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Full Hearings

Hearing: 9th October 2008, day 62

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held at:
The Interpoint Centre
20-24 York Street
Belfast BT15 1AQ

on Thursday, 9 October 2008
commencing at 10.15 am

Day 62









1 Thursday, 9 October 2008

2 (10.15 am)

3 (Proceedings delayed)

4 (10.28 am)

5 Housekeeping

6 MR PHILLIPS: In the absence of the witness, I'm going to

7 suggest that I fill the time with a housekeeping

8 announcement --

9 THE CHAIRMAN: Shall we do that before or after I go through

10 the ...

11 MR PHILLIPS: It is entirely a matter for you, sir.

12 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone who should be here likely to turn

13 up while you are doing your housekeeping announcement?

14 MR PHILLIPS: Perhaps it is better to make the announcement

15 first.

16 THE CHAIRMAN: Right, make the announcement first.

17 MR PHILLIPS: Thank you. All I was going to say, and it is

18 really not that important, is that we have amended our

19 timetable for next week -- and I hope everyone has now

20 seen it -- so that the first witness, who is P157, will

21 begin on Tuesday morning and is scheduled to last that

22 day.

23 The next witness, Ian Chapman, is due to start at

24 lunchtime on the next day, Wednesday, and then we have

25 further evidence on the Thursday. So there will be no





1 evidence on Monday afternoon of next week.

2 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

3 Mr Currans, may we go through the checklist before

4 the witness comes in?

5 Is the public area screen fully in place, locked and

6 the key secured?

7 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

8 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the fire doors on either side of the

9 screen closed?

10 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the technical support screens in place

12 and securely fastened?

13 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

14 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than Inquiry personnel and

15 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

16 of this chamber?

17 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

18 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr (name redacted), can you confirm, please, that

19 the two witness cameras have been switched off and

20 shrouded?

21 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

22 THE CHAIRMAN: Have all the other cameras been switched off?

23 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

24 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

25 Bring the witness in, please.





1 The cameras on the Panel, Inquiry personnel and the

2 Full Participants' legal representatives may now be

3 switched back on.

4 P136 (sworn)

5 Questions by MR PHILLIPS

6 THE CHAIRMAN: Please sit down. Yes, Mr Phillips?

7 MR PHILLIPS: Can we look, please, at your witness statement

8 to the Inquiry, which, on the screen, will be at

9 RNI-841-381 (displayed). And can we see your ciphered

10 signature at RNI-841-407 (displayed) and the date of

11 19 October last year?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. Now, you have been granted anonymity. You are giving

14 evidence under a cipher, P136, and I hope you have been

15 provided with a list of other ciphers. Please, if in

16 doubt, check a name against the list and if you are in

17 any doubt at all, raise the issue and I'll try to help

18 you.

19 Could we start at the beginning, please? You tell

20 us in the first paragraph of your statement about your

21 career history and that you joined the

22 Command Secretariat in May of 1997?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. What I would like to do straight away is to look at the

25 little chart that Superintendent Maxwell prepared, and





1 that's at RNI-834-001 (displayed). Thank you.

2 Now, as I understand it, when you joined

3 in May 1997, you were at the chief inspector level?

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. You were subsequently promoted in April 1998, as you

6 tell us, to superintendent, which is the position

7 formerly occupied by Superintendent Maxwell?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. And I think at all times the Chief Superintendent was

10 P157?

11 A. That's correct.

12 Q. Now, you say in your statement at paragraph 9 at

13 RNI-841-383 (displayed) that Command Secretariat was

14 essentially a huge post box?

15 A. That's correct. A huge amount of post came in, was

16 processed and was sent out by way of a reply to whoever

17 required a reply.

18 Q. Thank you. And you deal in your statement with the

19 other staff who were working there. You say there was

20 a small team of lower ranking officers -- this is in

21 paragraph 8 on the same page -- and other staff, both

22 uniformed, if I can put it that way, and civilian?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. Can I just ask you some questions about the way

25 correspondence was drafted? We heard from





1 Superintendent Maxwell that it was, as it were, the form

2 that letters should bear the superintendent rank. Is

3 that correct?

4 A. That's correct, generally, although on occasions

5 correspondence did come in addressed to the Chief

6 Superintendent.

7 Q. And he, in those circumstances, would reply?

8 A. He would reply.

9 Q. Given his rank?

10 A. That's correct.

11 Q. Yes. Thank you. So there may be occasions then where

12 you were in fact the officer putting together, drafting

13 a letter, but it might go out with the Superintendent's

14 rank and possibly his name at the bottom of it?

15 A. I mean, I may have drafted a letter that he would have

16 signed, but generally if I drafted a letter, I signed it

17 myself for the Superintendent, that's correct.

18 Q. Now, in cases like that, would your more senior officers

19 within Command Secretariat have an input or at least see

20 drafts before they went out?

21 A. There certainly were occasions -- and it really depended

22 on the type and nature of the correspondence, but there

23 were occasions when correspondence would have been

24 referred certainly to the Chief Superintendent and,

25 indeed, to the Chief Constable, depending on what it





1 was.

2 Q. On that latter point, can I ask you this: you tell us

3 slightly later in your statement about the way in which

4 correspondence was brought to the attention of the

5 Chief Constable by the Chief Superintendent?

6 A. That's correct.

7 Q. Can I show you paragraph 12, and that's on the next

8 page, RNI-841-384 (displayed)? Do you see at the bottom

9 of the page there?

10 Again, can I take it that this would not be

11 a general feature; it would only apply, presumably, to

12 important or significant correspondence?

13 A. Yes, it was really a judgment made by the Chief

14 Inspector or the Superintendent as to what we felt

15 needed to be drawn to the attention of the

16 Chief Constable. If it was something, certainly, if

17 I believed that he already had some knowledge of or was

18 dealing with, certainly I would have wanted to make him

19 aware of what was going on, so that he was fully

20 informed when he was subsequently dealing with any

21 issues.

22 Q. In terms of who would discuss correspondence with him,

23 I get the impression from your statement that certainly

24 when you first joined in 1997, your direct contact with

25 the Chief Constable on matters of this kind was pretty





1 limited?

2 A. It would have been very limited.

3 Q. Yes. So it would be left, would it, to the more senior

4 officers to discuss issues, raise issues with him and to

5 take his view about them?

6 A. It would have been done primarily by the Chief

7 Superintendent. If the Chief Superintendent was on

8 leave, the Superintendent then stepped up and performed

9 that role.

10 Q. But in general terms then, it was the Chief

11 Superintendent who acted as the gateway or the filter?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. Thank you very much. Now, we have heard also from

14 witnesses that the Chief Constable was hands-on?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And you tell us in your statement how he came to be

17 personally involved and concerned with the issue of

18 threats to Rosemary Nelson at various points?

19 A. Yes -- certainly he had been made aware of some of the

20 correspondence coming in, or most of the correspondence

21 that I had knowledge of. He would not have been briefed

22 on straightforward holding responses, which were

23 awaiting further information.

24 Q. But when it came to matters which were significant or

25 where he had had an earlier input, you would expect him





1 to take an active role and an active interest, would

2 you?

3 A. Certainly he would have been informed of the

4 correspondence in those circumstances.

5 Q. When it came to your time to act as superintendent, in

6 other words, when you had moved up a rung in the

7 structure and you presumably then were more often

8 dealing with him and taking and briefing correspondence

9 to him, did you find him to be somebody who would often

10 get involved in the precise drafting of correspondence

11 and give an input?

12 A. Even as a superintendent, I wouldn't have had

13 a significant amounted of daily contact, but certainly I

14 had some and it really depended on what he was being

15 shown.

16 On occasion -- certainly he would have read the

17 correspondence. On occasions he would have made one or

18 two changes, maybe in handwriting, on the draft. On

19 occasions it would have been fine; he would have let it

20 go. He may also, if it was something big or something

21 more significant, he may have taken it and thought about

22 it for a day or so and actually made more substantial

23 changes, or redrafted it.

24 Q. Thank you. Can I ask you about a completely different

25 topic now: not correspondence, but meetings?





1 If the Chief Constable was to have a meeting,

2 whether internal or external, how was he briefed? What

3 was the system for that?

4 A. Again, it clearly -- it would depend what the meeting

5 was. Some meetings he would have dealt with almost

6 himself, I think, because he would have been aware

7 probably of the background and depending what the

8 request was.

9 If it was a meeting about a crime issue, I would

10 have expected him to be briefed by the ACC Crime. The

11 chief, on occasions -- in fact quite often, I think --

12 did meetings on his own and he may not have had

13 a particular briefing for them.

14 Q. Can I just take a couple of examples, and it may be that

15 you had no direct involvement in them. You certainly

16 don't deal with them in your statement. But a meeting

17 with an organisation, for example, such as the Lawyers

18 Alliance for Justice in Ireland, who obviously feature

19 in this history -- so it is an external body, with

20 a range of concerns, which they were corresponding about

21 regularly -- how would he be prepared for a meeting such

22 as that?

23 A. It would be likely that the -- any correspondence or

24 anything that that group had sent in would have been

25 sent out to the various department or area. If there





1 were questions posed, that information would have been

2 sought and brought back in. Certainly if the Chief was

3 going to a meeting, then, subsequently with that group,

4 I would have expected him to see that correspondence.

5 Q. Would he ask for an update in advance of the meeting,

6 for example?

7 A. He may have done, and that would have been done on that

8 paper, but again, that is an area that the Chief

9 Superintendent and he would have worked on much more

10 closely than myself, unless the Chief Super was off.

11 But certainly the paperwork would have been available if

12 the group would have written in advance and posed

13 questions or posed issues they wanted to discuss.

14 Q. In relation to that written material prepared for

15 a meeting such as that, where would it then go after the

16 meeting had been concluded?

17 A. Sorry, is this the meeting, sorry, with the group?

18 Q. Let's say the Lawyers Alliance, yes, the example we are

19 using there. What happened to briefing material

20 prepared for that sort of meeting?

21 A. It wouldn't necessarily have been formal briefing

22 material; it would have been a response in relation to

23 correspondence and that then would have been part of

24 the file.

25 Q. So the relevant earlier correspondence would be put in





1 front of him so he could remind himself of what had been

2 going on?

3 A. If he didn't already know the detail.

4 Q. Indeed. What about perhaps more significant meetings,

5 such as the one which took place, we know -- and I'm not

6 suggesting you were present -- with the Special

7 Rapporteur? Would the same sort of process be followed

8 in that case?

9 A. I don't know, but I think that was a meeting he had the

10 ACC Crime with him at, and I would have expected the

11 ACC Crime to know of the details. So I'm not -- I

12 couldn't say that there was any formal briefing or

13 correspondence sought in advance.

14 Q. Thank you. Now, going back to correspondence briefly,

15 Superintendent Maxwell told us that you, as far as he

16 could recall, came to become the in-house specialist, if

17 I can put it that way, in the Rosemary Nelson issues

18 over the years. Is that a fair way of putting it?

19 A. I certainly didn't deal with all the Rosemary Nelson

20 correspondence, but I think because I had received or

21 been there whenever some correspondence come in, for

22 consistency's sake I ended up probably dealing with the

23 larger percentage of the correspondence.

24 Q. Was that a typical way in which the office operated,

25 namely that if one of you had taken on an issue and





1 corresponded on it, if there was subsequent

2 correspondence, that person would tend to pick it up

3 again?

4 A. I think that was generally it. I mean, if somebody had

5 knowledge of it, they generally kept with it unless it

6 was something that required a higher input or, indeed,

7 that person was off.

8 Q. But presumably from time to time, even though, as it

9 were, that case and no doubt other cases became your

10 particular topic, you would discuss issues with the

11 others, including your superiors and take their advice

12 about how to address matters?

13 A. Certainly. And in this case, yes, I did seek advice and

14 the views of certainly the Chief Superintendent.

15 Q. Yes. So far as Rosemary Nelson is concerned, you see on

16 the screen your paragraph 11, and you say there, which

17 is obvious from the files, that over the time with which

18 we are concerned, so 1997 to the time of

19 Rosemary Nelson's murder in March 1999, there was a

20 considerable amount of correspondence?

21 A. That's correct.

22 Q. And although you didn't deal with all of it, you

23 obviously dealt with a good part of it during those

24 years?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. Now, you say in your statement that you think you first

2 came across Rosemary Nelson's name in connection with

3 the 1997 Drumcree incident, where she alleged that she

4 was assaulted. That's paragraph 13 at RNI-841-385

5 (displayed). Do you see that paragraph?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. In fact, I think you have now seen other correspondence

8 before that date, which I'm about to ask you about.

9 But can I just ask you to stand back before we get

10 into the detail and tell me why it was, you think,

11 looking back on it, that there was such a considerable

12 volume of correspondence in relation to this particular

13 solicitor?

14 A. Certainly I think -- I just can't remember the dates

15 exactly -- there had been allegations made that

16 Mrs Nelson had been threatened by RUC officers. Those

17 allegations had certainly been picked up or were drawn

18 to the attention of various groups both in

19 Northern Ireland and further afield. So they were

20 writing in and, I suppose, with the more historic murder

21 of Pat Finucane, there was a concern for her safety,

22 from that point of view.

23 Q. And Command Secretariat, in a sense, looking at the

24 files, seems to have been the place where a good deal of

25 this correspondence from all sorts of different sources,





1 raising all sorts of different questions -- it all seems

2 at one time or another to have passed through

3 Command Secretariat. So you saw correspondence about

4 complaints, didn't you?

5 A. Complaints, yes, from Mrs Nelson or on her behalf, yes.

6 Q. And the correspondence in relation to the question of

7 threats being made to her?

8 A. That's correct, yes.

9 Q. And all of the business of the Special Rapporteur and

10 his report came into the office, even though you may not

11 have dealt with it?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. And of course the questions of threat assessment, which

14 we are going to look at together, and all the trouble

15 which led to the appointment of Commander Mulvihill

16 later in 1998.

17 So in a sense, although in each of those cases you

18 were seeking answers from other parts of the RUC, their

19 answers, all of that product, was filtered through you

20 out into the world, as it were, whether to the NIO or to

21 correspondents within Northern Ireland or elsewhere?

22 A. There was certainly a significant amount of

23 correspondence in Command Secretariat in relation to all

24 the issues you have raised.

25 However, I couldn't be sure -- and I would have





1 expected that there was information in other places.

2 For example, as complaints were being investigated,

3 there would be new material coming into the complaints,

4 the investigator, which we certainly in

5 Command Secretariat would not have been aware of the

6 detail. There would have been perhaps whatever checks

7 Special Branch had done, and certainly that information

8 wouldn't have been in Command Secretariat.

9 So whilst we had a significant amount of material,

10 I certainly wouldn't have thought that we would have had

11 it all.

12 Q. No. You may not have had the detail, whether in

13 complaints or any other aspect, but you had the breadth,

14 didn't you?

15 A. We certainly had a range of issues.

16 Q. The full range. Yes, thank you.

17 Can we just look at the first incident together,

18 please, and this is the May 1997 issue, where, as far as

19 we can see for the first time, the question of

20 Rosemary Nelson's security was raised.

21 Now, I know that you have seen all the relevant

22 documents I'm going to show you, but just to put it in

23 context, can we look at the order together before I ask

24 you the questions? The first is RNI-101-020

25 (displayed). This is the letter from the United States





1 senator, Robert Torricelli, at 15 April and you see

2 there the reference to threats against her life and the

3 suggestion at the end of the third paragraph that the

4 threats have recently become more insistent and ominous.

