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Retired police must be held fully to account says Sinn Féin

16 May, 2006

Sinn Féin MLA Gerry Kelly, spokesperson on policing and justice has said that the British government must change the law to empower the Police Ombudsman to hold retired members of the RUC or PSNI fully to account for wrongdoing.

Speaking as a party delegation met with Paul Goggins, the new NIO Minister for Policing and Security, Mr Kelly said that the British government carries responsibility for former RUC or PSNI members getting off the hook at this time.

Mr Kelly said:

"In the last few days, I have met with David Hanson, NIO minister for justice and Nuala O Loan, the Police Ombudsman. I have discussed my concerns with them both. Today I will be raising the same grave concern with Paul Goggins and pressing him to close the loophole in the legislation to ensure anyone engaged in policing can be held fully to account.

"The case for the Police Ombudsman to be given this power is compelling. It is made by those who have declared their intention to try and thwart investigations by the Police Ombudsman and by those who resign, retire or take sick leave whenever such investigations close in on them, sometimes removing or destroying evidence of their wrongdoing in the process. Political detectives have no future in policing and Sinn Fein is determined to see those responsible for wrongdoing held fully to account for their actions." ENDS

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