A victims’ campaigner has said he is shocked that a top Dublin lawyer has not been investigated over his self-confessed involvement in gun and bomb attacks during the height of the Troubles.
During a detailed interview with BBC’s HARDtalk current affairs programme last week, criminal defence lawyer Kieran Conway admitted to taking part in fatal gun attacks which left “maybe five or six” British soldiers dead.
Mr Conway, who was the IRA’s director of intelligence at the time bombs claimed 21 lives in Birmingham in 1974, said during the interview: “British soldiers did die when I was present and firing at them but I can’t be sure it was my bullet which caught them.”
He also admitted planting bombs at several commercial premises.
In the wake of Mr Conway’s explosive remarks, Kenny Donaldson, spokesman for Innocent Victims United, said: “There is sheer bemusement at the failure by the authorities to bring in self-confessed terrorist Kieran Conway to cross-examine him in respect of the public confessions he has made.
“Has the UK Government signed off on an amnesty which goes even beyond what we know concerning OTR assurance letters and Royal prerogatives of mercy?
“The only republicans being lifted for pre-1998 crimes are those who do not subscribe to SF/PIRA’s ideology. Coincidence? Now it’s getting way beyond that when we see how the authorities are refusing to deal with Mr Conway.”
TUV leader Jim Allister has written to the PSNI chief constable and the secretary of state, claiming it is their “bounden duty” to investigate which of Mr Conway’s crimes were committed within their respective jurisdictions.
Alliance justice spokesman Trevor Lunn has called for “urgent investigations” by the PSNI and Garda.
He added: “The PSNI should immediately seek a European arrest warrant to have Conway extradited to Northern Ireland for questioning.”
PSNI Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy told the News Letter: “We are aware of the BBC interview and will assess its content to establish whether it contains credible evidence of the commission of criminal offences.
“It is too early to say at this stage what evidence might exist in any cases referenced in the interview, or whether there are credible opportunities to progress investigations.”
The An Garda Síochána said it was not its policy to comment on named individuals or third party statements.