1.1 On 12th February 1989 the Belfast solicitor Patrick Finucane was murdered by the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF). In the eleven years since his death evidence has emerged which strongly suggests that there was official collusion in his murder on the part of British army intelligence and the RUC. This evidence also calls into question the role of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and of a government minister. His family’s call for an independent judicial inquiry into his death and the circumstances surrounding it have been echoed by many prestigious organisations and individuals, including the United Nations.

1.2 On the tenth anniversary of his murder, British Irish RIGHTS WATCH delivered a confidential report, Deadly Intelligence, to the British and Irish governments and to the United Nations. Some 64 pages long, it detailed all that was known about his murder and about the operations of the Force Research Unit, a unit within British army intelligence that assisted loyalists to target people for murder. It was extremely detailed and named many names, and for that reason we decided not to publish the report for fear of putting lives at risk. We did, however, publish a summary of the report, which is reproduced in full here:

“On 12th February 1999, the tenth anniversary of the murder of Belfast solicitor Patrick Finucane, British Irish RIGHTS WATCH will deliver a confidential report to the British and Irish governments and to the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers.
The report concerns the activities of British military intelligence and its agent Brian Nelson. It is based on years of research by British Irish RIGHTS WATCH and others. Much of the information it contains is in the public domain, but some of it is not, and for that reason the report itself cannot be published.

In summary, the report alleges that, through its secret Force Research Unit (FRU), a branch of army intelligence, the state sought out loyalist Brian Nelson and infiltrated him into the Ulster Defence Association, which carried out its campaign of murder under the flag of convenience of the Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF). FRU used Nelson to enhance the loyalists’ intelligence on people it was targeting for murder, and that intelligence rapidly spread throughout other loyalist paramilitary groups.

The report examines in depth the murders of three innocent victims of this deadly enterprise: Patrick Finucane, Terence McDaid, and Gerard Slane.

The United Nations’ Special Rapporteur has called for an independent public inquiry into the murder of Patrick Finucane. The British government has refused to hold such an inquiry unless new evidence comes to light. The report reveals information that, if the data we have seen is authentic, constitutes shocking evidence that:

· members of the RUC suggested that the UDA kill Patrick Finucane
· the RUC sent a report to Douglas Hogg which prompted his remark in Parliament that some solicitors were “unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA”
· Nelson was actively involved in the murder
· FRU misled the Stevens Inquiry and the Crown Court about its knowledge of and involvement in the murder
· a “P” [personality] card used by Nelson to summarise information about potential UDA victims was withheld from the Stevens Inquiry into collusion and has been withheld from lawyers acting for Patrick Finucane’s widow
· RUC Special Branch had detailed information about the plot to murder Patrick Finucane but did nothing to prevent it or to protect him.
This is all information which, if true, would constitute new evidence.
Terence McDaid was killed when he was mistaken for one of his brothers. The report suggests that it may have been wrong information from FRU’s handlers that led to his death. The Ministry of Defence have paid compensation to his family.

Nelson kept his handlers informed about the UFF conspiracy to murder Gerard Slane, but the report indicates that FRU did nothing to protect him. The Ministry of Defence have also compensated his family.

The alleged role played by FRU, and possibly by elements within the RUC, in these three murders and many others meant that UFF assassins were not brought to book. They literally got away with murder.

The report also examines the significant role played by Nelson in procuring weapons from South Africa for three loyalist groups, the UFF, the Ulster Volunteer Force and Ulster Resistance. Both FRU and MI5 were fully aware of Nelson’s involvement. After the shipment of weapons was received, loyalists’ capacity for murder more than doubled.

The report also discusses evidence that indicates that FRU misled the Stevens Inquiry. British Irish RIGHTS WATCH has examined documents which, if authentic, show that

· FRU impounded Nelson’s intelligence material within a week of the Stevens team’s arrival in Belfast
· FRU did not hand over these materials to Stevens until ten days after Nelson’s arrest three months later
· FRU did not hand over its own materials to Stevens for another six months or more
· the Stevens team found evidence that the materials had been tampered with
· not all the relevant documents were passed to Stevens.
FRU’s activities appear to have gone beyond isolated acts of collusion. Before the late 1980s, loyalist murders were often wholly sectarian and apparently random. After 1988 their capacity for murder increased dramatically and their targeting of victims became very much more precise. There seems very little doubt that FRU played a systematic role in this. If so, they broke every rule in the book and committed some very serious crimes.

British Irish RIGHTS WATCH considers that all the deaths and other crimes in which FRU was allegedly involved merit proper scrutiny by a public inquiry. The organisation believes that the British government will be able to tell from the report whether the documents on which these allegations are based are genuine, because if so they have the originals in their possession. If they are authentic, then only a public inquiry can allay the matters of burning public interest that they raise.

The materials on which the report is based strongly suggest that agents of the state have been involved, directly and indirectly, in the murder of its citizens, in contravention of domestic law and all international human rights standards. British Irish RIGHTS WATCH calls on the British government without further delay or prevarication to set up an independent public inquiry with full judicial powers to investigate the matters raised in the report. In particular, such an inquiry must:

· determine whether the activities of the Force Research Unit, especially their infiltration of Brian Nelson into the UDA, had as their aim the assassination of any individual
· make an informed assessment based on all the available evidence, whether currently in the public domain or not, of the damage caused by those activities, both in terms of lives lost and otherwise
· determine how much knowledge and oversight of those activities was had by the army, the intelligence service, the police, the Northern Ireland Office and the government.”
1.3 When we delivered our report to the then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Mo Mowlam, she promised the families of Patrick Finucane, Terence McDaid, and Gerard Slane a swift response. A year later they are still waiting, despite the Irish government’s conviction that such an inquiry is necessary. We note that the British government has not denied any of our allegations. This report, which will be published in full, details the developments of the past year. What they show is that

¨ significant further evidence of collusion has emerged
¨ another lawyer, Rosemary Nelson, has been brutally murdered in circumstances that bear some striking similarities to those of Patrick Finucane’s death
¨ further evidence pointing to RUC involvement in collusion in the murder of Patrick Finucane has emerged
¨ attempts to cover up the truth about his murder continue
¨ serious doubts surround the role of Sir John Stevens in his investigation into the murder, ordered by the Chief Constable of the RUC in response to our first report
¨ there may also have been RUC involvement in the murders of Terence McDaid and Gerard Slane
¨ the role of the DPP in protecting loyalists from prosecution and sanctioning sentencing deals for those convicted must now be investigated, as well as that of the army, the intelligence service, and the RUC
¨ support for a full inquiry has grown considerably, particularly within the legal profession.
1.4 Everything that has come to light points ever more sharply to the need for an independent judicial inquiry. In our view, it is not a matter of whether such an inquiry should take place, but when. The longer the British government delays, the more it makes itself a party to the shameful murders, lies, and cover-ups that our reports reveal. We are dealing here with the ugliest face of the conflict in Northern Ireland. It undermines public confidence in the security forces, the system of criminal justice, and of government itself. It strikes down the principle that lies at the very heart of good governance, the rule of law. The only way to undo the appalling damage we describe is to hold an inquiry sooner rather than later, so that the relatives of the many people who have lost their lives as a result can find some kind of justice, so that the public may know the truth, and so that such events can never happen again.

2.1 On 7th March 1999, three weeks after we delivered our report, the BBC2 television series Loyalists, by respected journalist Peter Taylor, broadcast an interview with Bobby Philpott, a UFF member released from prison last October under the early release scheme. Philpott was a close associate of Brian Nelson. The broadcast included the following exchange:

“Taylor: How were you able to target republicans in the way that you did?
Philpott: Security forces’ information.
Taylor: Which branches of the security forces?
Philpott: All branches: RUC, army, UDR.
Taylor: The police assisted you in the targeting and killing of republicans?
Philpott: In targeting.”
Taylor then asked Philpott how he received this information.
“Philpott: I was getting documents daily. I was getting so many documents I didn’t know where to put them.
Taylor: What sort of documents?
Philpott: Intelligence reports, photos, what colour socks republicans was wearing… what sort of cars they drive, where they lived… their safe houses.
Taylor: Could the UFF have done what it did without that degree of help from the security forces?
Philpott: No.”
2.2 In 1999 Hodder & Stoughton published a book, Fishers of Men, by a former member of the Force Research Unit, Bob Lewis. In the foreword, he describes FRU’s role as follows:

“The objective of the unit was to target, recruit and run human sources from all divisions of the community, with priority given to the running of agents within the terrorist organisations themselves. The FRU’s role is probably the most sensitive of all the covert operations undertaken within Northern Ireland. It is the only military unit that exploits pre-emptive intelligence gathered directly from its informants to combat terrorist activity.”
In a note at the beginning of the book, the author says that his book was vetted by the Ministry of Defence prior to publication.

2.3 In a series of articles published in the Sunday Times [1], a former member of FRU calling himself Martin Ingram has made a number of revelations about what he calls “the dirty war”. He claims that FRU started the fire that nearly wrecked Sir John Stevens’ first investigation into collusion and the activities of Brian Nelson. The fire took place on 10th January 1990, the same day that Brian Nelson temporarily fled to Britain in order to escape arrest by Stevens. It did extensive damage to Stevens’ office and would have ruined his investigation had he not taken the precaution of keeping copies of key documents elsewhere. When members of Stevens’ team discovered the blaze, they found that the fire alarms were not working and the telephone lines were dead. It seems unlikely that FRU could have started the fire and sabotaged the fire alarms and telephones without some internal assistance from the RUC, whose reservists guarded the building, which was the headquarters of the Northern Ireland Police Authority at Seapark, Carrickfergus. Martin Ingram claims that FRU “wanted a little bit of time to construct an alternative cover story” to explain its relationship with Nelson. It is believed that Nelson had fled as the result of a tip-off from FRU, who in turn had been tipped off about his impending arrest by an RUC officer. Commenting on these revelations in its editorial on 21st November 1999, the Sunday Times said:

“The public interest requires that the full truth is known before it is lost in a welter of cover-ups.”

