Belfast Telegraph

Trident whistleblower William McNeilly discharged from Navy

Submarine fears: William McNeilly
Submarine fears: William McNeilly

By Paul Ward

A Royal Navy submariner from Northern Ireland who published an online dossier of safety and security concerns about the Trident nuclear programme has been discharged from the service.

Able Seaman William McNeilly (25) went absent without leave last month after producing an 18-page report containing allegations about the Trident submarines based at Faslane on the Clyde.

He handed himself into Royal Navy police after his claims made headlines and he was held at a military base in Scotland.

His report alleged 30 safety and security flaws on the Trident submarines, describing them as a "disaster waiting to happen''.

The Royal Navy said it disagreed with Mr McNeilly's "subjective and unsubstantiated'' views and said it takes the operation of its submarines and the safety of its personnel extremely seriously.

The 25-year-old from Newtownabbey has put up a new seven-page online post thanking people for their support.

He said he has been given a "dishonourable discharge" and that he refused to sign a document discrediting his allegations which would have led to an earlier release from the service.

Mr McNeilly wrote: "Most people know that I acted in the interest of national security. However, I was still given a dishonourable discharge from the Royal Navy."

Mr McNeilly believes more staff concerns will come to light.

"It's only a matter of time before worse information comes out," he wrote.

A Royal Navy spokeswoman said: "We can confirm that AB McNeilly has left the Naval Service, the details of which are a matter for the individual and his employer."

Further reading

Response in Clyde sub row insulting, says SNP's Alex Salmond

Trident whistleblower is held by Navy police

Eight things we would not have known without whistleblowers

Trident whistle-blower William McNeilly deserves more than the 'hero or coward' treatment 

MoD asked to explain Ardglass trawler submarine incident

Ardglass trawler dragged backwards 'by submarine' 

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