By Barry McCaffrey
Irish News
05/03/09

THE father of murdered teenager David McIlwaine is expected to challenge Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde this morning to explain how a building company owned by murdered UVF leader Richard Jameson was awarded £15 million in security-force contracts.

Paul McIlwaine said that he intends to confront the chief constable at a public hearing of the Policing Board in Belfast.

On Tuesday Portadown loyalist Steven Brown, also known as Revels, was convicted of the February 2000 murder of David McIlwaine and Andrew Robb.

The teenagers were stabbed to death on a country road near Tandragee in Co Armagh.

Although the teenagers had no connection to the LVF, they were killed in retaliation for the murder of Portadown UVF leader Richard Jameson.

The McIlwaine family later raised concerns that some of those involved in their son’s murder were being protected from prosecution because they were police agents.

Yesterday The Irish News revealed that police were investigating Special Branch agent Mark Haddock’s possible link to the murders.

Despite Mr Jameson’s well known links to the UVF, police initially admitted in September 2007 that it had paid £320,000 to the UVF leader’s building firm and another

Co Armagh contractor for work carried out on various police stations over a six-year period.

However, in November last year the Chief Constable was forced to publicly apologise after admitting that police had actually paid almost £5 million
to the two firms.

Sir Hugh, pictured, pledged to investigate how Mr Jameson’s firm had won security force building contracts, despite failing police vetting procedures on two occasions.

It is understood the Chief Constable will this morning be challenged to confirm that the two Co Armagh building firms actually received more than £15 million in security force contracts, despite alleged links to the UVF.

“For many years there was a suspicion within the nationalist community that public contracts were being awarded to firms directly linked to loyalist paramilitaries,” Sinn Fein assembly member Martina Anderson said.

“These include security contracts awarded by the RUC and subsequently by the PSNI.

“Security clearance was also given for a number of senior loyalist paramilitaries to enter and leave barracks as they pleased.”

Calling for a full investigation into the full claims that police informers were involved in the McIlwaine/Robb murders, SDLP assembly member Dolores Kelly said: “This case must not be left here.

“There were more people involved than Brown (Revels), the informer Mark Burcombe and the other suspect, Noel Dillon, who has since taken his own life.

“The focus on the role of police informers must be followed up wherever it leads and reports of links to the activities of convicted UVF murderer Mark Haddock should be taken very seriously.”

Advertisements