Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 29 July 2014

US tapes 'may implicate IRA chiefs'

MP Gregory Campbell said senior IRA members could be implicated after a court agreed to hand over secret interviews with a convicted bomber

A DUP MP has said many senior IRA members could be implicated after a court agreed to hand over top secret interviews with a convicted Old Bailey car bomber to the authorities.

Boston College must give police the recordings by its researchers of oral history project talks with Dolours Price by next month, after an appeals court in the US rejected an effort to stop their release.

The British Government has been seeking the interviews.

East Londonderry MP Gregory Campbell said: "This is a step closer to establishing if there is information in the tapes that might be of assistance to the authorities in Northern Ireland.

"This could lead to the investigation of many senior personnel within the IRA and other groups about matters they were involved in, and if that is the case it would be welcome."

Price participated in the car bombing of the Old Bailey in London on March 8 1973. The explosion injured more than 200 people and likely caused another person's death of heart failure.

She and sister Marian Price were arrested along with senior Sinn Fein member and former junior minister Gerry Kelly and others. They were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment, but later released.

Friday's ruling by the 1st US Circuit Court of Appeals means the interview with bomber Dolours Price will be given to police next month. Boston College in Massachusetts is still trying to quash a broader order for other materials from its project.

The college's Belfast Project participants say the interviews were supposed to be secret until their deaths. But Northern Ireland police probing the IRA's 1972 killing of Belfast woman Jean McConville, a mother of 10 branded as a British Army spy by the IRA, want the recordings.

The university did not appeal against a district court order last year to turn over the Price interviews, though project director Ed Moloney and ex-IRA member Anthony McIntyre did. The appeal court ruled they had no right to stop the release.

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