5 Do you see that?

6 A. Yes, I do.

7 Q. Secondly, can I show you RNI-101-018 (displayed),

8 30 April? This is the letter from the NIO, enclosing

9 a copy of that letter. Do you see, in the first

10 paragraph?

11 A. That's correct.

12 Q. 30 April, addressed not to you but to the Chief

13 Superintendent.

14 Then next in time is RNI-101-026 (displayed), which

15 is a memo to another officer within Command Secretariat,

16 a redacted name there at the top, from somebody within

17 Police Division about the same letter, and asking

18 a specific question -- do you see in the second

19 paragraph? -- about what has been done about personal

20 protection. Do you see that?

21 A. Yes, I do.

22 Q. The next stage is where the Command Secretariat, the

23 Chief Superintendent, receives the memo in response from

24 Complaints and Discipline -- that's RNI-101-030

25 (displayed), dated 29 May -- referring to that senator's





1 letter, but also the memo we have just seen at (c) and

2 the Lawyers Alliance letter at (a), and reporting in

3 relation to the complaints which had already started,

4 the Lawyers Alliance complaint. Then finally to show

5 you RNI-101-031 (displayed), which is his memo, the same

6 officer in Complaints and Discipline, over to Lurgan, to

7 the Subdivisional Commander, directing their attention

8 in Lurgan to what was going on and offering to -- do you

9 see the end of the second paragraph? -- provide any

10 information to enable Special Branch or others to assess

11 the threat.

12 Now, can I take you finally to RNI-101-036

13 (displayed), 6 June? This is what goes back to the

14 civil servant at the NIO. It has -- I was going to say

15 your signature. It is actually your cipher at the

16 bottom, over the Superintendent, his name. And that is

17 the response to the NIO letter we saw.

18 Now, that's the documentation. I have just reminded

19 you of it because, of course, while everybody here is

20 very familiar with these documents, you, I don't think,

21 dealt with them in your statement. They weren't, I

22 think, put to you in interview. So I want to just set

23 all the ground out for you there.

24 Can I ask you first of all a general question about

25 your dealings with the NIO Police Division? With whom





1 would you be in contact in Command Secretariat within

2 the Police Division?

3 A. It would have been probably a number of staff, both

4 within the Police Division and within the Security

5 Policy Branch that we would have liaised with, and in my

6 role I also was the formal liaison superintendent. So

7 I did have an office in the NIO --

8 Q. This is from April 1998 then, presumably?

9 A. Yes, as the Superintendent. However, because it was

10 a dual role, I didn't spend that much time in the

11 office. I was there on big occasion, for parades and so

12 forth, for consultation and liaison, but in terms of --

13 and I'll just look at some of the names -- and, in fact,

14 one -- I don't see -- there was certainly one individual

15 who appears in the correspondence who hasn't got

16 a cipher -- Simon Rogers -- whom I would have dealt

17 with.

18 Q. Yes.

19 A. There were other lower ranked staff whom -- I'm not sure

20 whether they will be giving evidence or not -- who we

21 would have worked with in the SPOB branch on

22 a day-to-day basis. Anne Colville -- certainly I had

23 liaison with Anne Colville.

24 Q. That would be pretty regular, would it?

25 A. The contact was more by paper, but certainly there were





1 occasions when we spoke by phone.

2 Q. Yes, okay. Just sticking with this letter here, can

3 I take it from your ciphered signature at the bottom of

4 the page that you took on the response to the NIO letter

5 and you produced the draft that went out on 6 June?

6 A. Certainly, if it's signed by me at the bottom, I will

7 have sent it out.

8 Q. Yes. Thank you. We saw in going through the documents

9 what appears to have happened. When the 30 April letter

10 came in from the NIO with the Senator's letter, it

11 appears that it was sent from Command Secretariat to

12 Complaints and Discipline?

13 A. That's correct.

14 Q. Now, were you involved in that?

15 A. I think from looking at the documents yesterday it

16 wasn't actually myself. I think it may have been

17 Superintendent Maxwell who sent it.

18 Q. Thank you. Obviously, Complaints and Discipline would

19 be able to deal with an update on what was going on with

20 the complaints, but plainly they weren't the people who

21 would assess a threat to an individual, were they?

22 A. They weren't. However, Complaints and Discipline I

23 would have expected, because they were investigating

24 complaints, may have information which would have

25 assisted in terms of any assessment or any further





1 action that was needed. For example,

2 Command Secretariat would not have known where exactly

3 those investigations were and what evidence, if any,

4 they had uncovered in relation to threats, and that may

5 have been important for any threat assessment.

6 Q. Indeed. But we know that the Senator's letter referred

7 to threats?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. And we know that on the two subsequent occasions in 1998

10 that Command Secretariat sent letters raising concerns

11 about safety and security to Special Branch for their

12 assessment because they were the people who were

13 experienced and expert in threat assessments, weren't

14 they?

15 A. Certainly, and our force order did require the issue of

16 the correspondence going to Complaints and Discipline --

17 I can't comment on the Superintendent's thinking at that

18 time. However, as I have said, if there was perhaps

19 something material that Complaints branch may have had,

20 then it may have assisted the process.

21 I think the other issue is whether or not -- and

22 complaints were raised about members of the RUC and it

23 is whether or not you wanted to send those papers to

24 perhaps the local area where those complaints were being

25 made about officers. But, again, I can't answer for the





1 Superintendent. I'm just trying to be helpful in terms

2 of --

3 Q. Yes. Ideally there would have been a question out from

4 Command Secretariat on the state of the complaints and

5 also a question out, either down to the region or to

6 Special Branch, to get to the bottom of the actual

7 threat position. Is that fair?

8 A. If -- it depends what knowledge, I suppose, we thought

9 that Complaints and Discipline may have as to whether or

10 not the correspondence should first go to them. And

11 I assume -- and perhaps we will get it back to the

12 screen -- obviously, the Superintendent, Complaints and

13 Discipline, did then send it on to the local district.

14 Q. Exactly. Can we look at that together, RNI-101-030

15 (displayed) because what he says right at the outset is

16 that he has forwarded it on, the material, to the

17 Subdivisional Commander in Lurgan. So he had taken that

18 initiative himself?

19 A. That's correct. And I think from -- because he would

20 have been in a position to know what impact, if any, it

21 would have had on complaints and what the complaints

22 aspect was, then he probably could do that.

23 Q. Now, if we look at his memo to the Subdivisional

24 Commander, which is at RNI-101-031 (displayed), what he

25 says in the first paragraph is that he is:





1 "... forwarding the copy letters to enable you [the

2 Subdivisional Commander] to consider what action, if

3 any, is required regarding the security or safety of

4 Mrs Nelson."

5 That was the issue specifically raised by the NIO,

6 wasn't it, in their memo?

7 A. That's correct.

8 Q. Just flicking back to RNI-101-030 (displayed), the

9 letter there at paragraph 1(a), the Torricelli letter,

10 the Lawyers Alliance letter, that was the letter which

11 initiated the Lawyers Alliance complaints and which also

12 dealt in very similar terms to the Senator's letter with

13 the question of threats, wasn't it? Shall I show you

14 that?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. RNI-101-032, please (displayed). Do you see in the

17 second paragraph?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. It is very similar language and including the sentence

20 at the end of the fifth paragraph:

21 "The threats have become more insistent and ominous

22 of late."


24 A. That's correct.

25 Q. So far as your response is concerned, if we can go back





1 to RNI 1301-036 (displayed), it looks from the file --

2 but please can you say whether you think this is

3 correct -- that at this point there had been no response

4 in fact from the local police officers, in other words,

5 from the Lurgan subdivision, in answer to that question

6 of what advice should be given. That seems to be right,

7 doesn't it?

8 A. Certainly I don't recall having a response from the

9 local subdivision.

10 Q. No, and there is nothing in the letter, is there, which

11 addresses the question of whether the issue of her

12 personal safety, in terms of what advice or counselling,

13 as it were, on personal protection should be given to

14 her? There is nothing in the letter dealing with that

15 topic?

16 A. Not in my letter back to the NIO, but clearly it was an

17 issue raised by the Superintendent, Complaints and

18 Discipline, for the local district to do what they are

19 required to do in terms of her safety.

20 Q. But there is nothing to indicate from the letter, is

21 there, that you knew what they had decided to do at the

22 time you sent this letter?

23 A. Not in relation to the response to the NIO. That would

24 have been a matter that they would have dealt with

25 locally, and it may have been a longer term requirement.





1 Q. But given that the NIO had specifically raised the issue

2 in May, was it something that you would have expected to

3 hear back from the local subdivision about?

4 A. I'm not sure that we would have got that sort of detail

5 back. Generally when it went out for them to deal with

6 and take whatever action was required, they would have

7 dealt with it.

8 On occasions, districts or subdivisions, sorry,

9 would have come back to us with an update, but certainly

10 my memory is that invariably when it was left to them to

11 deal with, they dealt with it.

12 Q. Now, so far as Superintendent Maxwell was concerned, he

13 accepted, having gone through the material, that with

14 hindsight -- and it was with hindsight, of course -- the

15 response here on the 6th was a little premature because

16 of course you didn't have that information at this stage

17 from the local subdivisional commander. Would you agree

18 with him about that?

19 A. I think part of the difficulty -- a lot of the local

20 security issues would take time and I was trying to get

21 a response back to the NIO as soon as we have something

22 to provide to them, otherwise if they are waiting to

23 write to other groups -- and certainly they would have

24 expected generally a reply within two weeks. Sometimes

25 it didn't happen. Sometimes it took longer depending on





1 what enquiries were required.

2 Q. In looks about five weeks, doesn't it?

3 A. Yes. And, again, it very much depended on what time it

4 took to get back to Complaints and Discipline and what

5 action they had taken on it.

6 Q. Looking at the second sentence of the second paragraph

7 on the screen, you say:

8 "Apart from what has been stated in the USA

9 senator's letter, we have presently no evidence to

10 support the contention that the threats have recently

11 become more insistent and ominous causing Miss Nelson to

12 fear for her safety."

13 In this case you in Command Secretariat didn't have

14 the benefit of a Special Branch assessment, did you?

15 A. No, that's correct.

16 Q. And that line there in the second paragraph comes, I

17 think, from the Superintendent's and Complaints and

18 Discipline's memo, back up to Command Secretariat at

19 RNI-101-030. Can we look at that, please (displayed)?

20 Do you see at the very end in paragraph 3 he suggests

21 what should be said, and he says exactly what you then

22 put into your letter?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. You tell us in your statement that you often would take

25 what came into Command Secretariat from the regions or





1 whoever it was you had asked for information, and I

2 don't say this in a critical way, but you would cut and

3 paste?

4 A. That's correct. We would have taken abstracts from the

5 correspondence and put it together in a response.

6 Q. So what you have done here, it looks at any rate, is to

7 cut and paste the Complaints and Discipline

8 Superintendent's answer and put it in your letter to the

9 NIO?

10 A. And, again, based on my belief that the people in

11 Complaints and Discipline would have probably been most

12 up-to-date in terms of the current position on any

13 threats that -- the alleged threats that had come from

14 the RUC.

15 Q. But in fact what you were learning from the memorandum

16 is that the Complaints and Discipline Department didn't

17 have any evidence to suggest that the threats, et

18 cetera, et cetera, et cetera. It wasn't an answer from

19 the specialists in assessing threat, namely

20 Special Branch, was it?

21 A. I can't say what enquiries that the Superintendent,

22 Complaints and Discipline had made before he sent the

23 response back, but I would have expected them to be --

24 probably more knowledgeable in terms of the information

25 that was alleged to have come in relation to threats





1 from the RUC.

2 Q. Well, it looks -- if you turn over the page to

3 RNI-101-031 (displayed) -- from the second paragraph of

4 what he was saying to the local subdivisional commander,

5 as though what he was doing by passing it on to them was

6 to see whether there would be an assessment. Do you see

7 the very last sentence?

8 A. Yes, I do.

9 Q. He is really saying, "If you are going to take this

10 further, the investigating officer would be there to

11 give information to Special Branch". It looks certainly

12 at this stage as though no such thing had happened?

13 A. Certainly at that stage that appears as though it hadn't

14 happened at that stage, but what that suggests to me is

15 that the investigating officer probably had something to

16 contribute to the assessment because that investigating

17 officer would have been most up-to-date on those alleged

18 threats.

19 Q. Now, you mentioned before about the force order, and we

20 can look at that together, RNI-101-001 (displayed). And

21 this is the order that was in force at this stage in

22 1997. Paragraph 1, the starting point is to refer the

23 matter to local Special Branch. Now, that wasn't done

24 in this case, was it?

25 A. It wasn't done by Command Secretariat, no.





1 Q. No.

2 A. But, again, I would have expected, when the paperwork

3 went to -- the paperwork from the Superintendent,

4 Complaints and Discipline went to the local district or

5 subdivision, that is what they would have done to get

6 their assessment.

7 Q. But you didn't receive at this stage, or, indeed, at any

8 later stage, a confirmation that all of that had

9 happened at the local level or, indeed, the local

10 Special Branch level?

11 A. No, I have no knowledge of what actually went on between

12 the local subdivision and the Special Branch.

13 Q. No. Can you remember whether there was any follow-up to

14 this from the NIO?

15 A. I can't recall. There could have been.

16 Q. When officials contacted you about issues that there

17 were going on, would you have made a note? Would you

18 have recorded something in the file? How would that

19 work?

20 A. Certainly if there was anything I felt required to be

21 noted, I did make a note to the file of contacts. And

22 certainly it is -- I have seen it in the papers as well.

23 Notes would have been made certainly on the actual

24 report, the copy report.

25 Q. Yes. Can I ask you a general question about this? Was





1 this the first occasion you had dealt as

2 a Command Secretariat officer with an allegation of

3 a death threat against a defence lawyer?

4 A. By police officers?

5 Q. Yes.

6 A. I would expect so.

7 Q. Yes. Now, tracing the matter through to get a sense of

8 the volume of correspondence, which you talk about in

9 your statement, can we look next, please, at RNI-101-043

10 (displayed). This is another letter from Anne Colville.

11 Can we have RNI-101-044 on the screen as well, please

12 (displayed)?

13 We have moved on now to late July. So this is after

14 the Drumcree incident that you mentioned in your own

15 statement. And here is Anne Colville addressing herself

16 to your Chief Superintendent and effectively asking for

17 an update on the complaints.

18 Can I just ask you some questions about the way the

19 letter is phrased? First of all, do you see your

20 reference there, 97/195/21, on the left-hand side?

21 A. Oh, yes, I do.

22 Q. Excellent. There it is. Now, that was the reference

23 that had attached to the earlier correspondence we have

24 been looking at.

25 So when something came in like that, did that mean





1 that it would again go on the relevant

2 Command Secretariat file under that reference?

3 A. Yes. Generally a file would have started with the first

4 piece of correspondence that you had in, and as new

5 material come in, it was added to.

6 Q. So in the case of a large, possibly huge, volume of

7 correspondence such as this, the files would build and

8 build and build?

9 A. They would, that's correct.

10 Q. Which enabled, also, anybody who had to deal with

11 correspondence, new correspondence, as it came in,

12 obviously to check back and see what had happened in the

13 past?

14 A. Yes, the remainder of the paperwork should have been on

15 the file for people to look at.

