Another spy device found
Another spy device found

A British spying device has been discovered at the home of Derry republican Andrew McCartney.

Workmen building an extension to Mr McCartney’s home discovered the device when they removed floor boards yesterday morning.

Mr McCartney, a brother of Sinn Féin assembly member and former hunger striker Raymond McCartney, said that he regarded it as an intrusion of his family’s privacy.

The device, which included six battery packs and antenna, had been cleverly concealed in a loft above a bedroom ceiling. A small hole had been made in the upstairs floor to do so before replacing the wood and disguising the hole.

The Derry man said that the device, which was above his 19-year-old daughter’s bedroom, could have been in place for five or six years, and was now being stored for further examination.

“They [the security forces] were only in the house twice - once after the Castlereagh raid (on the east Belfast police complex in 2002), but my mother-in-law was in as soon as they broke down the door,” he said.

“The other time was to arrest me after the John Major visit [in 1995] but they were here no time.”

Raymond McCartney demanded an explanation of the find.

“This is just the latest evidence that the PSNI, Special Branch and British military intelligence have no intention of entering a new mode,” he said.

“Workmen discovered the electronic device planted in the kitchen ceiling cavity.

“Although it is impossible to determine how long this sophisticated device was in place, it has to be assumed that it was placed there with the authorisation of either British secretary of state Peter Hain or his predecessors.

“This is totally unacceptable and only serves to highlight the fact that, while the British government is demanding acts of confidence from others, it is intent of carrying on with its criminal activities against republicans.”

Mr McCartney described the apparent placing of the device in his brother’s home as an “unwarranted invasion of their family privacy and harassment”.

He added: “I would also strongly advise republican activists to have their homes searched for such devices.”

Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams said last night that he would be raising the discovery of an apparent bugging device in the home of a Derry republican “at the highest levels of the British government”.

“We view this as a very serious development,” he said. “It will come as no surprise to republicans that these types of devices are being found. I will be raising this at the highest levels of the British government.”

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