Irish Republican News · August 27, 2010
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Donaldson inquest delayed again

An inquest into the death of ‘super-spy’ Denis Donaldson has been adjourned for the fifth time at the request of the Gardai police in the 26 Counties.

The family of Mr Donaldson, who was murdered in 2006 just months after publicly admitting his role as an RUC Special Branch and MI5 informer, say Gardai are repeatedly “frustrating” their attempts to have an inquest.

On Thursday, Gardai said they were pursuing new “avenues” in the case.

They said the inquest needed to be put back because their murder investigation was making progress, a claim that the lawyer of Mr Donaldson’s family has rejected.

“I think there’s an obvious resistance to the inquest proceeding,” Ciaran Shields said.

“Nobody’s been arrested yet and I think that speaks for itself.

“On five occasions now an application has been made under the Coroner’s Act to adjourn the proceedings for very lengthy periods of time indeed.

“On occasion we have had requests for up to 12 months and no less than six months, so there’s a clear pattern and that would inform the family’s scepticism.”

Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams has hit out at Gardai over their “continued opposition,” which he described as “unacceptable and inexcusable”.

“There has been an unnecessary delay in setting a date for the inquest into the killing of Denis Donaldson. This has caused further and needless distress to the Donaldson family,” Mr Adams said.

“Given the circumstances surrounding the death of Denis Donaldson, his role as a British agent and allegations surrounding the part played by Special Branch and the British Security Service/MI5 in his death, it is essential that the inquest is fully compliant with international standards of human rights.

“The family is entitled to full disclosure from state agencies in both jurisdictions.”

Mr Donaldson had been Sinn Fein’s chief administrator at Stormont.

He threw his party into crisis when he confessed to being a paid spy for the RUC’s Special Branch and for MI5 for 20 years.

Four months later he was killed in an attack claimed by the breakaway ‘Real IRA’.

Speculation has continued that Donaldson may have been ordered killed to prevent him revealing any more secrets.

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