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Jean McConville's daughter still hopeful of seeing Gerry Adams in court

By Joanne Sweeney

Published 11/07/2015

Helen McKendry with a picture of her mother
Helen McKendry with a picture of her mother

The eldest daughter of Jean McConville has said she still has hope that Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams will be charged in connection with her mother's abduction and murder.

A report in the Irish News yesterday said the Public Prosecution Service (PPS) will not bring any charges against Mr Adams over the death of the mother-of-10.

But Helen McKendry insists he was directly responsible for the murder of her mother in 1972.

The grandmother told the Belfast Telegraph: "I still have hope in the justice system here at the moment."

She added that she was poised to launch a private civil action against the party leader within weeks regardless of whether the PPS brings charges.

The PPS is still considering evidence gathered by the PSNI during the arrest and four days of questioning at Antrim police station over 13 months ago. It is due to give its decision by the end of the month.

However, the report yesterday claimed that the PPS is set to announce that Mr Adams will not be charged in connection with the murder of the from west Belfast. The PPS has dismissed the report as "speculative and premature".

A PPS spokesperson added: "No further prosecutorial decisions have been reached in connection with the murder of Jean McConville.

"It is anticipated that the processes involved in taking this decision will be concluded before the end of July."

Mrs McKendry said: "I got a phone call from the police to tell me the PPS has not made up their mind yet and won't until the end of July. What happens then I just don't know but I'm still very hopeful that we will get good news then and they go ahead and prosecute him and the others.

"Plan B for me is that I will take a civil action against him because if the PPS can't get into court, I will, as that man thinks he's God and the courts will protect him.

Mr Adams (right) was arrested and questioned by the PSNI over four days last May by detectives following up on allegations made during the controversial Boston College interview recordings of former IRA and loyalist combatants. Mrs McConville was dragged from her home by a group of men and women - purportedly IRA members - before she was beaten and murdered with her body buried in a hidden spot.

She became one of the most well-known of the IRA victims known as the Disappeared. Her body was eventually recovered in 2003 in Co Louth.

Mr Adams has always denied any involvement with Mrs McConville's murder and has previously offered Mrs McKendry his full help in bringing to justice those who were involved.

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