2.4 On 25th November 1999, Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon obtained an injunction in the High Court in London banning the Sunday Times from publishing any more allegations by Martin Ingram. The Secretary of State argued that Ingram owed “a duty of confidence/secrecy to the crown”. Initially the court order barred the newspaper from even reporting that it had been silenced, and from repeating the allegations it had already published, but the following day Mr Justice Sullivan relaxed these conditions. The hearings were held in camera. On 28th November the Sunday Times called for a public inquiry. The newspaper said that it intended to contest the attempt to censor them, saying that they are exposing illegality.

2.5 The Metropolitan Police’s Special Branch has now opened an investigation into the Sunday Times’ allegations concerning the fire in Stevens’ office. However, they are not looking into the question of whether FRU started the fire. Instead, they are investigating whether Martin Ingram has breached the Official Secrets Act by telling his story to the newspaper [2]. On 17th December 1999 Martin Ingram was arrested by Metropolitan Police officers in Wales at the request of the Ministry of Defence. He was taken to Charing Cross police station in London and questioned about possible offences under the Official Secrets Act. He was released without charge on police bail on 18th December until February 2000.[3] We understand that he was not interviewed by the Stevens team, nor was he questioned about the fire in Stevens’ office. The authorities seem very anxious indeed to cover up this story, which we have reason to believe is true.

2.6 Another person who has been on the receiving end of official attempts to silence him is journalist Nicholas Davies. His book, Ten-Thirty-Three: The Inside Story of Britain’s Secret Killing Machine was published [4] in November 1999. He too was made the subject of a High Court injunction in February 1998, and his notes and computer were confiscated. He claims he was put under intense pressure to identify his three informants, whom he describes as being from “the higher echelons of the British intelligence establishment”, but he refused to do so. He was finally allowed to publish his book after removing some 10% of its contents, although he says that none of the excisions concerned FRU.[5] It is to be presumed that, after such careful vetting, what remains in the book is accepted by the government as being true. In our view, his book is not always accurate when it comes to details. For example, our information is that Brian Nelson’s FRU agent number was 6137, not 1033 as Davies claims. However, generally speaking the picture that he paints of FRU, its methods, and the role played by Brian Nelson largely confirms what we said in Deadly Intelligence. This is significant because his account, so far as we can ascertain, came from completely different sources from our account.

2.7 The picture that Nicholas Davies gives concerning FRU differs from our account in two important respects. First, he describes, more strongly than we were able to, a systematic policy and method of operation on the part of FRU which led them to instigate many murders. This description does not conflict with our allegations, but, if accurate, it substantiates them considerably. Davies gives details of at least nine murders in which he alleges that FRU played a proactive role, including the murders of Terence McDaid [6] (although it was his brother Declan they targeted) and Gerard Slane [7]. Secondly, he alleges that the then Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher took a very close interest in FRU’s activities [8]. He claims that this interest stemmed from her near escape at the time of the Brighton bombing in October 1984. He says that she demanded weekly reports from the Joint Irish Section, an MI5 committee that co-ordinated intelligence and security in Northern Ireland, and points out that MI5 had a liaison officer who worked from the same office as FRU’s ops (operations) officer. He also says that some FRU CFs (Contact Forms, Davies calls them Contact Reports) were passed to the Joint Intelligence Committee, chaired by Margaret Thatcher, “usually on request” [9].

2.8 Davies also describes the use of “restriction orders” that ensured that other branches of the security forces kept out of an area where another branch was operating [10]. He alleges that FRU often used these to assist loyalists to get to and from a murder scene without encountering security force patrols [11].

2.9 When it comes to the murder of Patrick Finucane, however, our account differs from his in many respects. It is obvious to us that his sources were not speaking from firsthand knowledge of this murder.

2.10 On 4th November 1999, the RUC raided Stoneyford Orange Hall in County Antrim. They found up to 300 files containing photographs, addresses, telephone numbers and other personal details of alleged republicans from South Armagh and Belfast [12]. By 7th November alarming details were emerging about this find. According to one Sunday newspaper [13]:

“The information contained in the handwritten documents discovered at Stoneyford Orange Hall in Co Antrim last weekend is more recent than was first thought. Some of the details were copied from army files compiled as recently as 1997, three years after the IRA declared its first cessation. There were also copies of 70 photographs of republican suspects taken between 1988 and 1993 [14].”
The paper quoted a security source as saying,

“All the indications are that it was the work of elements within the regular British Army, probably intelligence. It represents a very serious breach of security.”

Another paper [15]also claimed that the original documents came from army intelligence and reported:

“A senior RUC officer said the material they are looking for includes information on the murder of Lurgan solicitor Rosemary Nelson, the personal details of republican suspects, and statements carrying threats against the lives of journalists working in Northern Ireland.”

By December the same newspaper [16] claimed:

“Secret military intelligence files on almost 400 republican suspects that fell into the hands of dissidents came from the British Army’s central headquarters in Northern Ireland. The files – which included names, addresses, car registrations, photographs and maps of the homes belonging to republicans – were downloaded from a computer inside Thiepval barracks, the army’s HQ in Ulster. The Observer has learnt that the investigation into the leak to the Orange Volunteers centres on civilian workers at the base who are related to known dissidents. Last night the Army refused to discuss the origin of the files…”

If it is true that elements within British army intelligence have continued to leak security files to dissident loyalists since the ceasefires, the case for a public inquiry into the matters raised by our earlier report and by these recent discoveries is irrefutable.


3.1 On 15th March 1999, ten years and one month after the murder of Patrick Finucane, Lurgan solicitor Rosemary Nelson was blown up by a loyalist car bomb outside her home. She suffered horrific injuries and died two hours later.

3.2 Like Patrick Finucane, her clients had reported a systematic pattern of abuse against her by certain RUC officers in the two and a half years prior to her death. With Patrick Finucane’s fate very much on her mind, she complained about this abuse, privately and publicly. In March 1997 she allowed the American Lawyers Alliance for Justice in Northern Ireland to make an official complaint on her behalf, which was investigated by the Independent Commission for Police Complaints. In July that year she was assaulted by unidentifiable RUC officers while trying to represent her clients’ interests on the Garvaghy Road. She told the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, “I can’t recall ever being so frightened in my life.” When the UN’s Special Rapporteur on Judges and Lawyers, Dato’ Param Cumaraswamy, visited Northern Ireland in October that year, she told him about her fears for her safety. The Special Rapporteur highlighted her case in his 1998 report to the UN Commission on Human Rights [17]. He also wrote to the government privately expressing concern about her safety [18]. The abuse against her did not abate. In September 1998 she testified before the House Subcommittee on International Operations and Human Rights in Washington, concerning harassment and intimidation of defence lawyers and death threats against her by the RUC. She told Congress:

“Another reason why RUC officers abuse me in this way is because they are unable to distinguish me as a professional lawyer from the alleged crimes and causes of my clients. This tendency to identify me with my clients has led to accusations by RUC officers that I have been involved in paramilitary activity, which I deeply and bitterly resent… I believe that my role as a lawyer in defending the rights of my clients is vital. The test of a new society in Northern Ireland will be the extent to which it can recognise and respect that role, and enable me to discharge it without improper interference. I look forward to that day[19].”
Human rights groups in Northern Ireland, in Britain and around the world repeatedly raised her case with the RUC and the government, to no avail. In November 1998, British Irish RIGHTS WATCH said in a report about intimidation of defence lawyers to the UN:

“One solicitor who has been subjected to a campaign of death threats and vile abuse, some of it sexual in character, by RUC officers is Rosemary Nelson from Lurgan… We have transmitted a number of complaints on her behalf to the Special Rapporteur during the past year, and also conducted extensive correspondence with the Secretary of State. The situation in the area where Rosemary Nelson practices remains volatile and we call on the UK government to accept responsibility for her safety and for bringing this despicable campaign to an end.[20]”
The Chief Constable of the RUC, Sir Ronnie Flanagan, to whom we sent a copy of our report, responded with utter contempt, saying:

“I have received the documents forwarded with your letter of 5 November 1998. I suppose by now I really should have learned to expect, and not be surprised by, the total absence of balance in reports produced by your organisation. This latest report continues your now well established practice in that regard.” [21]
Less than three weeks before her death, the Lawyers Alliance met the Chief Constable, to express their concern for her safety. Only three days before her death she gave an interview to the Irish News in which she talked of the death threats she had received, describing them as “so sinister”. The interview was published posthumously .[22].

3.3 Despite her fears for her own safety, Rosemary Nelson campaigned consistently for an inquiry into Patrick Finucane’s murder. In January 1998 a statement signed by 33 lawyers in Northern Ireland, entitled Equal Protection under the Law, was published. Rosemary Nelson was the chief author of that statement, which read in part:

“We remain particularly concerned about the murder of our esteemed professional colleague, Pat Finucane. It is simply unacceptable, that faced with compelling evidence of state involvement in the killing of a defence lawyer, no action has been taken. Serious allegations of collusion between members of illegal loyalist paramilitary organisations and members of the security forces have yet to be properly investigated. Similarly no action has been taken about the continuing intimidation and abuse of solicitors by police officers via their clients in detention centres. We are all too well aware of this continuing problem, which is one we face in our daily lives.” [23]
She said in her address to Congress in September 1998;

“No lawyer in Northern Ireland can forget what happened to Patrick Finucane or dismiss it from their minds. The allegations of official collusion in his murder are particularly disturbing and can only be resolved by an independent inquiry into his murder, as has been recommended by the UN Special Rapporteur. I would be grateful if the Sub-committee could do all in its power to bring about such an inquiry, by communicating to the United Kingdom government its belief that an inquiry in this case would in fact boost the peace process, as it has been in the Bloody Sunday case.” [24]
On 12th February 1999 she addressed a meeting in Derry on behalf of the Pat Finucane Centre, marking the tenth anniversary of his murder. A month later she too was murdered.

