Representing Victims of Terrorism in South Armagh
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The recent news that top Sinn Fein/IRA member Brian Arthurs has been arrested merely confirms the fears of victims. His rise within Republicanism bears testimony to the continuing militarism and criminality of that movement. Convicted and sentenced to 25 years in 1995 for possession of explosives, he was released under the Belfast Agreement, after only serving a few years of his sentence. From Tyrone and brother of one of eight IRA men shot during attack on Loughall police station, he represents the new generation of Republicans, the last to actively serve during the years of terrorism.

On his release Arthurs and his supporters had time to attack the victims who were conducting a dignified protest. He threatened a number of the victims which was reported to the police as a breach of his license however a blind eye was turned to this by the authorities. We demanded police action to re-arrest him before he left the Maze site but they refused, and he and others literally fled from the Maze. We warned then that his attitudes had not changed and unless the authorities acted we feared he would resume his previous career. Now we see that in November 2005 he was detained by police in connection with their investigations into the Northern Bank Robbery. Indeed at the same time another Tyrone man Martin McAliskey, of Ballybeg Road, Coalisland was charged with making false statements to police investigating the robbery. The charge related to the purchase, possession and sale of a white Ford Transit van believed to have been used in the raid.

It appears no coincidence that since victims have turned the spotlight on Republican criminality in South Armagh especially the smuggling of cigarettes and other black Market activities that they have been moved to Tyrone. We see it moved from one godfather to another. This now appears the centre of operations and recent police activity and success shows just how obvious and active Sinn Fein/IRA are in terms of criminality here.

What is also alarming is the coalition of criminality that has been created with so-called dissidents and career criminals coming together under the protection of PIRA Army Council members in Tyrone. They can clearly license criminality in their areas and continue to grow fat on the profits. Whether these profits are for their own personal gain, or to be used to support the military structures and needs of the PIRA or to be fed in to the political machinery they have developed has yet to be seen. One thing is sure it must be halted now. As victims we demand resolute action and we commend the police for their actions. It once more show the real duplicity of Sinn Fein/IRA as they attack the police for doing their job.

It is as we have warned they are only sitting on the Police Board to give them access to information, to allow them a platform to undermine the police and to give them a mandate to weaken the states response to terrorism. They will and are determined to undermine operations to blunt the police response and to expose it to such a level of public scrutiny and criticism so as to render it ineffective against the coalition of criminality that Sinn Fein/IRA continue to foster.

Just as the Mafia in the United States aimed to infiltrate and undermine the local Police Departments so too our RA-FIA aim for the same. Imagine if you will a situation developing such as we see in Iraq where the police are infiltrated by terrorists and are totally undependable, just as insurgents have done there Republicans do here. It will take months maybe years for the full extent of the DUPís folly to be exposed but it will pay dangerous dividends to Republicans when it does.

We call for a crack down on this Republican Coalition of Criminality, a restriction of Sinn Fein/IRA Police Board members from sensitive information and the revoking of the licenses of men like Brian Arthurs. The same zero toleration policy as was applied to the likes of Johnny Adair ought to be applied to Arthurs and his like. Sadly as we have seen criminal cases against Republicans collapse before we fear that there is political pressure put upon the DPP and that the Republican community are still not willing to co-operate with the police to supply the necessary information on criminals. Sinn Fein/IRA politicians have described Arthurs as a decent Republican well thatís appears to say it all doesnít it?


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