The trio are taking action now due to the Government’s Troubles amnesty plans
Victims of IRA bombings in England want Gerry Adams questioned in public over his alleged involvement with the IRA, according to one of three people suing the former Sinn Fein president in the High Court in London.
Jonathan Ganesh, injured in the 1996 attack on London’s Docklands, said they had to act now because of the UK Government’s plan to deliver what amounts to an amnesty to anyone involved in incidents linked to the Troubles.
Mr Ganesh is suing Mr Adams for £1 along with two people injured in the 1996 Manchester bombing and the 1973 attack on the Old Bailey criminal court.
The former Sinn Fein leader did not respond to a request for comment, but in a statement issued to the Mail on Sunday, a spokesperson said: “Mr Adams rejects the claims made in the notice of legal action. His solicitor will deal with it.”
Mr Adams has always denied any membership of the IRA and has denied any involvement in their terror campaign during the decades of the Troubles. He has never been successfully prosecuted for any IRA activities.
A former security guard at Canary Wharf, Mr Ganesh revealed Mr Adams was served papers personally on Friday.
He said: “This action is very transparent. The situation is quite clear — the government, in a very short time, is going to change the law so that anybody involved in the Troubles will never be prosecuted in either the criminal or civil courts. We had to take the action because there will not be a later.”
Mr Ganesh added the claimants are suing for £1 as they have no interest in money. He and the two others taking the action are suing on behalf of all victims because they believe Mr Adams “played a part in the IRA” and want “the opportunity to hold someone accountable”.
On whether the claimants believe Mr Adams was directly involved in the three attacks, Mr Ganesh said: “That is a thing that will evolve during the court proceedings.”
But there is, he added, testimony from former IRA members that he played a leading role in the organisation.
“We definitely want to see him in court. We want to give him every opportunity to set the record straight,” he said.
According to the legal papers filed, the three accuse Mr Adams of being behind the IRA’s bombing campaigns.
The February 1996 bomb in London’s Docklands led to the deaths of two people and injuries to more than 100. Later that same year in Manchester, a 3,000lb truck bomb was detonated near the city’s Arndale Centre, injuring more than 200.
Those bringing the claims are seeking a nominal damages fee of just £1 in the case, with the suit funded through CrowdJustice, an online platform specifically designed to raise money for legal actions.
The two others suing are Barry Laycock, a rail worker injured in the Manchester attack, and John Clark, a former police officer caught up in the Old Bailey bombing.
Law firm McCue Jury & Partners, who are representing the three claimants, successfully sued former IRA man John Downey in 2019 over his role in the 1982 Hyde Park bombing which killed four soldiers in the Royal Household Cavalry.
Mr Ganesh added the claimants aim is to get justice not just for those who died in the three bombings but all victims of the IRA’s “despicable campaign”.