3.4 On the day after her murder, realising that parallels would be drawn with the death of Patrick Finucane and that her case would be equally controversial, the RUC Chief Constable announced that he had called in the FBI to assist with the forensic aspects of the murder investigation. He also said that the Chief Constable of Kent, David Phillips, had been appointed “to oversee the investigation” [25]. Both these moves turned out to be cosmetic. Within two weeks, the Chief Constable announced that Colin Port, Deputy Chief Constable of Norfolk Constabulary, would assume responsibility for the day-to-day control, direction and command of the murder investigation [26]. David Phillips’ role seems quietly to have been phased out. In a radio interview at the end of March, the Chief Constable said that David Phillips’ “responsibilities in other fields don’t allow him to be here on a daily basis”[27] . On 12th April 1999, only a month after the murder, John Guido, legal attaché to the FBI, indicated that its 4-week involvement with the murder investigation was at an end. He said the FBI found little that they would have suggested the RUC change or do differently. [28]

3.5 When Colin Port arrived on the scene, he found that the murder investigation was already well under way. The Chief Constable had set up a team, within the investigation team as a whole, to look into the question of whether there had been any collusion in the murder, which included RUC officers [29]. The whole team was based at Lurgan RUC station, the very office from which some of the worst abuse against Rosemary Nelson emanated, and the team was sharing the RUC’s computers. It was late July before it was reported that the investigation team had its own computer system and that all RUC personnel had been removed from the collusion team [30].

3.6 The involvement of RUC officers in the police investigation meant that some witnesses were reluctant to speak to the police. Some have still not come forward to this day. In May 1999 the Pat Finucane Centre published a report on Rosemary Nelson’s murder [31]. In it they included extracts from interviews they had conducted with 52 local eyewitnesses after the Centre had been asked to take statements because of local reluctance to talk to the RUC. These 52 people all came forward voluntarily, without any approach being made to them by the Centre. Many of them gave consistent accounts of intense and highly unusual security force activity in the area around Rosemary Nelson’s house in the 48 hours before the murder. Saturation of an area by the security forces has been cited in other murders where collusion has been alleged as a suspicious circumstance. Such activity has the side effect of discouraging local people from being out and about and noticing anything or anyone unusual, and could provide cover for loyalists intent on murder.

3.7 Another very disturbing aspect of Rosemary Nelson’s murder is the way in which her complaints about threats and abuse against her by RUC officers were handled. The ICPC began to investigate her complaints in March 1997. On 23rd March 1997 the ICPC passed the complaints they had received from the Lawyers Alliance to the RUC. The RUC initially refused to accept them as bona fide complaints[32]. Geralyn McNally, the member of the ICPC responsible for their investigation, became increasingly critical of the way in which RUC officers acting under her supervision were dealing with the investigation. She identified nine separate points of dissatisfaction, including the hostility, evasion and disinterest of RUC officers, the provision of pre-prepared written statements by RUC officers due to be questioned, and a general unwillingness on some of their part to co-operate with the investigation or take it seriously. She cited “ill-disguised hostility to Mrs Nelson” by some RUC officers as “bordering on the obstructive”[33]. The Chairman of the ICPC, Paul Donnelly, drew her concerns to the attention of the Chief Constable and the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. On 10th July 1998, the Chief Constable called in the Metropolitan Police to take over the investigation. They appointed Commander Niall Mulvihill to be in command. On 22nd March 1999, days after the murder, Geralyn McNally certified that she was satisfied “now” (her emphasis) with the conduct of the investigation. However, on 14th July 1999, a private report by Paul Donnelly, the ICPC Chairman, was leaked to the press. Written on 24th April 1999, it was heavily critical of Mulvihill’s part in the investigation. In particular, it criticised the fact that Mulvihill only conducted a review of the RUC’s handling of the investigation, rather than investigating the complaints from scratch. It also disapproved of the practice of allowing RUC officers who were under investigation to read other witness statements, presumably including Rosemary Nelson’s own statement, before being interviewed. The Chairman said that Mulvihill was too ready to accept the RUC’s classification of the abuse against Rosemary Nelson, some of which was sexually explicit, as “incivility”, and displayed insufficient concern over an RUC officer identifying the solicitor with a client “of bad character”. Mulvihill had failed to vindicate Geralyn McNally’s complaints about the RUC handling of the investigation. Paul Donnelly also disputed Mulvihill’s finding that “thorough” interviews were conducted with RUC officers alleged to have threatened Rosemary Nelson, most of whom declined to answer questions. [34]If her complaints were well-founded, and all the evidence suggests that they were, then no RUC officer has been disciplined, let alone dismissed, for uttering death threats and other disgusting abuse against her. There is no doubt in our minds that such abuse helped to create the climate which brought about her death.

3.8 Much more could be said about this barbaric murder [35], but for the purposes of this report suffice it to say that there are some obvious parallels between the murder of Rosemary Nelson and that of Patrick Finucane. In particular, the attitude of certain RUC officers towards both lawyers is chillingly similar, with both of them suffering threats and abuse before they died.

3.9 The timing of Rosemary Nelson’s murder was significant. It is obvious that from their own warped perspective her death served a number of purposes for her murderers. At one level it was clearly an attempt to destabilise the peace process in Northern Ireland. At another, it put an end to the career of an able advocate who, like Patrick Finucane, was becoming a thorn in the side of the RUC and others. Thirdly, and here again there are echoes of Patrick Finucane’s murder, her murder sent a clear message to defence lawyers generally to keep their heads down and to the Finucane family to desist from campaigning. It is an intensely uncomfortable thought that the publicity surrounding the tenth anniversary of his murder and Rosemary Nelson’s own outspoken support for an inquiry into his case may have contributed towards the decision to target her for murder.

3.10 While there is at present no evidence of any direct link between the two murders, that of Rosemary Nelson has intensified the need for an independent judicial inquiry into that of Patrick Finucane. Her untimely death has shown that Patrick Finucane’s murder was not a once-only event. That another lawyer should die so violently during a period of ceasefire shows that the murder of Patrick Finucane ten years ago, and in particular the government’s failure to act to counter the official cover-up or to protect lawyers simply going about their work, has repercussions that are still highly relevant today.


4.1 Since our first report was confidential, the scope for official reaction to it has been limited. However, three public reactions are worthy of note. They are the reactions of the Irish government, that of the United Nations and that of the Chief Constable of the RUC.

4.2 When we presented a copy of Deadly Intelligence to Department of Foreign Affairs Minister of State Liz O’Donnell on 12th February 1999, she said that she would read the report personally, have her officials evaluate it, and then deliver that evaluation to the British government. Acting with commendable speed, on 13th April 1999 she forwarded an eleven-page evaluation to the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland. She told Mo Mowlam,

“In the light of the report and this assessment, I believe that the case for a public inquiry into all the circumstances surrounding Mr Finucane’s murder is compelling.As the assessment argues, the Finucane case and the associated allegations of collusion, fulfil the fundamental requirement of a public inquiry i.e. that the matter under consideration is of urgent public interest. The accumulated evidence is sufficient to give reasonable cause to the public to believe that collusion may have taken place. Moreover, the allegations in question serve to undermine confidence in the rule of law. In my view, they can only be answered with confidence – one way or the other – through the mechanism of a public inquiry.” [36]
As we have already pointed out, we are still waiting for a response from the Northern Ireland Office.

4.3 We also sent a copy of Deadly Intelligence to Dato’ Param Cumaraswamy, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers. Introducing his most recent report to the Commission on Human Rights in April 1999, he said:

With regard to the Patrick Finucane murder, I have continued receiving further information. I understand the same information has also been submitted to the Government of the United Kingdom. I am even more convinced that there is now a stronger case made for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into that murder to ascertain whether there was security forces, including the RUC, collusion in that murder and therefore once again reiterate my recommendation for such as inquiry.” [37]
During the same session of the Commission, a meeting was held in memory of Rosemary Nelson, which was addressed by the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Mary Robinson. During her tribute she said,

“… There are dark elements that have to be addressed in this solemn moment of marking the tragic death of Rosemary Nelson… Her death evoked the sad death ten years earlier of Patrick Finucane, who has been also to the front of concern here at the Commission.” [38]
4.4 On 18th March 1999, an RUC press release was issued that said:

“The Chief Constable also announced that the British/Irish Rights [sic] document recentily [sic] presented to the Secretary of State has been referred by him to Mr Sir John Stevens, Deputy Commissioner of the London Metropolitan Police Service, for investigation.”
4.5 We were surprised by and concerned about this development. At a meeting with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on 23rd March 1999 we raised various concerns with her. We told her that we understood when we gave her our report that it would be necessary for her to consult with a number of persons before reaching a conclusion. She told us that she had passed the report to the Chief Constable of the RUC, the Director of Public Prosecutions, and the Attorney General. No doubt she also passed it to others whom she did not mention, but this group of recipients surprised us, since they are primarily concerned with the detection and prosecution of crime. Our report was not primarily concerned with those matters; it was designed to enable her to decide whether or not an independent inquiry was required. It became apparent that the Chief Constable had not consulted the Secretary of State about his decision to refer the report to Sir John Stevens and she was unable to explain his reasons for having done so. At the meeting her chief of security, David Watkins, said that the Chief Constable had taken this action because he believed the report disclosed fresh crimes that needed police investigation and the Chief Constable deemed Sir John Stevens to be the most appropriate person to investigate them. We pointed out that the report had not been designed to ground a police investigation, that any such investigation in advance of an independent inquiry would be premature and doomed to failure, and that were such an inquiry to be held Sir John Stevens would be a key witness and it was therefore inappropriate to call him in. We also drew her attention to the fact that his two previous investigations had failed to bring Patrick Finucane’s murderers to book, and that we believed this was because vital evidence had been withheld from him. Neither of his two previous reports were published, and another secret investigation was no substitute for a proper inquiry. He does not have the power to compel witnesses to be interviewed, nor does he have the power to compel the disclosure of documents. There is a real danger that the Stevens investigation will bury the truth rather than reveal it. Suspects will be advised, quite properly, by their lawyers not to answer questions, and will be alerted to lines of enquiry and to the possibility of destroying documentary evidence. In any case, our allegations were based on information which we have reason to believe is already in the hands of the authorities; there is no need for a police investigation to discover what is already known.