16 Q. Thank you. So far as that's concerned, and the text of

17 the letter:

18 "Rosemary Nelson's name has been very much in the

19 news lately, not least in the Colin Duffy case."

20 That was the case, wasn't it, where Colin Duffy was

21 accused of the murder of two police officers in Lurgan?

22 A. That's correct.

23 Q. On the right-hand side of the screen, do you see:

24 "I would be most grateful if you could provide as

25 much background information on the above issues as soon





1 as possible, as the case has a high profile and needs

2 careful handling."?

3 You knew, did you, by this stage, that these matters

4 involving Rosemary Nelson had a high profile?

5 A. At that date, probably I would have, and certainly if

6 the NIO -- I can't just be absolutely sure on dates, but

7 I would expect so, yes.

8 Q. And so far as the next months before leading up to

9 Rosemary Nelson's murder is concerned, is it fair to say

10 that that profile, if anything, increased during 1998

11 with all the other events that I mentioned earlier

12 coming in across your desk in Command Secretariat?

13 A. Could I just be clear in terms of "the profile

14 increased"?

15 Q. Yes.

16 A. Is that in relation to the correspondence or her public

17 profile?

18 Q. The issues relating to Rosemary Nelson herself.

19 A. I think certainly the volume of correspondence seemed to

20 increase.

21 Q. But you were made aware, presumably by the NIO civil

22 servants you spoke to and by the regularity with which

23 they kept coming back to you for information, that it

24 was a politically sensitive issue, the question of

25 Rosemary Nelson and all the matters which were raised





1 about her?

2 A. There certainly was a lot of interest from groups both

3 within Northern Ireland and outside. So, yes, it was

4 a high profile issue.

5 Q. And that led them on occasion to be rather urgent in

6 their requests for replies, for input, for advice from

7 the police?

8 A. Certainly on occasions they would have come looking for

9 urgent responses. However, if the information wasn't

10 with us, then we relied very heavily on people in

11 districts to -- and, sorry, in departments and

12 subdivisions to get us that information back.

13 Q. Just moving on to what happened to this letter, you

14 forward it to the Complaints Department, RNI-101-045

15 (displayed) 29 July, and back comes a response from

16 them, which I would like to show you. RNI-101-047 and

17 RNI-101-048 if we could have both on the screen, please

18 (displayed). Thank you.

19 This is an update for you on the state of the

20 complaints, the Lawyers Alliance complaint first; do you

21 see that? And a discussion of what wasn't in fact

22 happening in relation to it. The paragraph I would like

23 to show you in particular is on the next page:

24 "No other witnesses have been interviewed ..."

25 Do you see paragraph 5?





1 A. I do.

2 Q. Thank you:

3 "Mrs Nelson has ignored a request for permission to

4 be given to interview her client, Colin Duffy. No other

5 ..."

6 Then "witnesses" is put in inverted commas:

7 "... have been identified."

8 Then this comment:

9 "Mr Lynch's allegations largely consist of hearsay,

10 rumour and innuendo, mostly of a very general nature."

11 So it looks as though some irritation is being

12 expressed here about the basis of the allegations.

13 Was there a feeling, did you think, in Complaints

14 and Discipline that these were essentially vague and

15 possibly ill-founded allegations?

16 A. I don't know -- I mean, I can't say what was in the

17 mindset of the Complaints and Discipline people, but

18 I sense here was a department or a branch who really

19 wanted to get more information to allow them to

20 investigate the complaints. And, of course, the

21 investigation process would have been supervised by the

22 ICPC.

23 So for them to actually do their job, they would

24 have required -- and certainly if I was an investigator

25 on this case, I would always be trying to get best





1 evidence, get it direct from the complainant, if you

2 can, rather than deal with hearsay.

3 Q. So in a sense they were being frustrated in the

4 investigation as a result of non-cooperation?

5 A. Certainly the investigation would have been more

6 difficult if they didn't have that first-hand

7 information or best available information.

8 Q. To what extent was that question of what was going on

9 with these complaints discussed between you and your

10 colleagues in Command Secretariat at this stage?

11 A. I can't recall if there was any discussion amongst

12 Command Secretariat people.

13 Q. Can we just look at the reply that goes out to

14 Anne Colville from Command Secretariat, RNI-101-056

15 (displayed)? Again, could we have RNI-101-057 on the

16 page, please (displayed)?

17 He sets out the history of the investigation. This

18 is the Chief Superintendent.

19 A. That's correct.

20 Q. And says at the next page, do you see, very much

21 a quotation there from the memorandum we have just

22 looked at?

23 Now, was this something that you can remember

24 discussing with the Chief Superintendent at this stage?

25 A. I have no recollection of talking to him about it.





1 Q. But it looks at least possible, doesn't it, that this

2 was another question of cutting and pasting?

3 A. Certainly the letter there is -- it appears to me to

4 have been taken from the report that had come in.

5 Q. Yes. Now, the next incident in the saga I would like to

6 look at with you, please, comes at the end of August.

7 This is in relation to the pending visit of the Special

8 Rapporteur, the UN Special Rapporteur, Mr Cumaraswamy.

9 Can we look, please, at RNI-101-058 (displayed)?

10 This is a letter with which we are perhaps not so

11 familiar, but it comes not from the Police Division but

12 from the Security Policy and Operations Division?

13 A. That's the other branch of the NIO that I referred to in

14 terms of --

15 Q. Yes, and with whom you said you had contact in your

16 role?

17 A. And it would have been in this part of the NIO that I

18 would have had my liaison office.

19 Q. Thank you. So 28 August, addressed to the

20 Superintendent this time and it attaches a letter from

21 the Rapporteur himself.

22 Now, the handwriting is yours, I think, isn't it?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. If we turn over to RNI-101-059 (displayed), we see what

25 the Rapporteur was saying. He is writing in fact to the





1 British Ambassador at the UN in Geneva, but he says,

2 under 1 first, that there are further allegations here

3 in relation to the detention of Colin Duffy, and they

4 became complaints in due course by him and

5 Rosemary Nelson.

6 Then over the next page at 2, the allegation that

7 you mention in your statement, namely that

8 Rosemary Nelson had been assaulted in the course of the

9 Drumcree confrontation earlier that year. Do you see?

10 A. That's correct.

11 Q. So these were, as it were, two further examples, weren't

12 they, of incidents involving Rosemary Nelson and police

13 officers, which came to your attention not via a NGO

14 but, in this case, via an official of the

15 United Nations?

16 A. That's correct.

17 Q. And that presumably meant, for you and your colleagues

18 as for the civil servants at the NIO, that they had to

19 be dealt with seriously?

20 A. Certainly they would have expected a response, a timely

21 response, and obviously to try and address the questions

22 that were posed.

23 Q. Now, is it fair to say that this sort of correspondence

24 coming from this source would have been dealt with in

25 rather a different way to correspondence emanating from





1 NGOs, for example?

2 A. I'm not sure. I'm not so sure. I suppose it depended

3 where the letter was sent to within Command Secretariat

4 as to who dealt with it.

5 The correspondence still come into

6 Command Secretariat. A decision was taken as to who

7 needed to be consulted, or who the correspondence needed

8 to go to, to get the response. So in terms of the

9 initial action, other than perhaps taking maybe an early

10 decision that the Chief Constable needed to be aware of

11 it or the Chief Superintendent needed to be aware of it,

12 the correspondence would have been dealt with in largely

13 the same manner.

14 Q. So you are not conscious of the approach within your

15 office being in any way affected by the source of the

16 allegations?

17 A. I have no recollection of any different arrangement for

18 this correspondence than with other correspondence that

19 had come in.

20 Q. But what this shows us is that by the end

21 of August 1997, there were a number of types of

22 allegation coming in to your office with Rosemary Nelson

23 at the centre?

24 A. That's correct.

25 Q. Did you at this stage begin to ask yourself what on





1 earth was going on out there?

2 A. I'm not so sure that I actually had considered it in

3 that term -- what on earth is going on out there -- but

4 certainly I was conscious of a large volume of

5 correspondence and concerns being raised.

6 But I can't sit here now and say after ten years

7 what exactly was in my thought process. Certainly it

8 was a concern with all this correspondence coming in,

9 and I think that is why later on, you know, obviously

10 the Chief Constable had been briefed on stuff and why he

11 probably took the actions he did in terms of his

12 personal involvement in it.

13 Q. But was it a matter that, as the months went on and

14 correspondence came in from more and more sources

15 raising new matters, that became something of concern to

16 you?

17 A. Certainly I was -- I mean, I would have personally been

18 concerned that we weren't -- I suppose, addressing these

19 issues in the way that the authors of the letters had

20 wanted. So that's why they kept coming.

21 I would certainly have liked to have been able to

22 see resolutions and satisfaction, but clearly that

23 satisfaction wasn't coming because the letters kept

24 coming into us and the correspondence kept coming in.

25 Q. So far as the allegations concerned goes, what view did





1 you take of the substance of what was being alleged?

2 A. In terms, sorry, of the complaint allegations?

3 Q. Did you think it possible that these things had

4 happened?

5 A. I certainly would not -- I wasn't in a position to say

6 that they hadn't happened. So certainly I wouldn't have

7 formed -- that was my view. We sent them to whoever had

8 to deal with them. I wasn't going to dismiss them and

9 nor would I because I was not in a position to say

10 whether or not the allegations were correct, but they

11 needed to be investigated.

12 Q. Just moving to another source of questioning and

13 concern, namely in the Anglo-Irish Secretariat. If we

14 look at RNI-101-065 (displayed), here in a letter from

15 the NIO of 2 September we have the Irish civil servants

16 on behalf of the Irish Government raising questions,

17 concerns, as they put it, about this same issue of

18 Colin Duffy. And you see what is set out there in the

19 body of the letter, which is in the second paragraph.

20 That was also a feature of the correspondence you

21 dealt with, wasn't it: that requests were coming in from

22 the Irish side and the Anglo-Irish Secretariat via the

23 NIO to you, seeking answers to issues raised in relation

24 to Rosemary Nelson?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. Now, can I ask you to look specifically into the middle

2 of this paragraph, where it says:

3 "In addition, his solicitor, Miss Rosemary Nelson,

4 strenuously denies any responsibility of Duffy's

5 involvement and has expressed concern about the

6 reliability of the female prosecution witness."

7 There is a suggestion, as I think you know, in some

8 of our material, which we call the Part 2 material, that

9 Rosemary Nelson was suspected of being involved in

10 trying to discredit this witness, the prosecution

11 witness.

12 Was that something you were aware of?

13 A. I certainly have no knowledge of that. I didn't pick

14 that up from the papers that were disclosed to me, that

15 there was any suggestion that Rosemary Nelson had tried

16 to discredit that witness.

17 Certainly I had picked up from the disclosure papers

18 that there were a lot of people expressing concern about

19 her credibility, but I hadn't picked up that it was

20 actually -- other than the solicitor actually raising

21 the concern, I wasn't aware that there was some

22 suggestion she was trying to discredit the witness.

23 Q. And you certainly weren't aware of this at the time?

24 A. Absolutely not, no.

25 Q. Now, just two days after that, we see a letter from





1 an MP at Westminster, RNI-101-066 (displayed),

2 Mr Chris Mullin, and attached to it at RNI-101-068

3 (displayed) -- again, this is material with which you

4 are perhaps not so familiar -- is a lengthy document

5 dealing with the substance of the case that appears to

6 have emanated from Rosemary Nelson's office. If you

7 look at the bottom of RNI0-101-069 (displayed), under 5,

8 do you see right at the very bottom -- if we could

9 enlarge that, please -- a suggestion that the question

10 of Colin Duffy and the behaviour of the RUC was of such

11 blatant irregularity and illegality that Mr Duffy and

12 his solicitors were each forced to complain on two

13 occasions?

14 So here, this time from an elected representative,

15 you were dealing in Command Secretariat with some pretty

16 strong comment about the way in which the police had

17 handled the case?

18 A. Yes, that's correct.

19 Q. So far as these issues are concerned, we can see your

20 work on it at RNI-101-072 (displayed). Here you are

21 sending a memo to your superior officer, aren't you, to

22 the Chief Superintendent? Do you see the top right-hand

23 side?

24 A. That's correct.

25 Q. And what you have done, haven't you, is to give him the





1 relevant files, the Command Secretariat files

2 presumably? Do you see that, first sentence?

3 A. Yes, sorry, that's correct.

4 Q. So that he could consider the matter presumably. Then

5 you say:

6 "Although Complaints and Discipline will be aware

7 of, I believe, all of these allegations through

8 complaints made at the time, I ..."

9 That, I think, probably says "fear" or "I believe"

10 or something like that:

11 "... we should copy everything to them just in case.

12 For this reason, I don't think we can conceal the

13 references to the Irish side."

14 Can you help with that last sentence?

15 A. In terms of the Irish side?

16 Q. Yes.

17 A. Certainly from my recollection, within

18 Command Secretariat -- and, of course, this is sort of

19 ten years ago when the politics of Northern Ireland were

20 probably more difficult than they are now -- and it

21 would have caused, I think, some concern in some areas

22 if the RUC were seen to be answering questions directly

23 from the Irish.

24 So our policy -- we knew in Command Secretariat

25 where the questions would have originated from, but we





1 didn't send it out around the police force in case it

2 would leak into the press and cause difficulty.

3 Q. In case it would leak into the press from the police?

4 A. In case someone within the police organisation would

5 release it to the press and then potentially

6 difficulties arise about the Irish side asking questions

7 directly of the RUC.

8 Q. Yes. Now, following that, we see a letter from

9 Amnesty International. This is 18 September,

10 RNI-101-094 (displayed), addressed to the

11 Chief Constable.

12 It would have come, I think, to your office to get

13 together a response, wouldn't it?

14 A. I would expect so.

15 Q. Yes. And we can see the nature of the allegations set

16 out in this copy if we turn over the page. Somebody has

17 put A, B, C down the side. RNI-101-095 is over the

18 page, please (displayed). Do you see there?

19 A. I do.

20 Q. The specific points are made, and at the bottom of the

21 page at D, the question of whether investigation into

22 the allegations has been undertaken. And over the page

23 at RNI-101-096 (displayed):

24 "Will you tell us whether members of the RUC have

25 recently been instructed that such remarks and threats





1 against counsel will not be tolerated?"

2 Then another reference to death threats to

3 Rosemary Nelson in the paragraph marked "E". Do you see

4 that?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Thank you. Now, so far as your response is concerned,

7 it goes on 26 September at RNI-101-097 (displayed), and

8 you say that he has been charged and this is what is

9 going on, that it would not, therefore, be appropriate

10 to comment, that you are investigating complaints.

11 So what you do there is to deal with the existing

12 proceedings and the question of the complaints?

13 A. That's correct.

14 Q. What you don't address is the detailed comment and

15 concern expressed about the threats, do you?

16 A. Well, there is certainly no reference in that

17 correspondence to dealing specifically -- in relation to

18 the threats.

19 Q. Do you think it is fair to say that this was a feature

20 of the correspondence, that people would write in on one

21 topic, namely, "We are concerned that this woman is

22 being threatened", and often the response would focus

23 rather more on what was being done by way of the

24 investigation of complaints?

