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Anger at PSNI stance on loyalist weapons

29 July, 2008 - by Alex Maskey

Responding to comments in today's Irish News by PSNI Assistant Chief Constable Peter Sheridan claiming that the PSNI know the location of loyalist weapons dumps, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Policing Alex Maskey said that if this is the case then it was time they went out and lifted them.

Mr Maskey said:

"There is a long history of policing in the north at best turning a blind eye to the activities of loyalist gangs and in many cases controlling and directing them. Given this reality it may not come as much of a surprise the admission by Peter Sheridan that the PSNI know the location of loyalist arms dumps.

"However what is unacceptable and quite shocking is his attitude to going and recovering these weapons. The existence of the IMC and IICD is no barrier to the PSNI recovering loyalist weaponry. Indeed it is the function of the PSNI to recover these guns. The purpose of these weapons is to attack Catholics and protect organised crime rackets. Indeed last year in Carrickfergus these very weapons were used to attack the PSNI.

"Many people from across society will be angered by the comments made by Mr Sheridan and the position adopted by the PSNI in recovering loyalist weapons. To most people it is very simple - if you know where these weapons are - then go and get them." ENDS

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