4.6 We also expressed concern that the Chief Constable, who in our view had no right to take it upon himself to use our report in that manner, might use the existence of an on-going police investigation to frustrate any decision she might take to call an independent inquiry. In July the Northern Ireland Office replied to a letter from a member of the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, calling for an inquiry, in the following terms:

“The Government has not ruled out any course of action in this case. As you are aware, a further police inquiry began in April this year into the murder and related issues, and someone has now been charged with Mr Finucane’s murder. This very much limits the Government’s position at present.”
4.7 Subsequently, extreme confusion has arisen about Sir John Stevens’ previous investigations into the murder of Patrick Finucane, and his investigation to date has raised more questions than it has answered. [39]


5.1 Sir John Stevens twice conducted investigations in Northern Ireland before his present investigation. The first investigation commenced in September 1989 and the second in the summer of 1992, after (though not necessarily because) a Panorama programme exposed Brian Nelson’s role in the murder of Patrick Finucane.

5.2 On 6th September 1990, Detective Superintendent Alan Simpson, who was in command of the RUC murder investigation, told the inquest on Patrick Finucane’s death that Stevens had investigated some of the allegations of collusion in the murder, but these enquiries had been quite separate from the RUC’s investigation into the murder, although there had been close liaison between the two teams.

5.3 On 4th September 1992 Stevens met a delegation from the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, during a fact-finding mission. They reported:

“The Stevens Inquiry has not, however, resulted in prosecution for the Finucane murder. Nor were efforts made to contact Mrs. Finucane, Finucane’s colleagues at his firm, or his former clients. Mr. Stevens, who met with members of our delegation, told us that limited time, resources, and terms of reference prevented his inquiry from tracking down every lead in the Finucane case. He added that anything that was uncovered would properly have been turned over to the RUC.” [40]
5.4 On 17th January 1995, Sir John Stevens wrote to British Irish RIGHTS WATCH in the following terms:

“With regard to the murder of Patrick FINUCANE, I can confirm that this matter was fully investigated during the initial and subsequent inquiry and the results included in both reports [to the DPP].” [41]
This would appear to be a quite unequivocal declaration that he did investigate the murder during both his earlier investigations and reported on his findings to the DPP.

5.5 In June 1995 the Law Society of England and Wales’ International Human Rights Working Party sent a delegation to Northern Ireland. They also met Sir John Stevens. Commenting on the DPP’s decision not to prosecute anyone following Stevens’ second investigation, they said:

“This does not mean that there are no suspects. On the contrary we believe the police have, at the very least, strong suspicions as to the identity of the killers. Sir John Stevens told us he knew ‘beyond a shadow of a doubt’ who was responsible for the murder.” [42]
5.6 On 20th August 1995, the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights again met Sir John Stevens. This time, they reported:

“The second Stevens Inquiry has produced few, if any, results. Unlike the first report, the follow-up has not led to any reforms or prosecutions to date. As before, Mr. Stevens spoke with the Lawyers Committee and stressed that he had conducted a thorough investigation into Nelson’s activities, including with respect to the Finucane murder, though he added that he could not discuss specific findings… He also reiterated that he ‘absolutely’ knew who Finucane’s killers were, but was not at liberty to disclose their identity publicly.” [43]
5.7 On 14th April 1999, Audrey Glover, the Head of the UK’s Delegation to the UN, told the Commission on Human Rights:

“The first point the Government would like to make in response to Mr Cumaraswamy is that the Patrick Finucane case was considered not only by the criminal investigation into the murder but also in great detail by Sir John Stevens as part of his wider inquiry into allegations of collusion between the security forces and terrorists.” [44]
This also seems a clear statement that Stevens did investigate the case, “in great detail”.

5.8 On 16th April 1999 a junior Minister at the Ministry of Defence, Doug Henderson MP, said in a reply to a Parliamentary Question:

“The murder of Patrick Finucane was investigated both by the RUC and subsequently by the investigation team led by Sir John Stevens, then Deputy Chief Constable of Cambridgeshire.” [45]
Until this date, then a consistent picture emerges.

5.9 However, on 28th April 1999 Sir John Stevens held a press briefing in Belfast. Here is how he described his first two investigations:

“Referring to his earlier involvement in Northern Ireland, Mr Stevens said that in September 1989 he had been appointed by the then RUC Chief Constable, Sir Hugh Annesley to inquire into breaches of security by the Security Forces in the Province.
The inquiry began after the theft of photo-montages from a Belfast police station. It resulted in 43 convictions and over 800 years of imprisonment for those convicted.

Mr Stevens said that his report contained more than 100 recommendations for the handling of security documents and information. All had been accepted and implemented.

In 1993, he was again asked by Sir Hugh Annesley to investigate further matters which solely related to the initial inquiry.

He added that at no time did he investigate the murder of Mr Finucane. However, the earlier inquiries, through the so-called double agent Brian Nelson, were linked to the murder.” [46]

In a newspaper account of the press conference [47], it was reported:

“Those investigations [into security force leaks], as he revealed at a press conference in Belfast yesterday, also pointed to a link to the murder of Mr Finucane. He reported his concerns at the time to the Northern Ireland Director of Public Prosecutions and to the then RUC chief constable, Sir Hugh Annesley. No prosecutions followed from those concerns.”
It is known that Brian Nelson was interviewed by the Stevens team and made a long statement; it was doubtless this statement that prompted Stevens to alert the DPP and the Chief Constable.

5.10 A few days before the press conference, on 23rd April 1999, Sir John Stevens wrote to Peter Madden, Patrick Finucane’s former legal partner, seeking the co-operation of the Finucane family in his latest investigation. He wrote:

“I am sure you are aware that I have been appointed to reinvestigate the murder of Patrick Finucane… The original enquiry was followed by a request from the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate further allegations, which related to a Panorama programme and the enquiry is sometimes referred to as Stevens Two. Those enquiries primarily related to the activities of the so-called ‘double agent’ Brian Nelson. At no time was I given the authority by either the Chief Constable of the RUC or the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate the murder of Patrick Finucane.” [48]
This letter raises even deeper questions about Stevens’ role. Stevens knew, because of his own team’s interview of Nelson, about Brian Nelson’s role, and also the role of others, in the murder of Patrick Finucane during his first investigation. He was so disturbed by what he learned that he reported on it to both the DPP and the Chief Constable. By the time of Stevens Two, Nelson had stood trial and the Panorama programme had been broadcast. Neither the DPP nor the Chief Constable could claim to be unaware of the allegations of collusion in the murder of Patrick Finucane, especially since they knew about Stobie’s role (please see paragraph 6.5 below), yet Stevens was not authorised by either of them to investigate. Nevertheless, Stevens and government ministers and representatives have been telling the world that he did investigate the murder on both occasions. If it is true that he was not in fact allowed to investigate the murder, what were the reasons behind that decision, and why have the Finucane family, the United Nations, and the public been misled?


6.1 So far, Sir John Stevens has made eleven arrests, one of which has led to a loyalist being charged with the murder of Patrick Finucane.

6.2 A man called Fletcher was arrested on 27th July 1999. He is a former member of the Ulster Defence Regiment. He was convicted, we believe in 1989, for stealing weapons, including the Browning used to murder Patrick Finucane, from Palace Barracks. He sold the guns to the UFF. On this occasion, he was released without charge.

6.3 Mark Barr was arrested on 28th July 1999 and charged on 29th July with:

1. possession of photocopies of index cards concerning named persons (not named in the charge) between 1985 and 1989
2. possession of photocopies of index cards and photomontages between 1984 and 1989
3. possession of a computer printout of named persons (not named in the charge) on a date unknown before 16th January 1990.
He was arrested with William and Stephen Barr in July 1989. The three men were in possession of the Browning used in the murder. William Barr, Francis Arbuthnot and David Anderson were later convicted of possession of weapons and UFF membership.

6.4 Another man whose name we do not know was also arrested on 27th July. He is 36 years old and comes from Glencairn area of Belfast. He was arrested in a dawn swoop on a caravan in Co. Down where he was on holiday. He was released without charge. It is not known whether a report was sent to the DPP concerning this man.

6.5 The arrest that has hogged the limelight has been that of Billy Stobie. He was arrested and on 23rd June he was charged with the murder of Patrick Finucane. Stobie has now confessed publicly that he was at the time of the murder a quartermaster for the Ulster Defence Association, whose armed wing was the UFF, and that he supplied the weapons used in the murder. He has also said publicly that he was acting as an informer for the RUC’s Special Branch, and that he told his handlers everything he knew at the time concerning the murder.

6.6 In June 1990 Stobie described his role in the murder to a journalist, Neil Mullholland, who at that time worked for the Sunday Life newspaper and is now a press officer at the Northern Ireland Office. Although Stobie spoke to Mulholland in confidence, Mullholland has been reported as [49]having discussed what Stobie had told him about the murder with Bill McGookin, the head of the RUC press office. On 7th September 1990, Mullholland was formally interviewed by the RUC. He told them all he knew, but refused to sign a statement or hand over his interview notes. On 13th September 1990 Stobie was arrested and questioned about the Finucane murder during a period of seven days’ detention under emergency laws. He denied direct involvement in the murder, but admitted to being the UDA’s quartermaster, supplying the weapons used in the murder, and recovering them afterwards. He said he did not know who was the intended target, but only that it was a “top provo”. Stobie was released without charge, but a file was sent to the DPP.

6.7 Knowing that Mulholland had breached his confidentiality, Stobie then spoke to Ed Moloney, the Northern Ireland editor of the Sunday Tribune. He is a very experienced and highly respected journalist, noted for his political commentary and investigative reporting, and for his independence. Stobie agreed to tell the journalist everything he knew about the Finucane murder and various other matters in return for an absolute undertaking from Ed Moloney that he would not publish what he was told without Stobie’s express permission.

