Belfast Telegraph

Independent review into how PSNI discloses information on legacy cases announced

February 1992: Five killed in Ormeau Road shooting
February 1992: Five killed in Ormeau Road shooting

An independent review will be carried out looking into the methods the PSNI use to disclose information in respect of historic cases to the Police Ombudsman, the Department for Justice has announced.

The move comes after Police Ombudsman Michael Maguire said "significant, sensitive information" around an atrocity at a bookmakers in south Belfast was not made available to his investigators.

Five people were killed on February 5 1992, when members of the loyalist Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF) opened fire on the Sean Graham bookmakers shop on the lower Ormeau Road.

Dr Maguire's office said the non-disclosed material, which it has now obtained, has opened new lines of inquiry in its investigation into the Ormeau Road shootings, as well as activities of loyalist paramilitaries in the north west between 1988 and 1994, and its probe into the murder of teenager Damien Walsh at a coal depot in west Belfast in 1993.

The PSNI has apologised, putting the incident down to human error.

On Tuesday afternoon the Department of Justice said it has requested that Criminal Justice Inspection Northern Ireland (CJI) undertake an independent review into how the PSNI disclosed information in historic cases.

The Chief Inspector of Criminal Justice, Brendan McGuigan, has confirmed that the review will be prioritised within its future programme of inspections and reviews. CJI will commence work on preparing the Terms of Reference for the review immediately.

Mr McGuigan has also indicated that he anticipates the completion of a report in six months.

CJI is an independent statutory inspectorate with responsibility for inspecting all aspects of the criminal justice system in Northern Ireland apart from the judiciary.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

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