25 A. I think -- and it was the point I referred to earlier





1 on -- because the complaints were very closely related

2 to the death threats in terms of the allegations against

3 the RUC, that would have been a source of information

4 for us to enable us to deal or assess how the threats

5 were dealt with and what further action was required,

6 and -- which I'm sure we will probably come on to later

7 on -- was the action I took in terms of asking if we

8 should offer Mrs Nelson crime prevention advice.

9 Q. Absolutely.

10 A. On that basis, because whilst there was no specific --

11 or certainly I wasn't aware of any intelligence to

12 suggest there was a specific threat, we had all these

13 letters coming in saying that Mrs Nelson was fearful of

14 her safety and there were concerns for her safety.

15 I couldn't or wasn't made aware of any intelligence

16 to say that that was so. So that's why I then, as a

17 further point, asked if we could offer crime prevention

18 advice.

19 Q. At this stage, September 1997, of course you hadn't

20 asked --

21 A. No, not at this stage.

22 Q. And you hadn't sought a threat assessment from

23 Special Branch, we know that?

24 A. Not directly. There was no --

25 Q. What had happened had been initiated by the





1 Superintendent of Complaints and Discipline?

2 A. I can't recall at this stage if any of the

3 correspondence had gone to Special Branch.

4 Q. No. Now, presumably, though, when you saw the reference

5 in a letter like this -- and we have seen a number of

6 them -- you must have thought back to those earlier

7 exchanges in April/May/June 1997 and did it not occur to

8 you at that stage that you ought to chase up, to find

9 out what had happened on the ground?

10 A. I can't recall whether there was any conversation in

11 relation to this particular incident -- issue with the

12 local police.

13 Q. But, again, perhaps with hindsight, in a sense it was an

14 obvious gap which needed to be filled, wasn't it?

15 A. As I have said, I cannot actually recall what the

16 individual discussions would have been with local

17 police. I would have expected us to have been made

18 aware whether or not there was intelligence to support

19 the threat, and certainly that would have been actioned.

20 But without anything on paper, you know, I can't recall

21 here whether or not -- what those exchanges were.

22 THE CHAIRMAN: Would you yourself have contacted local

23 divisional commander in this situation by telephone or

24 ...?

25 A. On some occasions we would have had conversation with





1 the local police, but not a lot. A lot of it was done

2 on paper, but occasionally we would have had contact,

3 but I can't remember whether or not there was any

4 contact in relation to this.

5 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

6 MR PHILLIPS: Sir, would that be a convenient moment?


8 Mr (name redacted), before the witness leaves, would you

9 please confirm that all the cameras have been switched

10 off?

11 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

12 THE CHAIRMAN: There will be an interval of a quarter of an

13 hour. Please escort the witness out.

14 (11.35 am)

15 (Short break)

16 (11.55 am)

17 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Currans, may we go through the checklist

18 before the witness comes in?

19 Is the public area screen fully in place, locked and

20 the key secured?

21 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

22 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the fire doors on either side of the

23 screen closed?

24 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

25 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the technical support screens in place





1 and securely fastened?

2 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

3 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than Inquiry personnel and

4 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

5 of this chamber?

6 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

7 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr (name redacted), can you confirm that the two

8 witness cameras have been switched off and shrouded?

9 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

10 THE CHAIRMAN: All the other cameras have been switched off?

11 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

12 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

13 Bring the witness in, please.

14 The cameras on the Panel, Inquiry personnel and the

15 Full Participants' legal representatives may now be

16 switched back on.

17 MR PHILLIPS: We were looking at the build-up of

18 correspondence at the end of 1997. Can I ask you to

19 look, please, at another request for your assistance in

20 Command Secretariat on 1 September, RNI-101-082

21 (displayed)?

22 Here there is a reference to another

23 Amnesty International letter and the request is being

24 made for some lines to take. Do you see that in the

25 second paragraph?





1 A. I do.

2 Q. Now, if we look at the letter it is concerned with, it

3 is an earlier letter from Amnesty International directed

4 to the Secretary of State herself, 21 August,

5 RNI-101-084 (displayed). What the NIO civil servant did

6 was to highlight various aspects of the letter that she

7 particularly wanted your input and response on. I would

8 just like to show you a couple of them.

9 At the bottom of RNI-101-085 (displayed) is the

10 question of:

11 "Taking measures to inform all members of the RUC

12 and others that come into contact with detainees that

13 disparaging comments about a detainee's lawyer are

14 forbidden and to ensure that such incidents don't happen

15 in the future."

16 Then over the page at RNI-101-086 (displayed) at the

17 top, a reference again to death threats. So two

18 Amnesty International letters coming in to your

19 department, both referring to death threats, within

20 a few weeks of each other.

21 If we go back to the NIO letter of 1 September,

22 RNI-101-082 (displayed), you will see at the bottom of

23 the page -- it is not a very good copy, I am afraid --

24 under the heading "Paragraph 7 and 8":

25 " ... allegation that police personnel made





1 disparaging remarks about Mrs Nelson. This interrelates

2 with the issue of alleged death threats against

3 Mrs Nelson and Superintendent Maxwell's letter of 6 June

4 ..."

5 That is the one we looked at earlier:

6 "... covered the latest state of play on the

7 investigation."

8 Just pausing there, before looking at the rest of

9 the letter, here the NIO were specifically directing you

10 to an earlier letter; your Chief Superintendent is the

11 recipient. Presumably this would have been an occasion

12 to go back and look at the file -- the reference is

13 given there -- and see what had happened in relation to

14 that issue dealt with in June?

15 A. Presumably. I can't remember if a directive actually

16 went out, but it may have done in relation to expected

17 behaviour for solicitors and lawyers.

18 Q. There is nothing, I have to say, that we have found to

19 suggest that it did. And, indeed, the response from

20 Command Secretariat -- can I just ask you before I put

21 that to you: did you deal with this particular letter,

22 do you think?

23 A. I can't recall from the disclosure bundle. If I saw the

24 correspondence, I could obviously confirm. I think

25 I looked at some of this material this morning. There





1 was a couple of late pieces given to me.

2 Q. Yes.

3 A. And I think the original Amnesty correspondence may not

4 have come to Command Secretariat because there is no

5 reference in the NIO letter to it being attached. And

6 generally they would have made a reference in the

7 letter, "I refer to the attached" or "please see

8 attached", and I don't see it there.

9 Q. I see. So in this case you think they may just have

10 relayed the points and said, "What do you think about

11 this?"

12 A. That is my impression from the way the letter's written.

13 Q. The importance of that is it would be very much for them

14 to take up from the letter the points that they felt

15 required a response?

16 A. That's correct.

17 Q. So far as that's concerned, if you just look at the top

18 of the document on the screen, it does look as though it

19 was one of five in terms of the pages sent. Do you see?

20 And this is a two-page letter and the Amnesty letter is

21 a three-page letter --

22 A. It could have come.

23 Q. Yes. Now, so far as that is concerned, the next stage,

24 as far as we can see, of information coming into

25 Command Secretariat was at RNI-101-103 (displayed),





1 13 October. And this is another Irish side case, where,

2 arising out of an incident involving a client of

3 Rosemary Nelson, Christine McAuley, they say, in the

4 second paragraph, that:

5 "The RIR unit at a checkpoint had made abusive and

6 threatening remarks about her."

7 Do you see that?

8 A. I do.

9 Q. There you were dealing not with an allegation that the

10 police had made inappropriate or threatening remarks,

11 but the Army or members of the RIR had done so?

12 A. That's correct.

13 Q. So, again, rather as I showed you with the Special

14 Rapporteur, that, as it were, adds yet another element

15 to the mixture, doesn't it, because you are looking now

16 at allegations in relation to another part of the

17 security forces?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. Yes. Now, the concern is explained here, the Irish

20 side's concern, that:

21 "The alleged threats directed at Mrs Nelson ..."

22 This is the third paragraph:

23 "... and would be grateful for reassurance that

24 steps are being taken to deal with this matter,

25 including offering some ..."





1 I think that probably says "form", but perhaps it

2 doesn't matter:

3 "... of reassurance to Mrs Nelson."

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. This did fall to you to deal with, as we can see from

6 the next page, RNI-101-129 (displayed), and it is under

7 the heading "Complaint against Royal Irish Regiment

8 patrol". So we can see it is the same issue.

9 You address yourself to the

10 Assistant Chief Constable for the South Region. You say

11 you:

12 "... attach two pieces of correspondence concerning

13 the above subject forwarded for your attention."

14 Then this:

15 "There is no suggestion in the papers of a complaint

16 against the police. I would be grateful for a draft

17 reply."

18 So you didn't raise specifically with the

19 Assistant Chief Constable, did you, the concern

20 expressed by the Irish side about (a) the threats, and

21 (b) their request for some form of reassurance that

22 steps were being taken to deal with that?

23 A. No, it is certainly not raised in the correspondence.

24 However, the correspondence was sent with my covering

25 memo for ACC South to see.





1 Q. But in a sense, surely, in that second sentence, you

2 were in a sense dismissing the letter or the Irish

3 side's concerns by pointing out that there was no

4 suggestion of a complaint against the police?

5 A. What I was suggesting in that -- what I would have been

6 suggesting -- we had a different arrangement for dealing

7 with complaints against military personnel and dealing

8 with complaints against police.

9 If there had have been a complaint against police,

10 it would have had to go to Complaints and Discipline.

11 Because it was a complaint against the military, it was

12 the responsibility of the local area to investigate

13 those as potential criminal matters. So it would have

14 gone to them, and that's why that would have been

15 highlighted like that. That's where it was going to.

16 This isn't a complaint against police; it is really

17 a complaint against military.

18 Q. So in other words it wasn't the police's business?

19 A. Certainly if there was a criminal complaint against the

20 military, it is the police business to deal with.

21 I have seen from the subsequent disclosure documents

22 that it was referred then on to the military to deal

23 with because obviously the local police interpreted it

24 as not being a criminal matter.

25 Q. What about the point about the threat, the substance of





1 the whole thing and the question of giving her some form

2 of reassurance?

3 A. I don't know what action the ACC South directed when he

4 received that correspondence.

5 Q. Well, the report back you got came at RNI-101-160

6 (displayed). It is dated 27 October, addressed to the

7 Subdivisional Commander and it is a factual report about

8 the incident. And the officer giving this report, who

9 is an inspector, having set out the history at the

10 bottom of the page, says:

11 "In relation to the matters raised by the

12 Northern Ireland Office that are attached to this report

13 over the page, at no time has Mrs Nelson informed me

14 that the remarks made to her client were abusive and

15 threatening, nor did she state that the Army had carried

16 out a very aggressive interview of her client."

17 So that's dealing with the position of the client,

18 not with Rosemary Nelson.

19 So that's the report that came back to you. Nothing

20 else emerged from ACC South, as far as the file

21 discloses, and you deal with the NIO correspondence at

22 the beginning of November, 6 November, RNI-101-168

23 (displayed). You say that:

24 "Rosemary Nelson had made a complaint against

25 members of the military patrol. As the complaint was of





1 a non-criminal nature, it was referred to military."

2 And that's it?

3 A. As I said, the response went back to the NIO.

4 Q. Yes. You didn't deal with the question of threats that

5 had been raised, did you?

6 A. Could I just see the previous report?

7 Q. You mean the NIO letter?

8 A. No, the report that came from the local --

9 Q. Yes, RNI-101-160 (displayed).

10 A. Yes, and just the second page, please.

11 Q. RNI-101-161 (displayed).

12 A. I mean, that is obviously suggesting to me -- and I

13 can't remember my thinking at the time -- that there had

14 been a conversation with Mrs Nelson by the inspector.

15 Q. But the question I was asking, you see, is what you

16 reported back to the NIO. They raised various issues

17 with you, not just out of curiosity or because they

18 wanted to pass the time of day, but because the Irish

19 side, the Anglo-Irish Secretariat, had raised the issues

20 in the context of the two government bodies. And they

21 raised issues about threats and they raised issues about

22 questions of reassurance.

23 Now, your letter, RNI-101-168 (displayed), doesn't

24 deal with either of them, does it?

25 A. Certainly the letter only deals with the complaint





1 aspect.

2 Q. Yes, and that is a theme of this correspondence: that

3 however much people raise questions of threats, however

4 they are doing it, whether it is NGOs, whether it is MPs

5 whether it is in this case representatives of the Irish

6 Government, the answers in this sort of correspondence

7 focus on whether or not there is a complaint and what is

8 happening?

9 A. I think the issue of the threats would have -- had there

10 have been intelligence, something coming in to us to

11 confirm or support the allegations of a threat, then we

12 would have been able to report back to the NIO to enable

13 them to consider some other sort of action in terms of

14 Key Persons Protection. I can't recall how many -- just

15 exactly -- whether or not we had received any

16 Special Branch reports at this stage to say that they

17 had no intelligence of a threat.

18 Q. Well, what we looked at earlier in the May/June incident

19 was the fact that there is no evidence on the file of

20 any request for an assessment at this stage, and there

21 is nothing to suggest in the file either, is there, that

22 you received, as it were, off their own bat, any

23 information from Special Branch dealing with whether or

24 not there was substance in the allegations of threat?

25 A. Certainly the correspondence that went in relation to





1 this to ACC South that attached the two pieces of

2 correspondence, I would have expected him, in his

3 responsibility for that area, to deal with the whole

4 correspondence and that would have included if there

5 were any issues of threats. Yes, that was not reported

6 back to us.

7 Q. But in circumstances of that kind, wouldn't it have been

8 incumbent on you to say, "Hang on a moment, I sent you

9 this raising specific questions. You have only given me

10 an answer in the report we have seen on the complaint

11 file. What is your answer? I have got to speak to the

12 NIO. I have got to write to the NIO to give them an

13 answer"?

14 A. Certainly I can't recall any specific conversation with

15 the ACC's office in relation to that aspect, but, again,

16 I would say that when the correspondence went, there

17 would have been responsibility on the local division to

18 deal with all aspects of the correspondence.

19 Q. Now, so far as the immediate background to the February

20 threat assessment is concerned, can we look, please, at

21 what was happening in the early part of the next year,

22 1998. At RNI-101-184 (displayed), we see another

23 request for information from the NIO, this time

24 addressed to you from Lesley Foster within the Police

25 Division and attaching a letter from British Irish





1 Rights Watch. That is at RNI-101-185 (displayed) and

2 that's dated 22 January, and it is part, as we know, of

3 the regular to-ing and fro-ing from the British Irish

4 Rights Watch to the NIO.

5 Now, in the letter you received from the civil

6 servant, you were asked for a response and told in the

7 second line -- this is RNI-101-184 (displayed) -- that

8 the Minister would be responding to the letter and that

9 he had raised a specific question in relation to whether

10 or not in the context of the investigation

11 Rosemary Nelson had received a response.

12 Now, over the months and years you dealt with these

13 issues, you had to produce answers for a number of NGOs,

14 didn't you?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. Not just this one, but, for instance, the Committee on

17 the Administration of Justice?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. And also, as we have seen, Amnesty International?

20 A. That's correct.

21 Q. Now, did you regard the fact that they persistently

22 raised the Rosemary Nelson case as being part of their

23 campaigning?

24 A. Sorry, are you asking did I see this as some sort of

25 campaign?





1 Q. Yes.

2 A. No, I wouldn't interpret it as a campaign. I saw it as

3 people writing to us expressing concerns.