6.8 Stevens interviewed Mullholland on 3rd June 1999. On this occasion, Mullholland gave Stevens a signed statement and his original notes of his interview with Stobie. On 23rd June 1999 Stobie was charged with the murder of Patrick Finucane. On 24th June he appeared at Belfast Magistrate’s Court, where it was reported that he had made the following statement upon being charged:

“Not guilty of the charge that you have put to me tonight. At the time I was a police informer for Special Branch. On the night of the death of Patrick Finucane I informed Special Branch on two occasions by telephone of a person who was to be shot. I did not know at the time of the [name of the] person who was to be shot.” [50]
Stobie’s solicitor Joe Rice told the court that his client was a “paid Crown agent” from 1987 until 1990 and that he gave the police information on two occasions before the Finucane murder which was not acted upon. In addition Joe Rice claimed that,

“As a result of this information at another trial involving William Stobie on firearms charges on January 23 1991, the crown offered no evidence and a finding of ‘not guilty’ was entered on both counts. My instructions are that the bulk of the evidence here today has been known to the authorities for almost 10 years. He will say that this murky web of deceit and lies spun around this murder did not emanate from him and he looks forward to the truth coming out at the inevitable trial.”
6.9 Now that his part in the Finucane murder was in the public domain and he was in trouble with the law, Stobie gave Ed Moloney permission to tell the whole story. On 27th June Ed Moloney published a very detailed account of what Stobie had told him in the Sunday Tribune. On 29th June detectives from Stevens’ team visited Ed Moloney and asked him for his interview notes with Stobie. Ed Moloney refused to give them up. On 8th July the RUC, acting on behalf of the Stevens team, applied to Belfast County Court for an order under paragraph 3 of Schedule 7 of the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1989 compelling him to hand over his notes. The order was granted after an ex-parte hearing at which Ed Moloney was not present. The penalty for failing to comply with such an order is an unlimited fine and/or up to five years’ imprisonment.

6.10 Ed Moloney applied to have the order set aside. He also sought discovery of Mulholland’s witness statement, the summary of Stobie’s interviews in 1990, Stobie’s witness statement of 23.6.99, and the two-page statement in support of the application for the order, presented to the court on 8.7.99. He eventually obtained Stobie’s statement of 23rd June and the statement made in support of the application, but he has not been allowed to have copies of Mulholland’s statement to the Stevens team or the summary of Stobie’s 1990 interviews with the RUC.

6.11 While Ed Moloney was waiting for his case to be heard, Stobie applied for bail. The High Court heard his application on 3rd August. The prosecution told the court that Stobie had denied any involvement in the Finucane murder when he was interviewed by the RUC in 1990. Stobie was denied bail. The situation now was that Stobie was claiming that he had admitted his part in the murder back in 1990 and that his Special Branch handlers had failed to prevent the murder or to apprehend the perpetrators. Ed Moloney had published an article confirming that Stobie had told him the same in 1990, but the crown was saying that this was all untrue, while at the same time denying Ed Moloney access to the documents which would establish the truth of the matter.

6.12 On 22nd August Ed Moloney published another article in the Sunday Tribune explaining why he had refused to hand his notes of his interviews with Stobie to the police. He said that to do so would not only be a breach of the journalists’ code of ethics, but it would have the effect of making it impossible for him to continue working as a journalist because no-one would want to give him information if they feared a court could compel him to breach their confidentiality. Furthermore, he pointed out that UDA members might seek to murder him if he handed over information that incriminated them. If any journalist was forced to reveal confidential information in such circumstances, it would have a chilling effect on the whole profession of journalism. Journalists should not be forced to become police informers. The police had known all about Stobie’s role in the Finucane murder since 1990 and did not need his notes to establish those facts. Neil Mullholland had also refused to hand over his interview notes in 1990, but had not found himself being taken to court as was Ed Moloney.

6.13 When Ed Moloney’s case was heard on 23rd August, the police admitted that Stobie had indeed made admissions concerning his role when he was interviewed by the RUC in 1990. Detective Chief Inspector Richard Turner of the Stevens team said that Stobie had admitted supplying the weapons for the Finucane murder and disposing of the principal murder weapon afterwards.

6.14 On 2nd September Judge Hart ruled Ed Moloney must disclose the documents. He found that, in view of Ed Moloney’s declaration that he would not appear as a prosecution witness against Stobie, his notes would not be admissible in evidence unless he appeared for the defence. He found that Stevens did not need Ed Moloney’s notes in order to evaluate Mulholland’s evidence because Ed Moloney’s article of 27th June contained sufficient information to enable Stevens to decide whether or not Mulholland’s evidence was credible. However, the judge held that Ed Moloney’s article contained other information not covered by Mulholland’s evidence which was potentially of substantial value to the police investigation. He also held that Ed Moloney was not justified in giving Stobie an undertaking in the terms he did. Stobie has abandoned the right to confidentiality by agreeing to have his name and details of his crimes published. The public interest in the freedom of the press was outweighed by the value Ed Moloney’s notes would have for the police investigation. Ed Moloney was given seven days to produce the documents. The judge stipulated that the notes must be returned to Ed Moloney as soon as possible and that they must only be used for the purpose of the investigation of the Finucane murder and any criminal proceedings arising from that investigation.

6.15 Ed Moloney took an action for judicial review against the judge’s ruling. On 21st September he again applied to the court for discovery of Stobie’s 1990 police interview notes. He was again denied access to these crucial documents. On 23rd September the High Court heard his application for judicial review. The case ended on 28th September and judgment was reserved.

6.16 On 5th October Stobie was granted bail after the court was told that it had been misled on 3rd August concerning the admissions he made in 1990. Extracts from his RUC interview notes were referred to in court and corroborated all that Ed Moloney had said in his article of 27th June about Stobie’s role in the Finucane murder and about what Stobie had told Special Branch about the murder. On 12th January 2000 he was further remanded until 9th March.

6.17 The only difference between the case against Stobie in 1990 and that in 1999 is that in 1990 Mullholland refused to sign a statement detailing his knowledge, whereas now he has done so and handed over his interview notes. Such a statement would not have been crucial to a conviction in 1990, nor is it today, because Stobie had confessed. Equally, Ed Moloney’s notes are inessential to the case against Stobie and in any case will not be admissible in evidence because Ed Moloney will refuse to appear as a witness against Stobie.

6.18 According to evidence given at the inquest by DS Simpson, fourteen people were interviewed by the police in connection with Patrick Finucane’s murder. He testified:

“We are reasonably certain that the main perpetrators of the murder were among these suspects but no evidence is presently available to sustain a charge of murder, but enquiries are ongoing … None of these 14 persons I interviewed in connection with Mr Finucane’s death had any connection with the security forces.”
Stobie was obviously one of these 14 men, and he certainly had a connection with the security forces; he was a Special Branch informer. One of the many questions arising from the recent revelations must be why he, and for that matter the other 13, were not interviewed by Stevens’ first two investigations.

6.19 On 27th October 1999 the High Court quashed the disclosure order against Ed Moloney. Carswell LCJ ruled that the trial judge had misdirected himself as to the potential value of Ed Moloney’s notes to Stevens’ investigation. Stevens indicated that he would not appeal against the ruling.

6.20 British Irish RIGHTS WATCH is at a loss to understand why the Stevens team ever pursued Ed Moloney, whose career and liberty they put at risk, rather than seeking to track down those who murdered Patrick Finucane, especially those who planned or colluded in his murder. Stobie’s role has been known since 1990, and Ed Moloney was not in a position to add anything to what the police already knew. The role played by other loyalists, mentioned in his article of 27th June, was explained explicitly in Deadly Intelligence, which has been in the hands of the authorities since February 1999.

6.21 Stevens knew that Ed Moloney’s notes would not be admissible in court, unless he appeared as a witness, and that the journalist had already said he would not testify for the prosecution. He knew that Ed Moloney’s notes contained nothing new, since he had made everything he knew public. Stevens himself had claimed that he knew “absolutely” and “beyond a shadow of doubt” [51]who had murdered Patrick Finucane. It is difficult to see what purpose would have been served by having access to Ed Moloney’s notes, unless it was to compare what Stobie had told Mulholland with what he had told Moloney. It is difficult to see what use this would be to the prosecution, but any inconsistencies thrown up by such an exercise might certainly have been useful to anyone who wanted to undermine Stobie’s claim to have been a Special Branch informer.

6.22 In September 1999 the Stevens team arrested two more men, Paul Givens and William Hutchinson. Each has been charged on three counts of possession of information of use to terrorists before June 1989[52] . We do not believe these cases have any connection with the murder of Patrick Finucane.

6.23 On 3rd November 1999, a week after the collapse of the case against Ed Moloney, the Stevens team arrested three men, whose names were not released but are known to us. These men were named in Deadly Intelligence as being prime suspects for the murders of Patrick Finucane, Gerard Slane and others. On 8th November it was reported that the men had been released without charge .[53] On 10th November 1999, Stevens arrested two more men. It appears that they have not been charged.

6.24 On 1st December 1999 it was announced that Deputy Assistant Commissioner Hugh Orde of the Metropolitan Police had taken over day-today responsibility for Stevens 3 in view of Stevens’ appointment as Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, which commences in February 2000 .[54]

6.25 On 24th January 2000 the Independent newspaper printed a number of revelations concerning the present Stevens investigation which had every appearance of having come directly from the Stevens team [55]. The paper alleged that Stevens had identified a three-man team of loyalists who carried out the murder and another team of three who acted as a backup squad and were parked nearby during the murder. It claimed that all six names had been passed to the DPP, and that Stevens had recommended that they be charged with murder. The newspaper claims that they were “debriefed by the UDA after questioning by detectives from Stevens 3”. The article said that DNA samples had been obtained from at least one of the murder weapons and from a balaclava worn by one of the killers. The Stevens team was also said to be in possession witness accounts and forensic material “believed to support” claims that the RUC failed to act on warnings in order to prevent the murder. They also have evidence from former RUC officers and informers, and from a tape-recording, supporting Stobie’s claims to have warned his Special Branch handlers. The investigation is using fingerprints and DNA material to research possible collusion on the part of army and RUC personnel. The newspaper also highlights the extraordinary security measures being taken by the Stevens team in order to safeguard their investigation from outside interference. The newspaper says that the final report of the investigation is not expected until 2001.

