Belfast Telegraph

Sinn Fein told to give £1.5m donation back to dead man's estate

William E Hampton
William E Hampton
Ralph Hewitt

By Ralph Hewitt

A Fine Gael Senator has said Sinn Fein should return the £1.5m donation to the estate of William E Hampton but admitted that "history wouldn't suggest" the party would do so.

Dublin North representative James Reilly added that if any of the money was spent in the Republic, it would break Irish political spending laws.

He called on Sinn Fein leader Mary Lou McDonald to declare that none of the £1.5m would be spent in the Republic.

"I have asked her to make a clear declaration that the money will not be spent in the Republic in breach of Irish law and, secondly, the honourable thing to do, given that it was the intention that the money would be spent down here, is to return it his estate," he said.

The Belfast Telegraph contacted Sinn Fein for a response to Mr Reilly's comments but did not receive a statement.

The only surviving signatory of Mr Hampton's will, legal secretary Carmel Brady, who is now a Fine Gael councillor, said Mr Hampton's name "didn't register" with her until she Googled him. Ms Brady was one of two witnesses to the will when it was drawn up on June 27, 1997.

Meanwhile, the National Crime Agency has confirmed it received a complaint over the donation from TUV leader Jim Allister.

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