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PSNI Raid Ballymurphy Home Of Murder Victim

2 March, 2006

Sinn Féin Assembly member for West Belfast Michael Ferguson has branded a PSNI raid on the Ballymurphy home of Gerard Devlin who was recently murdered, ‘as insensitive, outrageous and completely unwarranted‘.

Speaking from the scene Mr Ferguson said:

“This morning heavily armed PSNI members raided the Ballymurphy home of Gerard Devlin’s wife and his young family. The raid is ongoing. We are told that they intend to raid other homes in the Ballymurphy area connected to the Devlin family throughout the day. The bogus grounds being given for these raids is apparently to search for explosives. So far the PSNI have removed work mans tools from the house.

“The Devlin family and other local people have in recent weeks received a succession of death threats from local criminals. They have publicly identified in the media certain individuals who they believe are working for the PSNI and therefore being given immunity to carry on criminal activity in this community. They believe that today’s raids are PSNI pay back for the stance the family have taken in the wake of the murder of their loved one.

“Local people are outraged at the conduct of the PSNI in Ballymurphy this morning. This raid is insensitive, outrageous and completely unwarranted and tensions are running very high in the area. A police force set up to serve the community and protect victims of crime does not behave in this fashion. I am waiting for the SDLP and the rest of the new policing establishment who continue to lecture the nationalist and republican community on the virtues of this force to come to Ballymurphy today face this community and justify this operation against a grieving widow.” ENDS

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