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Eddie Copeland: Provo godfather survived shooting by rogue soldier

By Staff Reporter

Published 10/09/2015

He was once named in Parliament as an IRA godfather and the mastermind behind the Shankill Road atrocity.

Copeland, whose father John was shot dead by a solider in 1971, was also named by a Crown lawyer as "the senior IRA man in the north of the city (Belfast)" after he was charged with abducting and threatening to kill a drug dealer. But when the case came to trial the charges were withdrawn.

In 1993 he was nearly killed by a British soldier.

He sustained bullet wounds to the chest and abdomen when the soldier opened up on him and other mourners outside the home of Shankill bomber Thomas Begley.

The soldier was later jailed for 10 years and Copeland received £27,500 for the injuries he suffered in the shooting.

He was also at the centre of a political storm after being awarded £60,000 for injuries he received when a booby-trap bomb exploded under his car. He was reversing away from his mother's home in December 1996 when the device went off.

The NIO tried to block the compensation claim on the grounds that he had been engaged in terrorism.

Belfast Telegraph

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