4 Q. Was it easy for you in dealing with letters of this kind

5 to separate the NGO and the fact that they had their own

6 issues, their own concerns on the one hand and the

7 particular case of the individual, in this example

8 Rosemary Nelson?

9 A. Sorry, can I just --

10 Q. Was it easy for you to separate what they were doing

11 with their regular correspondence and the fact that they

12 had concerns about issues, which were longstanding, and

13 the fact that in this particular case they were actually

14 talking to you about the circumstances of an individual?

15 A. All of these groups wrote to us about a range of people,

16 so I would have dealt with it in that vein.

17 Here was a piece of correspondence coming in from

18 a group expressing concern. We would have looked at the

19 correspondence and dealt with it in a way that we

20 thought the writer required.

21 Q. Did you ever, you and your colleagues, greet the latest

22 piece of correspondence passed on by one of these NGOs

23 with something of a weary groan?

24 A. I certainly did not personally and I have no knowledge

25 of people within Command Secretariat ever doing that,





1 and I would have expected that the people within

2 Command Secretariat were professional. They had a job

3 to do and part of that was dealing with whatever comes

4 through the door.

5 Q. You do not think that the fact that the concerns were

6 expressed from these bodies meant that they were treated

7 with a large pinch of salt, for example?

8 A. No, I don't believe so. I don't think so.

9 Q. Now, so far as what happened to this letter is

10 concerned, you passed it on to the Complaints and

11 Discipline Department, RNI-101-189 (displayed) and you

12 received a lengthy response from that department at the

13 next page, RNI-101-192 (displayed), and it is a two-page

14 response. If we could look at RNI-101-193 as well,

15 please (displayed). Thank you.

16 Having set out for you all the detail in relation to

17 the state of the complaints and refuting the suggestion

18 that the RUC or the ICPC had not been corresponding with

19 her -- do you see that's at the bottom of the left-hand

20 page? -- the writer, who is a superintendent in that

21 department, goes on to say in the third paragraph from

22 the end on the right:

23 "Regarding the reply to BIRW, it is not clear if

24 they are asking on behalf of Mrs Nelson or are solely

25 pursuing their own agenda in this instance. We have not





1 had to communicate with them on any previous occasion.

2 I am, therefore, reluctant to reply in detail about

3 ongoing investigations where they do not have the

4 express consent of the complainant to act on her

5 behalf."

6 So he is making two points, isn't he: The one about

7 confidentiality -- was it appropriate to disclose

8 matters about the investigation; but the other, whether

9 this was really them asking on behalf of the individual

10 or whether it was just part of their own agenda?

11 A. That's correct.

12 Q. So even if you didn't have that approach to some of this

13 correspondence, it was obviously an approach, namely

14 that this was all part of a wider agenda that colleagues

15 of yours within the police force had?

16 A. Certainly -- I can't comment on exactly what his

17 thinking was, but he does -- or she does use the term

18 "pursuing their own agenda" in this instance. But I

19 don't know what was in the thinking --

20 Q. Did you at any stage feel, for example, that the NGOs

21 were themselves being manipulated, taking or being taken

22 advantage of by people who had a wider campaign in order

23 to undermine or discredit the RUC?

24 A. I would have -- I certainly -- that thought would never

25 have come into my head. I would have expected the





1 people -- and I knew some of the folks working in those

2 various NGOs. They were experienced people. So I don't

3 think they would have been easily led by other people

4 and just certainly serving somebody's agenda. Certainly

5 that was never my belief.

6 Q. Was it a point of view you heard expressed by

7 colleagues?

8 A. I mean, I have no recollection of it ever said within

9 Command Secretariat, and I certainly wouldn't have had

10 any recollection of it being said outside.

11 Q. Just reminding you, the origin of this little passage of

12 correspondence was a letter from the NIO saying that the

13 Minister was going to reply.

14 Now, was it an usual thing for the Minister to

15 become involved in correspondence about the detail of

16 complaints investigations?

17 A. There certainly were occasions when the Minister or,

18 indeed, the Secretary of State became personally

19 involved in correspondence.

20 Q. Presumably you would have taken that also as a fair

21 reflection at this stage, early 1998, of the political

22 significance of all of these issues?

23 A. Yes, that's correct.

24 Q. This, then, is the immediate background to the February

25 threat assessment and that's a matter, unlike the





1 earlier one, that you do, indeed, deal with in your

2 witness statement. So what I would like to do, please,

3 is not to remind you of all of the material -- obviously

4 we will look at the material as we go through, but I

5 don't think that's necessary in this particular case.

6 But I hope we might have a useful diagram to see,

7 setting out what happened in a very simple form.

8 Do we have a February 1998 threat assessment slide

9 to show, please (displayed)? We do.

10 Now, here, in as simple a form as we can and in

11 order to reduce the need to be constantly flicking

12 through these bundles, we have shown what happened in

13 a diagram. So that, do you see, the letter which we

14 will look at in a minute comes in, it comes to you --

15 the second box -- and you then send it down the chain

16 from the ACC South to the Divisional Commander, the

17 Subdivisional Commander and then down to local

18 Special Branch?

19 A. That's correct.

20 Q. And then the arrows on the left-hand side show, as it

21 were, the information coming back up, so as to enable

22 you, the final arrow, to answer the original letter.

23 Now, if we just look at how it was all initiated at

24 RNI-101-196 (displayed), it is a letter of

25 23 February 1998 referring to a meeting with the group





1 of lawyers, the Lawyers Alliance -- we have seen

2 reference to them earlier -- recording their deep

3 concerns over the safety of Rosemary Nelson. We have

4 also heard these concerns voiced by other organisations

5 and individuals over recent months.

6 So when you received that in Command Secretariat,

7 you will all have known that that was correct, that

8 various people and individuals had been expressing

9 concern about her security over various months?

10 A. That's correct.

11 Q. He said:

12 "In case these comment were not made to the

13 Chief Constable or you have not picked them up

14 elsewhere, I thought I should write to pass them on."

15 Then this point, he raises:

16 "If this has not already happened as a result of

17 other complaints about RUC threats ... then a situation

18 where such concerns continue to be expressed by those

19 who apparently met her, it might be prudent to consider

20 whether or not she needs to be approached and given

21 advice on her security. I would be grateful if you

22 could let me know if and, if so, when Mrs Nelson has

23 been given such advice. The question will continue to

24 be asked and I should like to be able to respond

25 proactively."





1 Now, what I would like to do with you, please, is to

2 see if we can understand what your likely reaction to

3 this correspondence would have been.

4 Clearly, it was a return to the issue of safety and

5 Rosemary Nelson's position, wasn't it?

6 A. That's correct.

7 Q. And it came on top of all of the correspondence that you

8 and I have now looked at generated since April/May the

9 previous year?

10 A. That's correct.

11 Q. And it referred specifically in the second sentence of

12 the second paragraph to the possibility that something

13 had actually been done about it as a result of earlier

14 or other, as it says, complaints about the RUC. "RUC

15 threats", do you see?

16 A. Something had actually been done?

17 Q. If you look in that second sentence:

18 "If this has not already happened ..."

19 He is saying. In other words, if the advice on her

20 security hasn't already been done. What he is pointing

21 out is that it might have happened as a result of other

22 complaints; do you see that?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Now, when you looked back at the file, therefore, you

25 were able to see that there was no record of what had in





1 fact happened on the ground as a result of the earlier

2 exchanges?

3 A. There certainly was no record on the Command Secretariat

4 files.

5 Q. No. And nor, when you looked back at the earlier

6 correspondence, could you see anything in response to

7 the later correspondence of July and August

8 and September and October and November and early 1998.

9 There was nothing there in your dealing, in your

10 department, with the correspondence to suggest that you

11 had asked this question, "What has been done on the

12 ground"?

13 A. I recall from one of the responses that the division did

14 say that they were providing attention, despite -- even

15 though there was no -- a specific threat, they were

16 providing attention to her office and her home,

17 I believe was on one of the pieces of correspondence.

18 Q. I think that comes out after this. We will see that in

19 a minute. But so far as the material we have been

20 looking at together and which is in the file, there was

21 nothing reporting up to Command Secretariat, was there,

22 as to whether any advice had been given to her?

23 A. Certainly I'm not aware of anything on our files at that

24 time, about specific advice given.

25 Q. So presumably that was something that you were anxious





1 to check in the first instance: what has been done

2 so far?

3 A. Is this where we are leading on to my request for

4 specific advice?

5 Q. I'm just asking you, when you saw this letter and saw

6 the point that was being specifically raised by the NIO,

7 the first thing you would want to do was to check

8 whether something had already been done?

9 A. I think it was two things. First of all, I wanted to

10 check when the local -- and, of course, this letter is

11 addressed to the Chief Superintendent.

12 Q. Indeed.

13 A. But if I have dealt with it -- and I can't recall; it is

14 probably if the papers -- I would have wanted to

15 check -- first of all, get it to the district or the

16 division to deal with the concerns again was the first

17 thing, to see whether or not there was any further

18 information. And then secondly, whenever that response

19 come back was then to put the added request as to

20 whether or not we should offer her advice.

21 Q. Can I just ask you a question about the first part of

22 that second paragraph:

23 "In case these comments were not made to the

24 Chief Constable ..."

25 Our understanding is that there was a meeting





1 between the delegation from the Lawyers Alliance and the

2 Chief Constable at about this time. Can I take it that

3 you did not attend that meeting?

4 A. It would have been highly unlikely. I didn't.

5 Q. When you received the letter in Command Secretariat, did

6 you seek to find out whether something had been said

7 direct to the Chief Constable by the delegation?

8 A. I can't remember. I don't know if the Chief

9 Superintendent was at the meeting, and that's why it was

10 addressed to him. He may have been.

11 Q. But picking up a point you made earlier, it is obvious,

12 I think, from your statement and, indeed, from the fact

13 that you produced the request for information going down

14 the chain, that this letter came to you. By this stage

15 you were very much the Rosemary Nelson specialist?

16 A. If it was addressed to the Chief Superintendent, it is

17 very likely he would have looked at it first.

18 Q. Absolutely.

19 A. And then it would --

20 Q. And passed it to you?

21 A. It is very likely he would have seen it.

22 Q. But I can take it, can I, that you can't recall any

23 conversation you had with him, the Chief Superintendent,

24 at this stage?

25 A. I can't remember any conversation on this piece of





1 correspondence specifically.

2 Q. If we look at the next stage, which is a memo from you,

3 RNI-101-197 (displayed), you say to the

4 Assistant Chief Constable South:

5 "Please see attached most recent correspondence from

6 the NIO concerning alleged death threats against

7 Rosemary Nelson.

8 "I am aware that the matter of death threats against

9 Mrs Nelson was referred to the Deputy Subdivisional

10 Commander Lurgan in May of last year."

11 So it looks, doesn't it, as though you have gone

12 back into the file, seen the memo from the

13 Superintendent in Complaints and Discipline and that's

14 where that comes from?

15 A. That would appear to be it, yes.

16 Q. Yes. However:

17 "However, I would appreciate your views/comment on

18 any further action that could be taken in this matter so

19 that I may respond to the further correspondence

20 appropriately."

21 Just looking at what you are saying, you don't in

22 this memo, do you, specifically suggest or request that

23 a threat assessment should be undertaken?

24 A. No, although I would expect that to have been down.

25 People receiving this correspondence in terms of threats





1 and compliance with the force order, I would expect that

2 the threat assessment or -- and the intelligence

3 assessment -- and there are two different issues --

4 would have been undertaken by the local police.

5 Q. In order to get a proper, detailed appreciation as to

6 whether an individual was under threat, you needed to

7 have a proper Special Branch threat assessment, didn't

8 you?

9 A. There would have been a Special Branch intelligence

10 assessment and then part of the risk assessment process

11 was that Security Branch would have taken that

12 information and actually done a security assessment at

13 the request of local police.

14 Q. We have heard various witnesses using different

15 terminology here. Can I take it that you agree that the

16 Security Branch did the risk assessment?

17 A. That's right.

18 Q. And the Special Branch did the threat assessment?

19 A. The intelligence -- yes, that's correct.

20 Q. But there were two distinct activities. So, as you say,

21 although you don't specifically mention it, as I

22 understand it, your expectation would have been that

23 given the reference to threats and, as you say, death

24 threats, the way it would be handled down from the

25 Assistant Chief Constable would be by obtaining what you





1 call an intelligence assessment?

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. Thank you. Now, going back briefly to the Simon Rogers

4 letter, RNI-101-196 (displayed) -- perhaps we can have

5 that on the screen at the same time as RNI-101-197

6 (displayed) -- the question arises whether you

7 considered asking a specific question of the

8 Assistant Chief Constable, "Look, what was done last

9 year and will you please consider what needs to be done

10 now, now we have been notified of this again, this time

11 by the NIO"?

12 A. Certainly that's not in my memo. Again, I think my

13 reference to the correspondence of the previous year, I

14 would expected him to have addressed or at least

15 reassured himself that that issue had been addressed.

16 Q. Yes. Can I just ask you in this context to pick up

17 a point you make in your own statement, paragraph 22,

18 page 387, RNI-841-387 (displayed), because here,

19 inconveniently at the very bottom of the page, do you

20 see, the last sentence is:

21 "However, if ..."

22 Do you see that? If we can read over the page,

23 please, RNI-841-388 (displayed):

24 "However, if a query in relation to whether or not

25 a person was at risk came into Command Secretariat, it





1 was passed on to E Department and to the appropriate

2 region."

3 We know that in the second case, in August, that is

4 what you did: you passed it both to the ACC South and to

5 the ACC who was responsible for E Department. In this

6 case, however, as far as we can tell from the record,

7 you did not?

8 A. No, it went to ACC South region who then passed it

9 across to his Special Branch people.

10 Q. Yes. But it didn't go to the E Department, the

11 headquarters part of Special Branch, did it?

12 A. No, that's correct.

13 Q. Given what you say here about what would have happened,

14 which is it went to the appropriate region and to

15 E Department, can you help us as to why you didn't do

16 that in this particular case?

17 A. I can't recall my exact thinking. Certainly when I

18 would have been making my statement, I would have been

19 referring to -- probably the August incident would have

20 been very much in my mind when it went to E Department

21 and to the appropriate region. I think the force order

22 required us to make sure it went to Special Branch. The

23 local division and subdivision had Special Branch with

24 them, and it was certainly apparent when I have come

25 back that Special Branch had dealt with it.





1 I think from memory -- and there has been many force

2 orders -- the special -- they are silent, I think, on

3 what element of Special Branch it goes to. It talks

4 about referring to local Special Branch. I don't think

5 the force talked about referring to Headquarters

6 Special Branch.

7 Q. Shall we just have a look at it, so you have got it in

8 front of you. It is RNI-101-001 (displayed) and when

9 I say that this was the one that was in force at this

10 particular moment, it was actually just about to go out

11 of force. But if we see there, the paragraph I showed

12 you before is the local Special Branch paragraph,

13 paragraph 1. Do you see that on the right-hand side?

14 Yes?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. So far as other parts are concerned, I should also show

17 you RNI-101-004 (displayed). There are various

18 categories, you remember, in the force order of what you

19 do in certain --

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Thank you. But 7 is "Other Persons", which I think

22 Rosemary Nelson would fall into, and it says:

23 "Local Special Branch concerned will inform the

24 Subdivisional Commander in whose area the subject

25 resides and works and the Subdivisional Commander will





1 take whatever action he considers necessary. The local

2 Special Branch will also inform Special Branch

3 headquarters."

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. So in other words, this contemplates that it is the

6 local people who then refer back to headquarters?