6.26 These revelations raise more questions than they answer. It seems very likely that the men arrested by Stevens were previously questioned by the RUC, yet do not appear to have been arrested then . The existence of DNA evidence on a weapon and a balaclava ought surely to have been known to the original RUC investigation, but was not mentioned at the inquest. The investigation so far appears to have concentrated on the loyalists who carried out the murder, rather than the collusion aspects. Stevens’ ability to identify the perpetrators highlights the RUC’s apparent failure to do so. The extreme security required by the investigation suggests that Sir John Stevens is taking no chances, after the previous fire in his office, of any further attempt to wreck the investigation, whether by the security forces or loyalists. A burning question raised by the newspaper coverage is that of why Stevens was not able to reach this stage in either of his two earlier investigations. It is evident that Stevens 3 will not answer any of these questions; only a public inquiry can do so.

6.27 None of the arrests made by Stevens so far has shed new light on the murder of Patrick Finucane. Even the latest revelations, which have not so far as can be ascertained resulted in arrests, contain little fresh evidence. However, Stobie’s arrest has shed considerable light on the role of the RUC and has also raised further serious questions about the role of the DPP.

7.1 In Deadly Intelligence we alleged that the RUC may have been involved in the murder of Patrick Finucane in the following ways:

· members of the RUC suggested that the UDA kill Patrick Finucane
· the RUC sent a report to Douglas Hogg which prompted his remark in Parliament that some solicitors were “unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA”
· RUC Special Branch had detailed information about the plot to murder Patrick Finucane but did nothing to prevent it or to protect him.
7.2 The first of these allegations was already in the public domain when we wrote our report. We are therefore making public here what we said about alleged RUC incitement of the murder:

“[BBC journalist] John Ware has reported on an interview he conducted with Tommy ‘Tucker’ Lyttle, head of the UDA at the time of the murder, shortly before Lyttle’s death. Lyttle alleged that the impetus for the murder came not from Nelson or the UDA, but from the RUC:
‘Lyttle also confirmed that the original idea to murder Patrick Finucane came from two RUC detectives. While a prominent UDA gunman was being held in Castlereagh, an officer entered the interrogation room and said to his colleague: “Have you put it to him yet?” They then suggested that the UDA shoot Finucane. Lyttle said that he was so astonished at this suggestion that he informed a regular contact in the RUC Special Branch: “I told him: ‘What the hell is going on in Castlereagh? Why is Finucane being pushed?”‘ The officer said that it would be “a bad blow for the Provos [the IRA] to have Finucane removed.” Did that amount to approval that he should be shot? “Put it this way,” said Lyttle, “He didn’t discourage the idea that he should be shot.'” “[56]

We named the prominent UDA gunman in our report, and also gave the names of two of the RUC officers we believe to have been involved.

7.3 Our second allegation concerns the sending of a report by the RUC to the Home Office on which Douglas Hogg based his infamous remarks in Parliament that “there are in Northern Ireland a number of solicitors who are unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA”. Sir John Hermon, who was the Chief Constable of the RUC at the time of the murder, has now spoken publicly about Hogg’s remarks. In a newspaper interview in May 1999[57] , he claimed that:

“Pat Finucane was associated with the IRA and he used his position as a lawyer to act as a contact between suspects in custody and republicans outside.”
He said that Hogg’s statement to the House of Commons prior to the murder was “based on fact”. This strongly suggests that there was indeed a report sent to Hogg and that Hermon had personal knowledge of its contents.

7.4 Stobie’s claim to have been an informer for RUC Special Branch has not been denied by the RUC, although at his first bail application on 5th August 1999 the prosecution informed the court that,

“As a result of inquiries today, there is no Special Branch information, record, or source showing that Stobie contacted the Special Branch at any stage on 12 February 1989.” [58]
However, at his bail hearing on 5th October 1999 his interview notes from 1990 were produced in court; they showed that he had named Special Branch handlers and had related all his attempts to keep Special Branch informed about the murder. If Stobie is telling the truth, it would appear that he contacted his Special Branch handlers at three crucial junctures during the planning of the murder, the murder itself, and its aftermath. [59] He says that he told his handlers when he was first approached and asked to supply the weapons. He claims that he did not know the identity of the intended victim, but that he did tell Special Branch the identity of those who asked for the weapons. He says he also informed his handlers when the guns were collected from him on the day of the murder. Then he says that he told his handlers when the murderers were about to deliver the guns back to him. If this is true, then it implies that the RUC knew that named UFF men had asked for weapons, but made no effort to keep them under surveillance; that they knew these men were about to commit a murder, but did nothing to prevent it; and that they knew when and where these men were due to deliver the guns back to Stobie, but made no attempt to arrest them. Furthermore, Stobie alleges that after the guns had been returned to him, Special Branch took them into their custody, but gave them back to him when their absence was in danger of exposing him as an informer. He also claims that one of the guns had been tampered with by the RUC and that he feared he was being set up by them to be murdered by his loyalist associates.

7.5 New evidence has also come to light that suggests that the RUC played some role in the murders of two other men whose cases we highlighted in Deadly Intelligence, Terence McDaid and Gerard Slane. In their submission [60]to the Independent Commission on Policing, the Police Authority for Northern Ireland discuss their difference of opinion with the Chief Constable over the amount of information he was prepared to disclose concerning a claim for damages against the RUC by “the relatives of two people killed by terrorists”. We understand that these claims were made by the relatives of Gerard Slane and Terence McDaid. It is clear from PANI’s submission that the Chief Constable had settled the claim on a shared basis with the Ministry of Defence. However, the Chief Constable had argued that,

“… the security and intelligence factors which lay behind the need to agree a settlement of the case on behalf of the RUC were too sensitive to be disclosed to the Authority.”
The settlement was ultimately shared between the Northern Ireland Office and the Ministry of Defence. On 2nd June 1999, in view of the Northern Ireland Office’s part in the settlement, we wrote to the Secretary of State asking for urgent replies to the following questions:

1. On the basis of what act(s) of commission or omission did the Chief Constable believe that the RUC needed to reach a settlement in these two cases?
2. What were the security and intelligence factors that were too sensitive to be disclosed to PANI?
She declined to answer our questions and in July passed them to the RUC and the Ministry of Defence .[61] We have yet to receive any reply from either body.

8.1 Alasdair Fraser, CB, QC, the Director of Public Prosecutions for Northern Ireland, has been in post throughout this decade. He or his office have made a series of decisions that, in the light of all the other information available, now require explanation.

8.2 As has been seen [62], Sir John Stevens had been so concerned about Brian Nelson’s role in the murder of Patrick Finucane that he raised those concerns with the Chief Constable and the DPP. Stevens interviewed Nelson under caution on 15th January 1990, and Nelson made a lengthy statement implicating himself in the murder of Patrick Finucane. He also made other statements implicating himself in a whole series of other murders. His statements should have sparked off a full-scale police investigation. The first questions arising for the DPP must be:

1. Why did the DPP not instigate further enquiries when Sir John Stevens alerted him to his concerns about Brian Nelson’s role?
2. Why did the DPP not authorise Sir John Stevens to investigate Patrick Finucane’s murder ?[63]
8.3 Brian Nelson originally stood indicted on 34 counts, including four counts of conspiracy to murder Alex Maskey, James Morgan, Patrick Monaghan and Brian Gillen, and two of aiding and abetting the murders of Gerard Slane and Terence McDaid. However, when he appeared in court on 22nd January 1990 Crown Counsel, John Creaney QC, added a 35th count, that of conspiracy to murder Terence McDaid, and requested that Nelson be re-arraigned on all counts. During the process of re-arraignment, Nelson pleaded not guilty to two counts, as follows:

1. Aiding and abetting the murder of Terence McDaid
2. Collecting information about Declan McDaid (visual sightings)
Mr Creaney then instructed the Clerk of the Court not to put 13 of the charges, as follows:
3. Collecting information about Declan McDaid (Electoral Register)
4. Aiding and abetting another to collect information re Declan McDaid
6. Collecting information about Alex Maskey
7. Aiding and abetting the murder of Gerard Slane
12. Collecting information about James Morgan (Electoral Register)
13. Ditto (his address)
14. Aiding and abetting another to collect information re James Morgan
16. Collecting information about Patrick Monaghan (visual sightings)
17. Ditto (his address)
18. Aiding and abetting another to collect information re Patrick Monaghan
20. Collecting information about a public house
21. Aiding and abetting another to collect information re Brian Gillen (photo)
23. Possession of sub-machine gun in suspicious circumstances. [64]
Nelson pleaded guilty to the rest of the counts as each was put to him. Mr Creaney then requested the court to allow all those charges to which Nelson had not pleaded guilty – i.e. the two to which he pleaded not guilty and the twelve that were not put – to remain on the books of the court but not to be proceeded with without the court’s permission. Most of the counts that were left on the books were relatively minor, with the exception of the 7th count of aiding and abetting the murder of Gerard Slane and the 23rd count of possession of a sub-machine gun. In this manner, a deal was struck which meant that a trial which was expected to have lasted for many days if not weeks was over in two short days. Since the only matters before the court were ones to which Nelson had pleaded guilty, there was no need to prove the facts on each of the remaining 21 counts.

8.4 Brian Nelson’s trial raises the following questions concerning the role of the DPP:

3. What were the terms of the deal done with Brian Nelson?
4. Why was a deal done with him?
5. Why was he not prosecuted for his role in the murder of Patrick Finucane?
6. Why was he not charged with conspiracy to murder Pat McGeown [65]or collecting information about him?
8.5 In June 1991, Tucker Lyttle, Tosh Lyttle, Winkie Dodds, Matt Kincaid and Eric McKee stood trial on charges arising out of the first Stevens inquiry. Between them, they faced 51 separate counts of possession of documents likely to be of use to terrorists, recording such information, planning acts of violence, and conspiracy to collect information. Tucker Lyttle alone was charged with issuing death threats against witnesses in a racketeering trial with intent to pervert the course of justice[66]. None of them was charged with murder or conspiracy to murder. On 3rd July 1991 Tucker Lyttle was sentenced to 7 years for possession of documents likely to be of use to terrorists [67]. Eric Mckee and Winkie Dodds were each sentenced to 6 years, Tosh Lyttle to 5 years, and Matt Kinkaid to 4 years [68].

