Terror pair slammed as European court prepares to rule on Omagh bomb appeal

Real IRA leader Michael McKevitt
Real IRA leader Michael McKevitt

Two terrorists ordered to pay compensation over the Omagh bombing have “abused human rights laws” in a bid to have the ruling overturned, a victims campaigner has said.

The European Court of Human Rights is today expected to come to a decision on an appeal by Michael McKevitt and Liam Campbell, who were found liable for the atrocity and ordered to pay damages to the victims’ families.

Real IRA member Liam Campbell

Real IRA member Liam Campbell

However, the two men – both convicted RIRA members – have taken their appeal against the ruling to the court in Strasbourg, causing outrage among the families of the Omagh victims.

Ken Funston, advocacy manager for victims group South East Fermanagh Foundation (SEFF), said: “For these two men to go to the European Court of Human Rights and claim they have been wronged is, quite frankly, sickening.

“It is an abuse of human rights legislation, and many people feel these laws favour the perpetrators of crime rather than the victims.

“By dragging this appeal through the courts, these men are making the families of the Omagh victims relive the painful emotions of that dreadful day all over again; they are being re-traumatised.”

The aftermath of the Omagh bomb

The aftermath of the Omagh bomb

Mr Funston, whose brother was shot the back by the IRA in 1984, added: “If my family wanted to get any redress for my brother’s murder through the courts, we would have to pay all the costs ourselves, yet these two men get full legal aid. It is just not right.”