7 A. That's correct.

8 Q. Now, we know that can't have been an invariable

9 procedure because, as I said, in the August case you

10 took the initiative, if I can put it that way, yourself

11 and sent it to E Department?

12 A. Yes, and I can't recall why this one was done any

13 different, but in terms of the force order, it would

14 have had to go to local Special Branch.

15 Q. Yes. In your statement you deal with the various

16 documents that were generated as this request went down

17 the line and then up again?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. I just want to ask you some general questions about

20 that. As I understand it, you regarded your role in

21 Command Secretariat as being, as you say, a post box. So

22 it was your job to send out a request for information

23 and, when they came back into Command Secretariat, to

24 process them and send them on to whoever it was?

25 A. To respond to whoever had written to us.





1 Q. As I understand it, what you are telling us in here is

2 you didn't regard it as your job or, indeed, you didn't

3 regard it as appropriate for you to independently assess

4 the quality, quantity, sufficiency of what they were

5 saying?

6 A. If something was obviously incorrect or very apparent,

7 then of course we would have challenged. And there were

8 examples of where we challenged stuff.

9 Q. But absent that sort of very obvious case, you didn't

10 regard it as your job, as I understand it, to second

11 guess what had been done at regional level or elsewhere?

12 A. I think part of the difficulty we had in headquarters,

13 we were a very small team. We didn't have the

14 experience or the knowledge. We didn't have access to

15 the Special Branch records or the clearance to access

16 them. We wouldn't have had that knowledge or, indeed,

17 the local knowledge to actually second guess or -- we

18 had to rely on the senior people in the districts --

19 sorry, the divisions to reassure us that they had dealt

20 with whatever went out.

21 Q. So, so far as the material is concerned, you didn't have

22 your own access, if I can put it this way, to the

23 underlying intelligence which might have been

24 considered, acted upon by the local Special Branch?

25 A. Absolutely not.





1 Q. So when we look, for example, at the assessment itself,

2 RNI-101-211 (displayed), can I take it that you wouldn't

3 have regarded this as any part of your job to examine

4 it, audit it and evaluate this sort of assessment?

5 A. I wouldn't have had the additional information available

6 to allow me to do so, and that's why you relied on the

7 very senior, the most senior person in the region to

8 make sure what you were getting back was correct.

9 Q. And so given what we know of the correspondence -- and I

10 don't think we need to go through it -- which is that

11 this document -- there is another page to it, but I'm

12 not sure that matters for the moment -- was passed back

13 up the line with various people making comments upon it,

14 can I take it, therefore, that you received the

15 information and did not seek to question it? You didn't

16 raise points with the Assistant Chief Constable?

17 A. I have no recollection of raising any points on it.

18 Q. Nor in general would you have regarded it as appropriate

19 to do so?

20 A. Generally I would have -- I mean, I am sure I would have

21 relied on his judgment as to the action taken because he

22 would have had the briefings from the local

23 Special Branch, would have had access to them and would

24 have had access to what was going on locally. Certainly

25 in Command Secretariat we wouldn't.





1 Q. So he had a significant advantage over you in that

2 sense?

3 A. He had the resources and the information available to

4 him locally.

5 Q. Yes. Now, can I pick up an example of something that

6 might go the other way and show you one of the documents

7 in the chain -- another one -- RNI-101-218 (displayed).

8 This is the Deputy Subdivisional Commander sending

9 back up the chain the assessment that we looked at

10 a little earlier. Do you see?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And the paragraph I'm asking you to look at, please, is

13 the third paragraph, and it says:

14 "The second paragraph of the correspondence from the

15 Northern Ireland Office ..."

16 That is the letter you forwarded?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. "... refers to 'her complaints about RUC threats',

19 et cetera. I can confirm that no such complaints have

20 been made to police at Lurgan, but perhaps this is

21 a reference to comments she made to the press."

22 Of course when you saw that memorandum, you

23 realised, presumably, that this is something that you

24 did know about; he didn't, but you did?

25 A. I knew in terms of -- sorry, your question?





1 Q. He said that he didn't know anything about complaints

2 about RUC threats and we have already seen --

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. -- a huge amount of material which you knew about which,

5 in this case, he did not?

6 A. I think the point he is making here is that the

7 complaints were not made at Lurgan.

8 Q. Precisely.

9 A. I don't know that he is saying -- and I would find it

10 surprising if he was saying that he didn't know about

11 complaints.

12 Q. Indeed. And certainly in a sense what lay behind what

13 he was saying doesn't much matter for us at the moment.

14 The question is that you knew, didn't you, that

15 there had been a whole range of complaints and concerns

16 expressed which had all passed across your desk, as we

17 have just been seeing?

18 A. That's correct, there were complaints.

19 Q. You also see there a reference, if we can have the

20 paragraph beginning "as a result ..." please, enlarged:

21 "As a result of the Northern Ireland Office's

22 concerns passed on in May and again in February, police

23 personnel in Lurgan have been briefed as set out at

24 Appendix B".

25 Do you see that?





1 A. Yes, I do.

2 Q. And, again, just to remind you, if we can have on the

3 left-hand side of the screen, please, RNI-101-213

4 (displayed). This is Appendix B.

5 In terms of understanding what had been done at

6 local level in relation to Rosemary Nelson's security,

7 this was the first you had in concrete, written terms

8 coming back to you in Command Secretariat, wasn't it?

9 A. If this was in the papers, it will have come back. I

10 can't remember actually seeing it directly, but I'm sure

11 if it is this, we would have seen it.

12 Q. That raises the question of whether you in fact received

13 all this material coming up the line. It looks, from

14 the file at any rate, as though you did, not least

15 because if you look at the memoranda, each one refers

16 back, as it were, to the one before?

17 A. Certainly the chain --

18 Q. Yes, and that was a pretty usual way of communicating,

19 wasn't it, that when you at Command Secretariat sent out

20 a request, it would be passed on by the various memos

21 down the line and then it would come up with various

22 memos back up to you?

23 A. Although occasionally, and depending what it was, not

24 all the pieces of correspondence that was dealt with

25 locally would have come up. Certainly we wouldn't have





1 got all the internal Special Branch stuff. We wouldn't

2 have seen it coming back. We would have got probably

3 a final summary of it.

4 Q. But in this case are you pretty clear in your mind that

5 you would have seen, for example, the memo we have on

6 the screen at RNI-101-218 (displayed) and Appendix B

7 which it refers to at RNI-101-213 (displayed)?

8 A. I don't remember seeing this, but that's not -- I'm

9 not -- just not aware of whether I saw it or not. I

10 can't recall seeing it, but it was on the file.

11 I should have seen it.

12 Q. Yes. Can we look at the last stage of the chain, and

13 that's RNI-101-217 (displayed), and we have another

14 version of it at RNI-101-206. I would like them both on

15 the screen, please. So if we could have RNI-101-206 on

16 the left (displayed).

17 Here on the left you see on 17 March, the

18 Assistant Chief Constable for the South Region is

19 responding to the Superintendent:

20 "The background to this issue is comprehensively

21 outlined in the attached documentation from Divisional

22 Commander J."

23 That was one the many memos in the collection:

24 "No threats have been received in respect of

25 Mrs Nelson, but because of her high profile attention is





1 being paid to her home and business."

2 Now, at the right-hand side the same document

3 appears but this time with what I think is probably

4 a Post-It. Is that right?

5 A. That's correct.

6 Q. And that's the handwriting, isn't it, of the Chief

7 Superintendent?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. And can you help us as to how that question, "need to

10 offer her" I think that probably is "a crime prevention

11 order", how that came into being?

12 A. I think -- this was the correspondence coming back in

13 response to the NIO request?

14 Q. Yes.

15 A. And I was obviously aware within that that, I think it

16 was, Simon Rogers had raised the issue about advice.

17 Q. Yes.

18 A. And even though the correspondence coming back to me was

19 saying there were no threats, I can recall very clearly

20 asking the Chief Superintendent about offering

21 Mrs Nelson crime prevention advice, which was, obviously

22 a requirement of the force order. So that was -- the

23 Chief Superintendent frequently would have used

24 a Post-It if I was talking to him, and he would have

25 written a note. In this case, because he didn't respond





1 immediately, and I got the clear impression that he was

2 going to talk to the Chief Constable.

3 Q. Crime prevention advice, as I understand it, that's

4 where the local police pay a visit or talk to somebody

5 in simple terms about what they might be able to do to

6 protect themselves from crime and, indeed, in this case

7 presumably for their security?

8 A. Yes, the local crime prevention officer was an important

9 part of the force order in terms of dealing with

10 threats.

11 Q. Absolutely.

12 A. They would have had -- and I wasn't a crime prevention

13 officer, but they would have had training on the

14 security aspects and would have been in a position to

15 offer people advice about personal security, forming of

16 habits and all those sort of things to help reduce any

17 risk. And that's what my expectation was here should we

18 offer Mrs Nelson crime prevention advice. At any time

19 just with normal crime, it was in relation to the

20 security aspects.

21 Q. Absolutely, I understand. But what's an order in those

22 circumstances? What's a crime prevention order?

23 A. I think that's a mistake. I think it should be crime

24 prevention officer.

25 Q. Thank you. Because as you have just pointed out, the





1 specific question that the NIO had raised is what have

2 you done on the crime prevention front? What advice

3 have you given? And in all of the memos that had come

4 back up to you, although you had seen that document,

5 Appendix B, which effectively was saying keep an eye on

6 her, there wasn't anything, was there, that said, "Yes,

7 we have given it," or "No, we haven't for these

8 reasons"? It was silent to the question of crime

9 prevention?

10 A. That's correct.

11 Q. And that is presumably why, when you were considering

12 what response to produce to the NIO, the conversation

13 that you have just helpfully told us about took place

14 between you and the Chief Superintendent?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. Now, it looks as though, from your statement,

17 paragraph 24, at RNI-841-388 (displayed) at the bottom

18 of the page, you say that you suggested:

19 "... that we should offer crime prevention advice to

20 her ..."

21 That is Rosemary Nelson obviously:

22 "... on two occasions."

23 But that suggestion had not been taken up. Do you

24 see that?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. Was this one of them?

2 A. This was one of them.

3 Q. Was the other on the next occasion in August 1998?

4 A. I can't remember. What -- I find it strange that there

5 is no note to the effect that it was asked, but I can't

6 remember. Certainly it was very clear in my mind that

7 on two separate occasions I had asked should we offer

8 crime prevention advice.

9 Q. Whenever the second one was, do you think this was the

10 first one?

11 A. This was probably the first one.

12 Q. Yes. When you say the suggestion had not been taken up,

13 can I take it in this particular case that when you got

14 your response from the Assistant Chief Constable on the

15 17th, a decision was made in a conversation between you

16 and the Chief Superintendent that the question would

17 have to be put to the Chief Constable himself?

18 A. I can't remember the full conversation, but certainly I

19 didn't get an immediate response, and my clear

20 impression from that was that the Chief Superintendent

21 was going to discuss it with the Chief Constable.

22 Q. Yes. So what was it about this particular case that

23 made it necessary for the question to be raised with the

24 head of the RUC?

25 A. I can't recall the Chief Superintendent giving me any





1 explanation as to why he wanted to refer it to the

2 Chief. It may have been because a lot of the -- most of

3 the threats were alleged to have been coming from police

4 officers. And here I was asking should we offer -- I

5 was actually asking can we offer Mrs Nelson crime

6 prevention advice, which would have been carried out by

7 an RUC officer.

8 Q. Indeed.

9 A. And Mrs Nelson and others on her behalf had raised

10 concerns about how the RUC had behaved. So it didn't

11 surprise me whenever the Chief Superintendent wanted to

12 discuss it with the Chief.

13 Q. No. Presumably that was part of it, that the

14 allegations were that the threats themselves were

15 emanating from police officers, which presumably was

16 rather unusual in the case of a lawyer or, indeed, at

17 all?

18 A. Certainly I do not have any recollection of other cases,

19 having dealt with, at that time, the

20 Command Secretariat.

21 Q. And secondly, of course, by this stage, as we have seen,

22 it was political issue and a very high profile one?

23 A. In terms of -- yes, the threats were certainly high

24 profile.

25 Q. Yes. So in that sense you can't have been surprised,





1 presumably, when the Chief Superintendent said,

2 "Actually, this is something I really need to speak to

3 the boss about"?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Sir, would that be a convenient moment?

6 THE CHAIRMAN: Certainly. Four minutes to two we will

7 adjourn until. I have just got to deal with the

8 procedure.

9 Mr (name redacted), before the witness leaves, would you

10 please confirm that all the cameras have been switched

11 off?

12 MR (NAME REDACTED): They are, sir.

13 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. Please escort the witness out.

14 (12.56 pm)

15 (The short adjournment)

16 (1.56 pm)

17 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Currans, may we go through the checklist?

18 Is the public area screen fully if place, locked and

19 the key secured?

20 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

21 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the fire doors on either side of the

22 screen closed?

23 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

24 THE CHAIRMAN: The technical support screens in place and

25 securely fastened?





1 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

2 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than Inquiry personnel and

3 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

4 of this chamber?

5 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

6 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr (name redacted), can you confirm, please, that

7 the two witness cameras have been switched off and

8 shrouded?

9 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

10 THE CHAIRMAN: All the other cameras been switched off?

11 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

12 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

13 Bring the witness in, please.

14 The cameras on the Panel, the Inquiry personnel and

15 Full Participants' legal representatives may now be

16 switched back on.

17 Yes, Mr Phillips?

18 MR PHILLIPS: We were discussing before lunch the question

19 that you had raised on this first occasion and later on

20 some other occasion -- you are not sure when -- that

21 crime prevention advice should be offered/given to

22 Rosemary Nelson.

23 Can I ask you, please, to look at the RNI-101-206

24 (displayed) memo from the Assistant Chief Constable that

25 we were both looking at? Do you remember we looked at





1 the version with the Post-It on it?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Can I take it from what you were saying earlier that the

4 conversation you had with P157, the Chief

5 Superintendent, about that issue took place after you

6 had received the report back from the

7 Assistant Chief Constable in the South Region?

8 A. It would have, because the Post-It was on that memo,

9 yes.

10 Q. Exactly. Now, what the Assistant Chief Constable was

11 telling you in the second paragraph was that no threats

12 had been received. Do you see that?

13 A. That's correct.

14 Q. So I can take it, can I, that in your view the fact that

15 you were getting that report from the South Region

16 wasn't any reason not to consider this question of crime

17 prevention?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. Thank you. Now, you then told us about how the matter

20 was taken to the Chief Constable, and we see your note

21 at the bottom of the page in your handwriting:

22 "Discussed with CC on 1 April 1998."

23 Then Chief Superintendent P157:

24 "Nothing further can be done by police at this

25 time."





1 Again, can I take it, please, that that was your

2 note of what was reported back to you by the Chief

3 Superintendent?

4 A. That would have been. Certainly I did not have this

5 conversation with the Chief.

6 Q. And, again, can I take it, please, that the decision

7 here, "nothing further can be done by police at this

8 time", was the Chief Constable's decision?

9 A. I have to assume so. If it was discussed with the

10 Chief. But, again, I can't answer exactly.

11 Q. Can you remember anything of the report given back to

12 you by P157 of this conversation with the

13 Chief Constable?

14 A. That's probably -- the conversation was probably quite

15 brief, as reflected in the note. If there had been

16 anything significant else said, I would have noted it.

