Belfast Telegraph

Jean McConville's family ask Gerry Adams to support public inquiry in wake of Ivor Bell acquittal

IRA murder victim Jean McConville's son Michael outside Belfast Crown Court. October 17, 2019.
IRA murder victim Jean McConville's son Michael outside Belfast Crown Court. October 17, 2019.
IRA murder victim Jean McConville with her family

The family of Jean McConville has spoken of their "bitter disappontment'" that evidence allegedly linking Ivor Bell to her abduction and murder, cannot be used in the prosecution case against him.

They also called on former Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams to support their "need and demand for a full public inquiry".

"We've heard Gerry Adams often call for inquiries ... will he support this one?".

The family said a full-blown public inquiry was needed because while they "may not have got justice, we have got some truth.  But this cannot finish here".

The statement, handed to waiting press outside Belfast Crown Court, by Mrs McConville's son, Michael, began by saying it had not been easy listening to the alleged taped confession of Mr Bell, "and we are bitterly disappointed that it cannot be used in evidence in this case".

Later it read that "for 20 years the IRA denied they had anything to do with the murder and disappearance and they only admitted it when it suited them.

ULSTER Mc (2).jpg
IRA murder victim Jean McConville's son Archie outside Belfast Crown Court. October 17, 2019.

"She was not an informer and Gerry Adams has confirmed in court that he didn't believe that she was. She was a loving working class widowed mother doing her best to raise ten children.  They murdered her because they could".

A statement issued on behalf of Mr Bell's family said: “At the outset the family would like to acknowledge that today and the entire process has been a difficult and at times frustrating process for the family of Jean McConville, who have been seeking truth and justice for over 50 years".

ULSTER Mc (18).jpg
IRA murder victim Jean McConville's daughter Susie outside Belfast Crown Court. October 17, 2019.

However, the statement issued through his solicitors Pheonix Law, said that the 'not guilty directions', "vindicates Ivor Bell and comes as exoneration after a five-year legal battle.

2018-12-20_new_46666963_I2.png
Veteran republican Ivor Bell

"From the offset of this process,  Ivor  has vehemently denied the allegations levelled against him relating to the murder of Jean McConville. He put forward an alibi at the earliest opportunity."

"In the course of this trial process, the court heard evidence which corroborated Ivor’s alibi, that he was not in the jurisdiction at the time of the murder.

ULSTER Mc (15).jpg
IRA murder victim Jean McConville's children (from left to right) Thomas, Archie, Michael, Susie and Jim, speak to the media outside Belfast Crown Court. October 17, 2019.

"The court has rightly held that the Boston College Tapes are inherently unreliable. We now look forward to putting this case and its ill-founded allegations behind us.”

Solicitor Peter Corrigan, who read the statement further claimed that: “The Boston Tapes were of no benefit from a historical perspective never mind meeting the threshold of evidence in a criminal trial.

"The process from start to finish was fatally flawed, which lacked the relevant safeguards and as described by one expert during the course of the trial, “is exactly not  how to conduct an oral history project”.

Belfast Telegraph Digital

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph