Belfast Telegraph

Gerry Adams may be quizzed as Stack murder probe continues

Detectives in the Republic have started conducting a fresh round of interviews with the family of murdered prison officer Brian Stack, as they attempt to identify the senior IRA figure who admitted the terror group was behind the 1983 killing.

Officers from the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation (NBCI) are attempting to build a profile of the man, who met the victim's sons, Austin and Oliver Stack, at an undisclosed location along the border in August 2013.

The meeting was organised by Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams, who brought the Stack brothers to meet the IRA leader in a blacked-out van.

It's understood gardaí met with Austin Stack for six hours in recent days as they step up their inquiries.

And it's now expected that gardaí will also interview Mr Adams, who has to date refused to divulge the name of the individual who confirmed the IRA's responsibility.

Opposition TDs have said that any refusal to pass over the man's name to the gardaí would represent an obstruction of a live murder investigation.

However, Mr Adams has said that the meeting was predicated on the principle of confidentiality and that he does not intend to breach that agreement.

Gardaí are understood to have the names of a number of senior republican figures, who they believe may be able to assist in the investigation.

Further interviews are expected to take place in the coming weeks in a bid to identify the IRA figure.

The man was not disguised when he handed the Stack brothers a statement, in which the IRA expressed regret for the killing of their father.

The IRA leader also revealed that a man had been disciplined following an internal IRA investigation.

The meeting took place in a house, which gardaí believe may be located Northern Ireland, close to the border with Co Louth.

Last night, Austin Stack said he will not give up his fight for justice for his family.

"It is incredible that as we enter 2017, the leader of a political party can put on record in the Dáil that he will not cooperate with a murder inquiry," Mr Stack said.

"The most basic principle of republicanism is that all citizens are treated as equals.

"In this instance, Gerry Adams wants to be treated differently to other citizens. He wants different standards to be applied to him than any other citizen."

The Stack case has been discussed among senior ranking gardaí, after Mr Adams sent an email to the Garda Commissioner on February 23.

In the email, Mr Adams named four individuals who he says may have information in relation to the murder, which took place outside a boxing stadium in Dublin.

Two of the individuals - TDs Martin Ferris and Dessie Ellis - were named in the Dáil by Fine Gael TD Alan Farrell. Both say they have no information about the murder. The third individual named is a senior Sinn Féin politician who plays a direct role in devising party strategy.

The fourth man served as a senior IRA commander in Dublin.

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