormeau Road in Belfast in February 1992

DR Michael Maguire has said his biggest regret while serving as Police Ombudsman was having to suspend the publication of three key reports.

The decision was taken earlier this year after it emerged that the PSNI had failed to disclose “significant” information on police computers to his office.

The stalled reports include Operation Achille, relating to the murders of five innocent Catholic men by the UDA at Sean Graham’s Bookmakers on Belfast’s Ormeau Road in February 1992.

The results of a second investigation, Operation Greenwich, which relates to 20 murders and attempted murders across several counties between 1988 and 1994, has also been put on hold.

This report includes details about the infamous 1993 ‘trick or treat’ murders of eight people in the Rising Sun Bar at Greysteel, Co Derry.

Mr Maguire has also said the results of a probe over the murder of 17-year-old Damien Walsh in west Belfast in March 1993 has been delayed.

The ombudsman, who leaves office this week, said not being in a position to publish is a source of regret.

“The fact that I have not been able to publish those reports is probably my greatest regret in the office because I had said to families last year that I was going to do my best to publish them and it was likely that was going to be the case,” he said.

“So I had to go back to them and say ‘look this isn’t going to happen’ – well the impact on them is well publicised.”

At the time Dr Maguire said the new information relates to “sensitive material, intelligence-led material and includes information (on) covert policing”.

It is understood it also relates to a haul of loyalist weapons smuggled into the north in the late 1980s.

“They were major pieces of work, you are talking substantive reports that were nearly ready to go,” he said.

“Had that access issue not have happened I would have published them.”

The ombudsman said he intends to brief his replacement, Marie Anderson, “on what work needs to be done to them”.

“The information which hadn’t been given to us opened up new lines of inquiry and that’s what’s being undertaken at the minute,” he said.

With many thanks to the: Irish News and Connla Young for the original story