8.6 In October 1990 charges against Sam Duddy and four other UDA/UFF members were dropped when it was decided not to use Nelson as a prosecution witness[69] . The other four men were James Spence, Joe English, Sammy McCormick and Billy Elliott [70].

8.7 A telling exchange between Desmond Boal QC, defending Nelson, and the trial judge, Lord Justice Kelly, sheds light not only on the failure of the authorities to bring the UFF to book, but also on the true nature of FRU’s Nelson project:

“Kelly: I have been asking myself that question all morning, what did he [Nelson] achieve at the end of the day? Of course he did, and I take the point immediately, save lives [71]but I think the intention really of the Colonel [Colonel Gordon Kerr, head of FRU, referred to at Nelson’s trial as Colonel J] was to, that he would try to bring down the organisation. Were any of these men prosecuted at all?

Boal: Yes.

Kelly: For acts of conspiracy to murder or attempted murder? I dealt with some of them I recall.

Boal: Not I think for…

Kelly: But only on charges of collecting information.

Boal: I think that’s right.

Kelly: But were any of them dealt with for more serious charges?

Boal: Not that I know of, my Lord, which is another irony of course. The basis of your Lordship’s question, the inference might be it’s because of Nelson that they haven’t in fact been brought to book. That I can tell the Court is not so. Nelson, may I say quite clearly, has never been asked to give evidence against these people.”

8.8 A deal had been done over Nelson’s own trial. As a result, a limited and in many respects misleading picture of FRU’s strategy had been disclosed. If Nelson was used as a supergrass, other more damaging details might emerge, especially if Nelson found himself being accused of involvement in other crimes for which he had not been tried.

8.9 Our research shows that at least 39 loyalists apart from Nelson can be identified from the information that would be before a public inquiry. These individuals were involved in at least 12 murders, 11 attempted murders, 18 conspiracies to murder, 51 other cases of targeting, one kidnapping, one wounding and one punishment shooting. We do not suggest that the material available is sufficient to ground a prosecution in each case, but we are concerned that Nelson’s role and the reluctance of the authorities to use him as a prosecution witness for fear of what he might expose about FRU’s operations meant that it was inevitable that this appalling catalogue of crime would go unremedied.

8.10 The question arising for the DPP here is:

7. Why was Brian Nelson not used as a witness?

8.11 After Nelson’s conviction, journalists John Ware and Geoffrey Seed made a Panorama programme about his role, “The Dirty War”, transmitted by BBC television on 8th June 1992. In the programme extracts from Nelson’s journal were broadcast, in which he admitted to involvement in a number of other murders, including that of Patrick Finucane. The programme also named other loyalists as having been involved in his murder. The programme alleged that Nelson had also targeted another lawyer, Paddy McGrory [72]. The transcript of the programme was referred to the Director of Public Prosecutions, who asked Sir John Stevens to investigate these allegations. Stevens completed his enquiries in January 1995, and submitted his final report to the DPP of Northern Ireland on 24th January 1995. On 17th February 1995 the DPP issued a direction of no prosecution to the Chief Constable of the RUC. It is not known why he reached this decision, which seems extraordinary in the face of Brian Nelson’s allegedly self-confessed part in the murders.

8.12 However, it was not in fact the Panorama programme that led to Stevens’ second inquiry. Geraldine Finucane, Patrick Finucane’s widow, had initiated a civil claim for damages against the Ministry of Defence and Brian Nelson personally in respect of her husband’s murder. It was Nelson’s threat that unless the civil proceedings were conducted and completed without his involvement, he would disclose FRU’s knowledge of this murder and other illegal activities by FRU that prompted the further police investigation.

8.13 Not even a summary of Stevens’ second report has ever been published. We believe that his inquiries focussed on the extent to which Nelson’s handlers and other members of the security forces may have been implicated in murder and other illegal acts. Respected journalist and commentator Tim Pat Coogan, in his book The Troubles[73] says that he understands that Stevens’ second report,

“… squarely implicate[s] four named members of the RUC as being involved in sectarian killings”.

8.14 We also believe that one of the reasons that the DPP was not able to prosecute anyone on the basis of the report was the refusal of members of FRU and others to co-operate with his inquiries. If we are right about this, this is a compelling argument for holding a public inquiry into the issues raised in our report.

8.15 The following questions arise for the DPP:

8. Why was Nelson not prosecuted for his part in the murder of Patrick Finucane on the basis of the new revelations in the Panorama programme?
9. Why was no member of FRU or the RUC prosecuted?
10. What charges did the DPP consider, and against whom?
11. Why did those loyalists who were charged as a result of the Stevens investigation not face more serious charges?
8.16 On 7th November 1989, Billy Stobie’s house was searched and weapons were found in the roof space. Stobie was arrested. On 8th November he was charged with unlawful possession of a sub-machine gun and a pistol. On 12th April 1990 he was granted bail despite being on a suspended sentence for a weapons conviction in 1987. On 13th September he was arrested and questioned about the Finucane murder. On 1st October Stobie’s trial for the firearms offences commenced but was halted when a prosecution witness, DC Cormack, mentioned Stobie’s criminal record, forcing the court to abandon the trial. Stobie alleges that this happened just after he threatened to reveal what he had told Special Branch about the Finucane case. The re-trial was scheduled to begin on 17th November, but was taken out of the list at the last moment. On 12th December the re-trial opened but was immediately adjourned. On 16th January 1991, the DPP decided not to prosecute Stobie for his part in the Finucane murder. At the end of January his re-trial was heard; no evidence was offered against Stobie on the firearms charges by the prosecution and a verdict of not guilty was entered. [74]

8.17 We have had sight of the depositions relating to the arms charges which Stobie faced in 1991. The weapons were found in the roof space of Stobie’s flat by the police [75]. Stobie was arrested and asked to explain the presence of the weapons. He failed to provide any credible explanation saying only that the weapons were not his and they must have been placed there by someone else [76]. In Northern Ireland, where weapons are found in a defendant’s property, the burden of proof reverses and the defendant must persuade the court of his/her innocence. The vast majority of such defendants are consequently found guilty. In the absence of any explanation from Stobie it is remarkable that the DPP would have ordered that the charges be withdrawn and not guilty verdicts be entered against him, especially since the RUC already knew that Stobie was a UFF quartermaster, and therefore a loyalist of some significance. Stobie himself, of course, has been reported as saying that he threatened to expose Special Branch’s inaction over the information he supplied about the murder of Patrick Finucane [77]. The DPP has refused to answer questions about this, claiming that the matter is sub judice [78], although it is difficult to see how this can be so, given that verdicts of not guilty were entered in January 1991.

8.18 Furthermore, despite the misleading information given to the High Court by the Crown at Stobie’s first bail hearing this year, it has now been confirmed that Stobie did make admissions concerning his role in the murder of Patrick Finucane when he was arrested in 1990. A file was passed to the DPP, but Stobie was not prosecuted. At the first bail hearing, Crown Counsel told the court that the

“… Director thought there was insufficient evidence against Stobie, principally because Mulholland refused to put his verbal account into evidential form. It would be open to the Director to proceed and compel Mulholland’s attendance and while he could be compelled, unlikely to give an account in open court. Information was available to the police but there was insufficient evidence to be used in court. It was not an officer who decided not to proceed, it was taken at the highest level, where it was decided that there was insufficient evidence.” [79]
However, as we now know, there was confession evidence against Stobie. This decision not to prosecute Stobie in relation to the murder of Patrick Finucane was taken on 16th January 1991, seven days before the dropping of the arms charges against Stobie [80]. It was, we note, taken “at the highest level”.

8.19 Stobie’s case gives rise to two more questions for the DPP:

12. Why were the firearms charges against Stobie dropped?
13. Why was he not charged in 1990 for his part in the murder of Patrick Finucane?

9.1 Patrick Finucane’s widow, Geraldine, is suing the Ministry of Defence and Brian Nelson over her husband’s murder. According to journalist John Ware:

“The Crown Solicitor’s office in Belfast has stated there is no evidence that the army or Nelson were involved. In a sworn affidavit the Crown claims to have disclosed to Finucane’s widow’s lawyers all relevant and material documents in their ‘possession, custody or power’. Such few disclosures as there have been include a heavily blanked out extract from one of the secret contact forms seized by military intelligence… However, her lawyers are ‘convinced that full and proper discovery has not been made’. And they are right… the Crown has failed to disclose at least one contact form which suggests that Nelson had a much more active role in the murder and that his army handlers must have known. Dated 2 March 1989, the document reveals that Nelson had compiled a ‘P’ card on Finucane.” [81]
We understand that a further 600 pages have since been disclosed. For legal reasons we are not allowed to comment on their content, or lack of content, or whether they constitute disclosure of “all relevant and material documents”. However, we understand that Geraldine Finucane’s lawyers are not satisfied that full disclosure has been made and that an application for discovery on oath for specific documentation, which was adjourned pending receipt of the 600 pages, will be renewed and augmented.

9.2 Geraldine Finucane has also sought disclosure of the witness statements taken by Stevens and others in connection with Brian Nelson’s trial. On 28th May 1999 the Lord Chief Justice, Sir Robert Carswell, refused her application.

9.3 She has also asked the DPP for the reasons for many of his decisions regarding the murder. To date she has received no reply.


10.1 At the same time that Deadly Intelligence was delivered, the Finucane family delivered a petition signed by over 1,000 lawyers worldwide calling for an inquiry into the murder of Patrick Finucane.

