Sean '˜Spike' Murray will not face Florida guns charges: PPS

A leading Sinn Fein strategist will not face charges over allegations he smuggled guns Northern Ireland from Florida after the IRA ceasefire, prosecutors have said.

Sean ‘Spike’ Murray from Belfast was named in a 2014 BBC Spotlight documentary as having conspired with Florida businessman Mike Logan to secure a large number of Glock handguns from the US for the Provos.

Mr Logan gave a candid interview to Spotlight but he was granted immunity for prosecution in return for his cooperation with investigating authorities.

He died suddenly in Florida in October 2016.

At the time of the television broadcast Mr Murray denied any wrong-doing and said the allegations made against him were “without foundation”.

However, in June this year a file was forwarded to the Public Prosecution Service.

In recent weeks the PPS confirmed it had “received a file from police in relation to an allegation of possession of firearms with intent against a 65-year-old man” that was “under active consideration”.

On Monday (November 5) a PPS spokeswoman said: “I can confirm that a decision has been taken not to prosecute a man for any offences in relation to the alleged importation of firearms.

“Careful consideration has been given to all of the available evidence and it has been concluded that this is insufficient to meet the Test for Prosecution.”

A senior PSNI officer will share a platform with Mr Murray at a ‘Stuck In The Past’ panel discussion in north Belfast on November 6 to discuss how paramilitary activity can be brought to an end.

Speaking ahead of the PPS decision a spokesman for the PSNI – who will be represented by Detective Superintendent Bobby Singleton at Tuesday’s event – said: “The PSNI have and will continue to engage with a broad range of individuals who want to make a contribution towards tackling paramilitarism and delivering safer communities.”