Corey imprisoned for his beliefs, say family
Corey imprisoned for his beliefs, say family

The family of jailed Lurgan republican Martin Corey have called for his immediate release.

They say he has been targeted for his political beliefs and branded his incarceration as “internment by other means”.

Mr Corey served 19 years in prison for the killing of two RUC men in 1973. He was released in 1992.

The British Secretary of State revoked his licence in April 2010 after he was deemed to be a “security risk”. The 61-year-old has been held in Maghaberry prison since then.

However, the family deny he poses any risk and claim they have never been given a reason for his imprisonment.

Lynda Magee, Mr Corey’s partner, said: “He does not know what he has done and has been told nothing about why he is being held.

“He has already served his time and he was willing to do it. But now he is being held for no reason.

“It has had a devastating effect on him and the whole family.”

His brother Sean Corey said they have been “kept in the dark” for more than a year.

“They have given us no evidence of any wrong-doing on Martin’s part,” he said.

“All they said was that he visited a couple of houses in Craigavon and Lurgan Tarry.

“They also made a number of other accusations, which are all nonsense.

“They disclosed no evidence whatsoever, and Martin has consistently denied their allegations.

“If he has been caught doing something, he should be charged and put on trial.

“As it stands, he is lingering in prison for nothing.”

Mr Corey continued: “I met with John O’Dowd a while ago to discuss the case.

“We would like to see Sinn Fein pushing it more. They are in government, so they must be able to do something.

“At the end of the day, this is an issue which could potentially affect some of their own members.”

Peter Corey, another brother, said: “He is being held because of his political beliefs, no other reason.

“He has always been a republican, and he has never renounced that, but he has done nothing wrong.”

Mr Corey’s younger brother Joe described the day of the arrest.

“They came to the door at around 6am,” he said. “There was about twelve of them standing there when I answered the door.

“They asked for Martin and told me the Secretary of State had revoked his licence. They gave no reason for this.

“There was no struggle. He just got up and walked out with them. The brought him to Maghaberry, where he has been ever since.”

Sean Corey added: “We thought those days were over, but seemingly not.

“Internment is here again, but by other means.

“They are trying to break him. They have no charges against him and he is wasting away in prison. That’s enough to break any man.”

Sinn Fein’s John O’Dowd has called for Mr Corey’s immediate release.

He said: “Sinn Fein are absolutely opposed to the revocation of licenses, which is tantamount to internment and goes against the rules of natural justice.

“The imprisonment of anyone without proper process is unacceptable and wrong.

“Like everyone else, Martin Corey is entitled to due process - if there is a charge and evidence against him he is entitled to have an opportunity to present a defence, if there is no charge he should be released.”

Mr O’Dowd added: “No charge has been brought against Martin - so he should be released immediately.

“Sinn Fein has raised and will continue to raise this case with the authorities seeking his immediate release.”

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