17 Q. Now, if we keep that on the screen, please, on the left

18 and put up on the right RNI-841-389 (displayed), which

19 is part of the your statement, paragraph 25, you say

20 there:

21 "I believe it was felt that it was inappropriate to

22 make an offer of crime prevention advice as the advice

23 would be given by local officers, and Rosemary Nelson

24 had complained about threatening behaviour by local

25 officers."





1 Do you see that?

2 A. I do.

3 Q. That's not something noted by you at the time, is it?

4 A. No, and I think this is the point I made earlier on in

5 relation to why the matter may have been referred to the

6 Chief Constable. It was the first point. I think what

7 I was saying here was in response probably to a question

8 asked in my opinion in making the statement.

9 Q. Yes, but it is not a reason that was given to you by

10 P157 himself, as far as you can --

11 A. Not that I can recall.

12 Q. Now, we have heard evidence on this topic from

13 Mr McMullen who was the Deputy Subdivisional Commander

14 whose memo we saw a little earlier coming up the chain.

15 And he put forward another reason -- it was an

16 expression of his view -- that the question of crime

17 prevention advice wasn't appropriate, as far as he was

18 concerned because: one, there wasn't any evidence of

19 actual threat; and two, in those circumstances, because

20 to send somebody out might itself cause, as he put it, I

21 think, great distress to the recipient.

22 Now, was that something that was being discussed at

23 the time?

24 A. In terms of the -- greater distress?

25 Q. Yes.





1 A. I certainly don't recall that. I think -- really I

2 think what -- why I had asked the question was we had

3 all this correspondence, people had expressed concern

4 and it really was, "Is there anything else we can do

5 here" and that was -- I know I recognised that the

6 reports coming back were saying that there was no threat

7 or the intelligence had said that there was no threat.

8 Q. But in your view clearly, as you told me a little

9 earlier, that wasn't a bar to considering whether advice

10 of that kind might not still be given?

11 A. No, that's why I posed the question.

12 Q. Exactly. Can you remember, did you know at this time

13 that an attempt had been made to give Rosemary Nelson

14 crime prevention advice in 1993 when a threatening call

15 had been received at her office, a threat in that case

16 being against a third party?

17 A. I have no recollection whatsoever. It is unlikely.

18 Q. Thank you. And before we move on to look at the

19 response that you did give, can I ask you this final

20 question: at this point, so end

21 of March/beginning April 1998, had you known of an

22 occasion since you had started in Command Secretariat

23 when the Chief Constable had himself intervened in this

24 way in dealing with a threat assessment?

25 A. I think from memory -- again, it was probably the first





1 time it had happened. I have no recollection of

2 anything of that nature being referred to the Chief

3 prior to this.

4 Q. Thank you. Now, let's look at your response together,

5 please. It is at RNI-106-199 (displayed), I think.

6 Yes, it is.

7 The first thing: the date. It looks as though you

8 put the draft together and then waited a little before

9 sending it eventually on 1 April?

10 A. It could be that, whatever date -- I mean, it had been

11 typed on a date and whenever it would have come to me

12 for signature, which is a point I raise later on in my

13 statement, if there was a delay between the date on the

14 typed version and when it was actually going out, my

15 reaction would have been, obviously, "change it".

16 Q. Thank you. It wasn't a delay while matters were

17 discussed with the Chief Constable?

18 A. I don't -- I have no recollection of it.

19 Q. In terms of the drafting of the letter, was it all your

20 own work or did you have input or approval from other

21 offices?

22 A. Unless there is something on the file to suggest that

23 I discussed it with somebody, I can't -- I couldn't

24 confirm. It may have been my own work.

25 Q. Let's trace it back. We know you had a report back from





1 the Chief Constable's meeting with P157, and no further

2 action can be taken by police at this time, or words to

3 that effect.

4 Did he then say, "Right, now we need a letter to go

5 back to Mr Rogers at the NIO"?

6 A. I don't think the Chief would have gone into that sort

7 of detail. I think that would have been

8 Command Secretariat's role, to provide a response.

9 Q. Sorry, that was my fault. Did P157 say, "Now it is over

10 to you to produce the letter to the NIO"?

11 A. I can't recall whether or not he had asked. I would

12 suspect it was probably myself who sent the response.

13 Q. Now, if we put on the screen RNI-101-206 on the

14 right-hand side, please (displayed), there the very

15 short memorandum from the ACC South was, in the second

16 paragraph:

17 "No threats have been received in respect of

18 Mrs Nelson. But because of her high profile attention

19 is being paid to her home and business."

20 And it may well be that that referred to Appendix B,

21 do you remember, that we saw before?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. So far as the message you sent out is concerned, you

24 repeated that phrase, didn't you, "no threats", in

25 respect of Mrs Nelson?





1 A. That's correct. The letter is taken from what the ACC

2 had provided.

3 Q. Absolutely. And so far as the next paragraph is

4 concerned:

5 "If the Lawyers Alliance has evidence ..."

6 That came from another memorandum in the collection,

7 I think, didn't it? We can see that on the right-hand

8 side of the screen, please, RNI-101-210 (displayed).

9 Because there at the end of the Divisional Commander's

10 memo -- do you see?

11 A. Yes, I see.

12 Q. What you have done is effectively put in that paragraph

13 in a slightly shortened form, by the look of it?

14 A. Yes. I think what I was saying there was to allow this

15 to be properly assessed, if there is any further

16 information, we need it.

17 Q. Just going back to RNI-101-206 on the right-hand side of

18 the screen, please -- that is the ACC South's memorandum

19 (displayed), thank you. You will remember that one of

20 the points that Mr Rogers raised with you is what was

21 being done or will you give consideration to doing

22 something on the ground, to doing something locally.

23 And the fact is that in your letter to the left, there

24 is no reference to that at all, is there?

25 A. No.





1 Q. You didn't say that the question of crime prevention

2 advice had been considered but rejected?

3 A. No, I just referred to the aspect of the no threats.

4 That's correct.

5 Q. Yes. You didn't even say what the ACC had told you:

6 that because of her high profile, attention is being

7 paid to her home and business?

8 A. Not in this letter, no.

9 Q. Can you now help us with this: why do you think it was

10 that you kept it so very short and didn't deal with the

11 very issue that you yourself had raised with P157 and

12 which had been discussed by him and the Chief Constable?

13 A. I think the first aspect was to report back that we had

14 no threats, which was a key part of it. And really the

15 second part of that letter was really a form of appeal

16 almost through the NIO to see if there was any other

17 information which could be provided to police.

18 I can't comment on why there is no reference to the

19 added information. It may have been because we had

20 already reported that there were no threats, but I can't

21 be sure at this stage.

22 Q. Because keeping it very, very simple, it left Mr Rogers

23 with a part of his letter which was completely

24 unanswered, didn't it?

25 A. I think -- and I can't remember if the NIO come back and





1 asked anything else. It normally would have been the

2 case probably, if there was no threat, that crime

3 prevention advice wouldn't have been offered. But in

4 this case, I went ahead and took it upon myself to ask

5 the question.

6 Q. Yes. You say you can't remember whether the NIO came

7 back about it. You've probably gathered by now that

8 Mrs Collins at the NIO, the Head of the Police Division,

9 has said that she did telephone Command Secretariat and

10 talk about this letter. Can I take it, therefore, that

11 you don't recall speaking to her about it?

12 A. It would have been very unusual in my time at

13 Command Secretariat for Mrs Collins to speak to me. She

14 normally spoke direct to the Chief or to the Chief

15 Superintendent. In fact, I think any dealings I had

16 with Mrs Collins direct would have been maybe after she

17 left Police Division and was doing other research roles.

18 Q. Yes.

19 A. I don't remember any contact directly in

20 Command Secretariat.

21 Q. But I think you are saying, therefore, are you, that

22 contact from her is much more likely to have been with

23 either the Chief Superintendent or with the

24 Chief Constable himself?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. Yes. Thank you. Do you have any recollection of

2 hearing about or hearing a discussion, or having

3 a discussion with P157 about the NIO following up on

4 this letter?

5 A. No, I don't.

6 Q. Thank you. At the same time as this was being dealt

7 with, in other words, the end of March 1998, you had

8 some dealing, I think, didn't you, with the business of

9 the draft report prepared by the Special Rapporteur,

10 Mr Cumaraswamy?

11 A. I think I had dealings in relation to the press release.

12 Q. Yes.

13 A. I mean, I wasn't at a meeting or I had no hand in the

14 actual preparation or the response to it.

15 Q. Thank you. Just to get all this clear, so far as the

16 draft report is concerned, there seems to have been,

17 broadly speaking, two stages: a stage in February when

18 the draft was first received, considered and the issue

19 of the alleged comment by the Chief Constable was

20 raised. As I understand it from your statement you had

21 no involvement in that at all?

22 A. Absolutely.

23 Q. Thank you. So far as what you have just talked about is

24 concerned, you did have some involvement, as I

25 understand it, in dealing with the press release which





1 had been sent out by mistake?

2 A. That was certainly reported back to me.

3 Q. Yes. And in the context of that, can we look, please,

4 at RNI-101-246 (displayed) in the bundle. I'm showing

5 you this in order to remind you that what happened here

6 was that the same NGO we looked at earlier, British

7 Irish Rights Watch, learned what had happened, namely

8 that the alleged remarks had been said to have been made

9 by the Rapporteur and, of course, by this stage they had

10 been amended in the report, hadn't they, changes had

11 been made to the text?

12 A. Certainly in some of the correspondence I have seen,

13 that's correct.

14 Q. Now, when you came to deal -- we can see the text of

15 that at RNI-101-247 (displayed), and there you see the

16 relevant paragraph is the third paragraph on this page.

17 Do you see?

18 A. I do see, yes.

19 Q. Now, so far as your involvement is concerned, it looks

20 as though you were responsible for trying to find out

21 how it had happened that the press release had been

22 issued. Do you remember that?

23 A. Certainly I had sent -- well, according to the papers I

24 had sent a query to the press office and got a response

25 back.





1 Q. Yes, because unfortunately, the press release revealed

2 the original alleged remarks, didn't it, and issued

3 a denial in relation to it?

4 A. I think that was the issue.

5 Q. We can see your involvement at RNI-101-263 (displayed)

6 and it fell to you, as you have explained, to contact

7 the press office and then to report back to

8 Simon Rogers. Do you see the last paragraph:

9 "Spoke to Simon Rogers by telephone and informed him

10 statement had been released in error"?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. But this, so far as you were concerned, then, was, as it

13 were, yet another episode in which the question of

14 Rosemary Nelson -- because, of course, she was bound up

15 with the text of the draft report -- came across your

16 desk in yet another context?

17 A. That's correct.

18 Q. Thank you. So far as that is concerned -- just before

19 we turn to the last threat assessment, August 1998 --

20 did you have any involvement in the issue of the ICPC's

21 decision to issue a certificate of satisfaction or

22 dissatisfaction in June 1998?

23 A. I had no role in the complaints and discipline

24 investigation at all.

25 Q. Thank you. Let's turn then to the August threat





1 assessment and, again, I would like to start, if I may,

2 by using a chart rather than taking you through the

3 documents. So can we have the August 1998 threat

4 assessment chart, please (displayed)? Right.

5 This shows that, if you remember what the previous

6 chart looked like, this was a good deal more

7 complicated. And just by way of reminder, the first

8 point is that there were various sources for the

9 material which came in to the NIO and then from them to

10 Command Secretariat.

11 So you see at the top "CAJ", but then on the

12 right-hand side, do you see, the Anglo-Irish

13 Secretariat?

14 A. I do.

15 Q. Thank you. Then down from the NIO to Police Division to

16 Command Secretariat, and there we see your cipher?

17 A. That's correct.

18 Q. There is a side arrow taking in your boss, P157, and the

19 Chief Constable?

20 A. That's correct, yes.

21 Q. There is a side arrow taking in KPPS, but I think that's

22 not something you dealt with at all, and then from your

23 part of the diagram, we see in this case that there are

24 two chains of communication?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. Because in this case, as I suggested to you earlier, you

2 sought input not only from ACC South but from the Head

3 of Special Branch?

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. Thank you. We touched on this earlier, but before we

6 leave this chart, can I just ask you whether now you

7 have been back through the material, you have no doubt

8 re-read your statement, can I ask you, please, why it

9 was in this case but not the previous one that you sent

10 it both to the South Region but also to E Department?

11 A. In this one here -- this is the 6 August correspondence?

12 Q. Absolutely, the leaflet --

13 A. The leaflet, and it may have been, because there was

14 a leaflet attached here, we had something more specific,

15 and that may have been my thinking in terms of sending

16 it to both. But it didn't get away from the fact that

17 once it went to South Region, in terms of any threat

18 assessment and local involvement of Special Branch, that

19 would have fallen within their remit.

20 Q. As we see did, in fact, happen if you look at the bottom

21 box on the right-hand side.

22 So in a very simplistic way, the E Department chain

23 on the left-hand side is, if I can put it that way,

24 a headquarters chain?

25 A. That's correct.





1 Q. And the one on the right is a local chain, which

2 eventually gets down to local Special Branch level?

3 A. That's correct.

4 Q. Thank you. Now, starting with the first document that

5 came in, which is from the NIO, again, Mr Rogers,

6 6 August, as you have mentioned, RNI-101-327

7 (displayed), we see that this letter is addressed to you

8 and directs your attention to a fax attached, which is

9 of appalling quality, of a leaflet, which is apparently

10 being distributed in Portadown.

11 Just pausing there, this, of course, was a month or

12 so after the marching, the Drumcree event, if I can put

13 it that way, and confrontation in July 1998. Did you

14 know at the time you received this, do you think, that

15 Rosemary Nelson was herself involved in the

16 Garvaghy Road Residents Coalition?

17 A. I would have been aware that she had represented the

18 Garvaghy Road.

19 Q. Yes. And we can see the leaflet on the next page at

20 RNI-101-328 (displayed) in our files. It is also, I am

21 afraid, not very clear. In your statement at

22 paragraph 37 -- I think it is 37 -- you describe it

23 as -- you say:

24 "When I read the leaflet, I thought it sounded

25 intimidatory."





1 Perhaps we could enlarge the text of the leaflet to

2 try and help you. But what aspects of the leaflet

3 struck you as intimidatory?

4 A. I think there was -- just the tone of it suggested to me

5 that this leaflet was put out in a way that was --

6 designed to instil some sort of fear in the person

7 receiving it.

8 Q. Did you look, for example, at the description of

9 Rosemary Nelson -- obviously I'm focusing on her -- as

10 a former bomber, and the fact that she was described as

11 being a member of the motley crew of all the various

12 other individuals, including some referred to at the top

13 in the first line there as, "murdering scum"? Did that

14 strike you as being threatening or intimidatory?

15 A. Well, it certainly was linking Mrs Nelson to the

16 activities of a terrorist group. So certainly I would

17 expect it to have frightened the person on the receiving

18 end of it.

19 Q. Yes. So there were a number of aspects of the leaflet,

20 weren't there, in addition to the fact that her work

21 address and telephone number were given, which made for

22 that sense of intimidation?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. Thank you. Now, you had heard also, or gathered, that

25 it had been distributed in Portadown where, of course,





1 the Drumcree protests took place. As I understand it,

2 what you then did with this leaflet was to send it on to

3 both the relevant assistant chief constables?

