The recent admissions by Dublin lawyer Kieran Conway on the BBC’s Hard Talk programme will have come as a shock to those who weren’t aware of previous comments by the former IRA member made in a book in 2014.
He admitted to participating in a number of armed robberies in England, half a dozen commercial bombings, and 100 shootings.
On five or six occasions British soldiers were killed.
He also claimed to have key information in relation to the 1974 Birmingham pub bombings.
Quite simply, if the judicial system in Northern Ireland does not attempt to question this man, then the very concept of legacy inquests and investigating the past is brought into disrepute.
How can anyone pursue former members of the British Army and RUC in relation to the events of 40 odd years ago if they are not prepared to question former terrorists based on admissions freely made?
As a member of the Policing Board I have written to the Chief Constable to ask if attempts have been made to question this individual, and if necessary to seek his extradition.
It is surely a supreme irony that Kieran Conway’s law firm styles itself as being a “criminal law and human rights” practice.
Quite how someone can claim to be a human rights advocate and then admit to involvement in terrorist acts and to withholding of information is beyond me.
It is high time Mr Conway was made accountable for his actions.
Ross M Hussey, MLA, West Tyrone