Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Gerry Adams' niece Aine reveals: 'The Beard tried to get me to gag Press over abuse'

Aine Adams, the daughter of Liam Adams
Aine Adams, the daughter of Liam Adams

Gerry Adams tried to prevent the public finding out about his paedophile brother Liam, it has emerged.

The Sinn Fein president's niece Aine Dahlstrom has said he asked her to help bring about a court ban on the reporting of her father's horrific sexual abuse.

However, Aine, now 40, said she rejected her uncle's attempts to prevent the truth emerging.

On Tuesday, Liam Adams (58) was convicted or raping and abusing his daughter Aine over a six-year period. The abuse began when she was just four years old in 1977 and continued until 1983.

Speaking after the conviction, Aine said the Sinn Fein chief, who once reported her mother to social services for having a "dirty" house and poor "hygiene", was always terrified the story of his brother's crimes would be revealed.

She explained that in 2007 he heard that a local newspaper was planning to cover it.

"He frantically phoned me about 20 times," said Aine.

"He wanted to obtain a court injunction with my help to stop the story. He said he needed to make sure it didn't get into the press to protect me. Looking back, he was buttering me up. It was all about PR and his own image."

After Aine revealed her abuse in UTV's 2009 Insight Programme, Gerry Adams again told her not to speak to the media.

"He advised me against talking to journalists," she said. "'You've no experience dealing with the press,' he said."

Aine said that shortly afterwards she broke contact with him. She also claimed that contrary to what her uncle, whom she refers to as 'The Beard', portrayed, they don't have a loving relationship.

Aine and her mother Sally first reported the abuse to the RUC in January 1987 but withdrew their complaint days later as they thought some officers appeared more interested in using them to get information on IRA activity.

In March 1987, Aine, Sally and Gerry Adams went to Buncrana, Co Donegal, to confront his brother over what he had had done, but Liam denied raping Aine.

The former West Belfast MP has said he believed his niece but that he didn't report the abuse to police himself as Aine had already done so.

In 2000, Liam Adams confessed to his brother that he had raped Aine, but Gerry Adams failed to report this vital information to police for nine years.

After his brother's conviction, Gerry Adams again tried to silence the media and stop questions about his own behaviour by requesting respect and privacy for his niece.

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