10.2 Support for such an inquiry has continued to grow. The following have so far expressed concern about the murder of Patrick Finucane and the issue of intimidation of lawyers:
· the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, Dato’ Param Cumaraswamy;
· Dr Claire Palley, UK nominee on the United Nations Commission on Human Rights;
· Peter Burns, Rapporteur on the UK for the Committee Against Torture;
· the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, which until recently advised the UK government on human rights in Northern Ireland;
· Viscount Colville of Culross QC, in his capacity as independent scrutineer of UK emergency laws;
· Sir Louis Blom-Cooper QC, Independent Commissioner for the Holding Centres;
· the Irish government;
· the European Parliament;
· Amnesty International;
· the International Commission of Jurists;
· the International Federation of Human Rights;
· the Committee on the Administration of Justice;
· British Irish RIGHTS WATCH;
· Liberty;
· the Haldane Society;
· Norwegian Helsinki Committee;
· BBC journalist John Ware;
· the American Bar Association;
· the Lawyers Committee on Human Rights;
· Human Rights Watch (formerly Helsinki Watch);
· the Law Society of Northern Ireland;
· the Law Society of England and Wales;
· the Law Society of Ireland;
· the General Council of the Bar of England & Wales;
· the General Council of the Bar of Northern Ireland;
· the General Council of the Bar of Ireland;
· the International Bar Association;
· the Society of Labour Lawyers;
· the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, USA;
· the International Association of Democratic Lawyers;
· the Association of the Bar of the City of New York
· the Patrick Finucane Centre, Northern Ireland;
· Springhill Community House, Northern Ireland;
· Relatives for Justice, Northern Ireland;
· the International Centre for Human Rights and Economic Development, Canada;
· the Brehon Law Society, USA;
· the International League for Human Rights;
· the Lawyers Alliance, USA.

10.3 Possibly the most significant recent addition to that list has been the Law Society of Northern Ireland, of which Patrick Finucane was a member. On 11th May 1999 almost 700 solicitors of all shades of opinion from all over Northern Ireland attended an extraordinary general meeting of the Law Society. Among those present were solicitors who have represented loyalists, have represented the Ministry of Defence, and have represented the RUC, as well as those who have represented defendants who have been agents and informers. This was the most representative group yet to have examined these issues, and the best informed. They reached their decision after long and careful debate, and it was virtually unanimous. The Law Societies and Bar Councils throughout England and Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland all support an inquiry, as does the Irish government and the United Nations and lawyers’ and human rights groups throughout the world. The only significant bodies that have yet to support an independent judicial inquiry into these matters are the RUC, the Ministry of Defence and the Northern Ireland Office, all of whom would be under scrutiny were such an inquiry to take place.


11.1 The callous murder of Rosemary Nelson shows that, unless measures are taken to deal with our allegations, lawyers in Northern Ireland will continue to be at risk. Lawyers cannot choose their clients, yet they risk being murdered because certain clients choose them, notwithstanding the ceasefires. The poisoned atmosphere that gave rise to her murder, and to that of Patrick Finucane must be dispelled, and dispelled for good. When Douglas Hogg made his infamous remarks in the House of Commons not long before Patrick Finucane was murdered, Seamus Mallon MP told the House:

“… Following [this] statement, people’s lives are in grave danger. People who have brought cases against the European Court of Human Rights will be suspected.”
It is a scandal that, nearly eleven years later, those words should still resonate.

11.2 British Irish RIGHTS WATCH has made serious allegations of security force collusion in a large number of deaths and other illegal acts, of which the murders of Patrick Finucane, Terence McDaid and Gerard Slane are but the tip of an iceberg. We have said that those three died because of systematic policies adopted by the security services involving British military intelligence and the RUC. There is also considerable evidence of an official cover-up.

11.3 The overriding question that emerges from this murkiest of pictures is that of who sanctioned those policies. If what we allege is true, then the lives of many people in Northern Ireland have been damaged, and in some cases destroyed, by the actions of agents of the state. This is not an issue that can be swept under the carpet. Its aftermath will go on poisoning the atmosphere in Northern Ireland and making a successful resolution of the peace process more difficult. If people cannot trust the police, the army, the courts, DPP, or ultimately the government how can they be expected to have faith in society itself? There is only one honourable response to the allegations we have made, and substantiated to the best of our ability. The government, which already has under its control all the answers to the questions we have raised, must establish an independent judicial inquiry without any further prevarication.


[1] 21.11.1999, 28.11.1999 and 5.12.1999

[2] Belfast Telegraph, 25.11.1999

[3] Sunday Times, 19.12.1999

[4] By Mainstream Publishing, Edinburgh

[5] Newsletter, 25.11.1999

[6] p. 105

[7] p. 101

[8] Chapter 5

[9] p. 187

[10] p. 17

[11] See, for example, p. 104

[12] Irish News, 5.11.1999

[13] Sunday Times, 7.11.1999

[14] We understand that at least one of those visited by the RUC to be warned that the loyalists had information about them had moved house in 1998, and that the loyalists had his most recent address.

[15] Observer, 7.11.1999

[16] Observer, 5.12.1999

[17] Report on the mission of the Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Nations, E/CN.4/1998/39/Add.4, paragraphs 16 and 17

[18] As he confirmed in his oral presentation to the Commission in April 1999, when he said, “In the last two years, I had expressed concern for her personal security and raised the threats on her life in communications to the Government of the United Kingdom.”

[19] Statement of Rosemary Nelson before the International Operations and Human Rights Sub-committee of the House International Relations Committee on Human Rights in Northern Ireland, 29.9.1998

[20] Mistaken Identity, Report to the United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, British Irish RIGHTS WATCH, November 1998

[21] Letter from the Chief Constable to British Irish RIGHTS WATCH, 11.11.1998. The letter is quoted in full

[22] Irish News, 16.3.1999

[23] Equal Protection under the Law, statement by 33 Northern Ireland solicitors, issued on 14.1.1998

[24] See note 19 above

[25] RUC Press Release, 16.3.1999

[26] RUC Press Release, 30.3.1999

[27] Transcript of an interview which the Chief Constable gave to Barry Cowan for the BBC Radio Ulster programme Seven Days on Sunday, 28.3.1999

[28] RUC Press Release, 12.4.1999

[29] Interview with Colin Port, Irish News, 1.5.1999

[30] Exclusive interview with Colin Port, Irish News, 22.7.1999

[31] Rosemary Nelson: The Life and Death of a Human Rights Defender, Pat Finucane Centre, Derry, 1999

[32] A Commentary by the Chairman of the ICPC on the Review of RUC Investigations into Complaints by or on behalf of Mrs Rosemary Nelson conducted by Commander N G Mulvihill Metropolitan Police¸ Paul Donnelly, 28.4.99
[33] Statement made in accordance with Article 9, paragraph (8) of the police (Northern Ireland) Order 1987, relating to complaints against officers of the Royal Ulster Constabulary made by Lawyers Alliance for Justice in Ireland on behalf of Rosemary Nelson, Solicitor, and Mr Colin Duffy, ICPC, 22.3.1999

[34] See note 32 above

[35] See The Murder of Rosemary Nelson, December 1999, British Irish RIGHTS WATCH

[36] Letter from Liz O’Donnell to Mo Mowlam, 13.4.1999

[37] Oral presentation, Human Rights Commission, 12.4.1999

[38] Transcript, Careless Talk, Panorama, BBC TV, broadcast 21.6.1999

[39] Letter from Northern Ireland Office to Sam Scott Miller, 23.7.1999

[40] Human Rights and Legal Defense in Northern Ireland: The Intimidation of Defense Lawyers, the Murder of Patrick Finucane, Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, New York, February 1993, p. 60

[41] Letter to British Irish RIGHTS WATCH from Sir John Stevens, 17.1.1995

[42] Northern Ireland: An Emergency Ended?, p. 33

[43] At the Crossroads: Human Rights and the Northern Ireland Peace Process, Ending the Emergency, Judges and Laywers, Lawyers Committee for Human Rights, New York, December 1996, p.110

[44] British Government’s Response to Report by the Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, 6.4.1999

[45] PQ Ref No 1559J

[46] RUC press release, 28.4.1999

[47] Irish Times, 29.4.1999

[48] Letter to Peter Madden from Sir John Stevens, 23.4.1999

[49] Sunday Tribune, 27.6.99

[50] Finucane Accused ‘Worked For RUC’, Newsletter, 25th June 1999

[51] Please see paragraphs 5.5 and 5.6 above

[52] Irish News, 24.9.1999

[53] Irish News, 8.11.1999

[54] Scotland Yard press release, 1.12.1999

[55] Finucane murder names sent to DPP and Elite squad edges nearer proof of RUC collusion, Independent, 24.1.2000

[56] Time to come clean over the army’s role in the “Dirty War”, New Statesman, 24.4.1998

[57] Daily Telegraph, 10.5.1999

[58] CAJ note of bail application, 5.8.1999

[59] Sunday Tribune, 27.6.1999

[60] Policing – A New Beginning, Police Authority for Northern Ireland, paragraph 8

[61] Letter to British Irish RIGHTS WATCH from the Secretary of State, 16.7.1999

[62] Please see paragraph 5.9 above

[63] Please see paragraph 5.10 above

[64] Trial transcript, 22.1.1992, p. 1 – 8

[65] The other man who was in the photograph of Patrick Finucane that Brian

Nelson is alleged to have passed to the murderers

[66] Irish News, 21.6.1991

[67] Northern Ireland A Political Directory 1969 – 1993, W D Flackes and Sydney Elliott, Blackstaff Press, revised edition 1994,p. 314

[68] Newsletter, 4.7.1991

[69] The Red Hand: Protestant Paramilitaries in Northern Ireland, Steve Bruce, Oxford University Press, 1992, p.264

[70] Irish News, 11.10.1990

[71] In fact, there is little evidence to support this contention

[72] Paddy McGrory, now deceased, had represented the relatives of the three IRA members shot on Gibraltar by the SAS

[73] Hutchinson, 1995, p.264

[74] Sunday Tribune, 27.6.1999

[75] Statement of Sgt George Palmer McDonald, R v William Alfred Stobie

[76] Statement of Det Sgt David William George Kildea, R v William Alfred Stobie

[77] Sunday Tribune, 27.6.1999

[78] Letters to the Committee on the Administration of Justice from the DPP, 30.7.1999 and 18.8.1999

[79] Note taken at bail hearing by the Committee on the Administration of Justice, 3.8.1999

[80] Letter from Ms P Atchison, Department of the Director of Public Prosecutions to the Committee on the Administration of Justice, 18th August 1999

[81] Time to come clean over the army’s role in the “Dirty War”, New Statesman, 24.4.1998

British Irish Rights Watch