Republican News · Thursday 30 March 2000

[An Phoblacht]

Lawyer puts pressure on Flanagan

American lawyer who repeatedly warned the RUC and British government that solicitor Rosemary Nelson's life was in danger, beginning two years before her death, has written to RUC Chief Constable Ronnie Flanagan, asking why no officers have yet been disciplined.

Ed Lynch, an attorney from New Jersey, has written to Flanagan reminding him that on the night of Rosemary Nelson's death, he had been promised that ``no stone had been left unturned'' in the investigation to apprehend the persons responsible.

``One year has passed since that promise. What stones have you turned? Have you interviewed each of your officers who threatened Rosemary prior to her killing?'' wrote Lynch.

``You certainly know their identities, since this information was supplied to you in sworn statements in 1997 and 1998.

``You are not restrained by any court proceedings from imposing discipline since the public prosecutor has chosen, for reasons best known to himself, not to prosecute these officers for dereliction of duty and abuse of authority.

``The frequently proffered excuse of `sub judice' no longer applies to this matter. I look forward to your prompt and candid response to the above,'' wrote Lynch.

Lynch has supplied the Independent Commission for Police Complaints a full list of all the letters he wrote and the meetings he attended when he passed his concerns about Nelson's safety to the RUC.

The four-page list reveals how many times senior British ministers and the RUC were warned about the threats to Nelson's life and outlines details of many meetings and dozens of letters sent to various RUC officers, British government ministers and officials, beginning in March 1993. The list includes dates of meetings when concerns were also passed to US members of Congress. It names the RUC officers and politicians to whom letters were sent and reveals their contents.

It concludes that ``an independent observer can have little confidence in the reliability of any investigation of allegations of misconduct against members of the RUC conducted by British police officers''.

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