Missing evidence in collusion cases worrying
Sinn Féin MP Mickey Brady has said the loss of evidence inthe Miami Showband Massacre case has raised more questions than answers.
Mr Brady said,
“This is the second case in a matter of weeks in which evidence has been lost. In both these cases it is highly likely that collusion between British state forces and Unionists paramilitaries played a major part in the killings.
“I wrote to the PSNI asking about the whereabouts of the instruments after being approached by surviving members of the band at a memorial service held on the 40th anniversary of the attack.
“Last month I received a reply from Assistant Chief Constable Will Kerr stating the instruments had been lost.
“I again wrote requesting more information and have a received a reply stating the items were sent to a police officer at Newry RUC Station who has since died.
“This has raised serious questions as was it normal practice for one person to be in charge of evidence or did nobody take over the role when he died or left the police?
"I am also deeply concerned that had members of the band not raised this issue with me we may never have known about the missing evidence.
“In an unsettling coincidence I received the letter from Mr Kerr explaining there was no hope of finding the instruments in the same week the Coroner expressed his incredulity at the loss of evidence in the Daniel McColgan case.
“It is of grave concern that two cases, separated by almost 30 years, could exhibit so many of the same worrying trends.
“The PSNI need to produce the paper trial on the missing evidence so we can be content that everything is being done to retrieve the missing material.”