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. And we can see that at RNI-101-329 (displayed), where

6 you say:

7 "Please see attached copy leaflet of very poor

8 quality which has been passed to me by the

9 Northern Ireland Office. I would advise the leaflet is

10 being distributed in Portadown and was passed to the NIO

11 from Rosemary Nelson via a third party."

12 Then he set out a quotation from their letter. Do

13 you see that?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. "I would appreciate whatever information you can provide

16 on this matter and an assessment of whether or not you

17 consider those named to be subject of any threat."

18 So taking some points about this in turn, it looks

19 as though you didn't forward to the

20 assistant chief constables the NIO letter itself. Is

21 that correct?

22 A. It would appear -- because I would have referred to it.

23 Q. Exactly. But instead you passed on the various pieces

24 of information that they had given you and included

25 a quotation from the letter?





1 A. That's correct.

2 Q. If we keep that document on the left-hand side, please,

3 and put RNI-101-327 on the right; can we have them both

4 on the screen at once, please, RNI-101-327 and

5 RNI-101-329 (displayed)? Thank you.

6 So we see where the quotation comes from; it comes

7 from the second paragraph, doesn't it?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. And if you would look at the third paragraph on the

10 right, this is not already happened, which in a sense is

11 harking back to the question that was raised

12 in February; in other words, if you haven't already

13 acted on it, you know, can you let me know what you are

14 doing.

15 So that's the first thing:

16 "Could steps please be taken to assess the

17 background to the leaflet and any threat or increased

18 threat to the security of the individuals mentioned

19 in it.

20 "I presume that if there is a threat to the safety

21 of the individuals, then the police will talk to them

22 about this. In doing so, and while we could not

23 pre-judge the outcome, Mrs Nelson in particular could be

24 informed that if she needs financial assistance and any

25 required security measures, then the NIO does run a





1 limited scheme and she could apply to this. Obviously

2 any application would be treated on its merits."

3 So looking at this, presumably you realised that you

4 were in familiar territory, i.e. the same territory that

5 you had been in in the February/March/April

6 correspondence, where they were asking you what you were

7 going to do about the safety of individuals. And of the

8 individuals referred to in the leaflet, Rosemary Nelson

9 was being highlighted, wasn't she?

10 A. She was.

11 Q. And given special treatment in the letter?

12 A. Well, certainly -- I'm not sure -- she was highlighted

13 certainly in the NIO letter, but in terms of the

14 response or the action that I sent to the two ACCs,

15 I referred to all those named.

16 Q. Absolutely. Yes. But what you didn't do was to pass on

17 the specific suggestion in relation to Rosemary Nelson,

18 did you?

19 A. Well, what I read from Simon Rogers' letter is that

20 if -- he was asking us to assess the background, which

21 was my request. And what he went on to say is:

22 "I presume that if there is a threat to the safety

23 of the individuals ..."

24 And that would obviously be based on whether or not

25 we had anything to indicate if there was a threat. And





1 then he went on to talk about:

2 "The police will talk to them."

3 And that she could be informed of the financial

4 assistance. But that would have been based, I believe,

5 on whether or not there was a threat.

6 Q. Now, when we looked at the earlier example, do you

7 remember, you said, well, they were telling me there was

8 no threat, but I nevertheless thought it appropriate to

9 raise the question of crime prevention advice. Didn't

10 you read this in very much the same way? Whether or not

11 the answer came back threat or not, you might want to

12 consider -- and they are giving you a pretty firm steer

13 in that, aren't they?

14 A. I can't remember if this was the second time that

15 I actually asked about the crime prevention advice

16 because I haven't got a note of it. Obviously those are

17 not on the file.

18 Q. Clearly the problem with you not forwarding the NIO

19 letter itself was that this paragraph, this aspect of

20 what Simon Rogers was saying, didn't work its way down

21 to South Region or, indeed, to E Department?

22 A. I think the reason probably -- and, again, the point

23 I made earlier on -- why this memo wasn't sent on was

24 probably the reference to the Irish side and not wishing

25 to divulge that which sometimes could create bigger





1 difficulties.

2 Q. That presumably made it incumbent upon you to make sure

3 that the minutes got across even if it wasn't possible

4 for that reason to send the actual correspondence?

5 A. Certainly in terms of the response that come back, had

6 that response have come back and suggested some sort of

7 threat, then certainly I would have expected further

8 action to be taken.

9 Q. So you thought that was something that you would then

10 make decisions about?

11 A. I would expect the local subdivision to have done that

12 themselves. However, if there was a suggestion of

13 a threat and it hadn't been dealt with, if somebody was

14 coming back and saying, "We have something here to

15 support the threat aspect", then of course we would have

16 to say whether or not further action was needed.

17 Q. Now, of course, all the talking on the ground, when it

18 says "police will talk it to them about this," in doing

19 so, that would have to be done at local level in any

20 event, wouldn't it?

21 A. It would.

22 Q. Yes. Beginning the saga in relation to the documents

23 here, I'm going to ask you a number of questions which

24 are of particular concern to some of the Full

25 Participants in relation to receipt of documents,





1 et cetera, and I'm all too conscious of the fact that

2 you dealt with it in your statement and, indeed, it was

3 the focus of attention on behalf of the Police Ombudsman

4 at an earlier stage, and before that, considerably

5 before that, you were interviewed as part of

6 Superintendent Short's investigation of the same point?

7 A. Certainly Superintendent Short spoke to me at one stage,

8 yes.

9 Q. Thank you. You begin to deal with this at paragraph 38

10 and that's at 393. RNI-841-393, paragraph 38 of the

11 statement (displayed). Thank you.

12 At the bottom of the page, you say prior to receipt

13 of a response from the two places you had sent the

14 memorandum, you were forwarded a further fax from the

15 NIO. And you say that you were on annual leave when it

16 arrived and you didn't get back until 1 September.

17 Now, if we just look at that document, please, which

18 is RNI-101-340.500 (displayed) -- there is it is --

19 that's the fax cover sheet. It was from another civil

20 servant addressed to you, from Lesley Foster, dated

21 26 August. Message:

22 "Grateful for a response as soon as possible. I am

23 afraid with annual leave this has sat around for a few

24 days."

25 A great deal of attention has been paid over many





1 years to the fax headers of documents like this, as I am

2 sure you are only too well aware, and this one is very

3 difficult to make out, but it looks as though it gives

4 the same date, 26 August, Police Division to

5 Command Secretariat, number 956, P001 of 002. I think

6 that is 1 of 2, isn't it, by the look of it?

7 A. That's correct.

8 Q. If we then look at the next page, please; that's

9 RNI-101-340.501 (displayed). Here is 002/002, top

10 right-hand corner, and it is Lesley Foster's actual

11 letter addressed to you. Minister's case from CAJ:

12 "We received a further letter from the Committee On

13 the Administration of Justice concerning

14 Rosemary Nelson. In particular the letter expresses

15 concern about her safety in the light of a pamphlet

16 relating to Breandan Mac Cionnaith, which refers to

17 Rosemary Nelson, and a threatening note which was posted

18 to Rosemary Nelson, copies attached.

19 "Mr Rogers wrote to you on 6 August concerning

20 pamphlet and I would be grateful for advice as to what

21 action has been taken."

22 Now, taking the matter in stages, then, by the time

23 you returned from your holiday on 1 September, it looks

24 as though this fax and the letter with it would already

25 have been received in Command Secretariat?





1 A. That's correct.

2 Q. Thank you. At the same time, I think it is right to say

3 that you would have seen on your return the responses

4 from the two departments that you had sent out questions

5 to at an earlier stage in August. And we can see the

6 first at RNI-101-334, I think (displayed). That is from

7 the South Region. You see the actual assessment is very

8 short: three paragraphs at the bottom of the page. Do

9 you see that?

10 A. Yes, I do.

11 Q. And I think I'm right in saying that the E Department

12 report, the substance of it, came back up the chain to

13 you. We can see that at RNI-102-084 (displayed). Again

14 I'm looking at the substance rather than all the memos

15 that brought it back to Command Secretariat. But this

16 from E Department, E3A:

17 "With reference to the attached papers, this office

18 holds no current intelligence to indicate that

19 a specific threat exists to Rosemary Nelson from

20 paramilitaries. Local Special Branch in Portadown in

21 Lurgan are of the opinion that the leaflet was

22 circulated by Loyalist elements to heighten tension

23 during the Drumcree period ..."

24 Picking up the point that you and I discussed

25 earlier:





1 "Research has shown that the address and telephone

2 number given to the leaflet relates to Rosemary Nelson's

3 offices at 8a William Street, Lurgan. This information

4 is listed in the Yellow Pages and is there readily

5 accessible to anyone wishing to obtain the same."

6 So it looks as though, when you returned, therefore,

7 that the substance of the reporting up the chain would

8 have been available to you. And we see what you say in

9 your statement as to how you dealt with it in

10 paragraph 48 at RNI-841-397 (displayed), because there

11 you say:

12 "On 1 September, I drafted a note setting out my

13 response to the NIO."

14 And you give a reference there. We will look at

15 that in a minute:

16 "Whenever I did receive information from various

17 chief constables, I would usually simply lift paragraphs

18 from their report and put it into the draft response."

19 That is what you told me a little while ago:

20 "It was the people out in the divisions with the

21 knowledge, and it was not for me to put any sort of

22 interpretation on what they'd said. This is exactly

23 what I did on this occasion."

24 What I would like now to do is to put RNI-106-314 on

25 the right-hand side of the screen, please, (displayed)





1 and that, I think, is what you describe on the left as

2 being the note setting out your response, isn't it?

3 A. Yes, probably the note -- or letter. Probably note is

4 a wrong word.

5 Q. Thank you. And it records that you are dealing both

6 with the Simon Rogers letter, which you had received and

7 actioned, and also with the fax we looked at which had

8 come in in your absence on holiday?

9 A. That's correct.

10 Q. Thank you. So far as this letter is concerned, you make

11 it clear in this example that P157 was handed the draft

12 by you; in other words, this was something that you

13 weren't just going to send out, that you showed to your

14 superior officer?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. Was that because of the earlier involvement of the

17 Chief Constable?

18 A. It could have been, but it also may have been because

19 here -- the point I made earlier on about why it was

20 sent to E Department.

21 Q. Yes.

22 A. We had a leaflet referring to Mrs Nelson and others.

23 Q. So you think that of itself made it important to get it

24 cleared in draft?

25 A. That may have been in my thinking. I was also obviously





1 aware that the Chief did from time to time talk to

2 people and I was trying to keep him informed as to what

3 we were getting and how we were responding.

4 Q. Do you think that it is possible that you would have

5 raised the question of crime prevention advice with P157

6 at this stage?

7 A. I can't remember.

8 Q. You can't. Given the views about the leaflet that you

9 have expressed, and despite the reports coming in to the

10 effect that there was no specific threat, do you think

11 it is possible that this was the second occasion when

12 you raised that issue?

13 A. I may have done and as we talked in connection with the

14 whole August letter, I may have done.

15 Q. Yes. Now, if we look on in the bundle to RNI-101-349

16 (displayed), I hope -- yes -- we see an internal

17 memorandum from the Chief Superintendent to you dated

18 10 September, saying:

19 "Approved by CC".

20 Do you see that?

21 A. That's correct.

22 Q. And the letter we looked at just a minute ago is dated

23 3 September, but it looks, doesn't it, from the file,

24 now you have had a chance to look at it again, as though

25 this was a letter in draft that was not in fact approved





1 by the Chief Constable to go out for a week and it was

2 after that that it went out on, I think, 11 September?

3 A. During the interview I had not seen the previous

4 correspondence or wasn't aware of the dates. It is the

5 point I made earlier on. It would have been very

6 unusual not to re-date a letter before we sent it out,

7 but clearly this was one and it may have been because

8 there was no other amendments needed and it just

9 mistakenly went out without the date changed. And that

10 is what I reflecting in my statement when I said this

11 was the normal practice. We would have changed the

12 dates, as was shown on the letter of, I think, 1 April;

13 amended the dates, if not get the letter retyped.

14 Q. So this at least, of the many, many elements of

15 controversy in this story, this, I think, we may now

16 have reached a settlement on, in the sense that whereas

17 in your statement you said I'm not sure it did go out as

18 late as the 11th, it looks, doesn't it, on the basis of

19 the documents --

20 A. Certainly the correspondence I have seen would suggest

21 there was conversation beyond, I think, the 10th.

22 Q. Again, can I take it that the decision was made that the

23 letter shouldn't be issued until the Chief Constable had

24 approved it?

25 A. Certainly I wanted the Chief to see the response.





1 Q. Yes. Now, can we have the letter back to the screen,

2 please, RNI-106-314 (displayed). I'm not going to take

3 you back to Simon Rogers' letter because we looked at it

4 in detail earlier. But you may remember that he

5 referred to the claims made in the leaflet.

6 Actually, it might be easier to get it on the screen

7 on the left. Can we get it at RNI-101-327, please, so

8 you can compare the two on the screen (displayed)?

9 Thank you very much.

10 Do you see in the second paragraph when talking

11 about Rosemary Nelson, he says that:

12 "She is extremely distressed by the leaflet and

13 seriously concerned about the threat to her personality

14 safety posed by the claims in the leaflet and by the

15 circulation of her address and telephone number."

16 So address and telephone number is one thing, but

17 the other point drawn to your attention by Simon Rogers

18 in the passage that you quoted to the two

19 assistant chief constables, I should say, is the claims

20 in the leaflet.

21 Now, presumably you understood that to be that she

22 was a former bomber and she was a member of the motley

23 crew, including all these other named individuals, and

24 was engaged in paramilitary activity with them?

25 A. What I was -- sorry, in terms of my response going --





1 Q. Yes.

2 A. It was a quote just from Simon's letter. I think it was

3 to reinforce the point of view that Mrs Nelson was

4 concerned, was distressed and I was actually quoting her

5 words hopefully to give it more meaning -- sorry,

6 quoting his words.

7 Q. Exactly. What I was reminding you of was her concerns

8 were not just that the address and telephone number had

9 been distributed, but about the other claims in the

10 leaflet of the kind I have just been reminding you of,

11 namely that she was a former bomber, she was a member of

12 the motley crew engaged in paramilitary activity,

13 et cetera. Do you see that?

14 A. On Simon's letter?

15 Q. From Simon's letter, yes. In the response you give, you

16 tell them that you were advised during the Drumcree

17 period several leaflets were distributed by Loyalists,

18 and that is something we have seen in the reporting-up

19 to you. The address and telephone number included in

20 the leaflet refers to Mrs Nelson's business. Again,

21 that is something that has been said. This information

22 is listed in Yellow Pages and is, therefore, readily

23 accessible. Again, that is something that would be

24 reported to you. And obviously the key point:

25 "Police are unaware of any specific threat ..."





1 That was the term used:

2 "... against Mr Nelson"?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. So you had taken extracts from the short assessments,

5 hadn't you, and you put them in the letter?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Now, when you had considered the reports that had come

8 up to you, did you note that they themselves did not

9 focus on the other claims in the leaflet, that she was

10 a former bomber and she was a member of a motley crew of

11 paramilitaries, an associate of people, some of whom

12 were described as "murdering scum"?

13 A. Again, I would have had an expectation that the local

14 area would have taken the content of the leaflet into

15 account when they were making their assessment of any

16 threat to her.

17 Q. So, again, are we back to the answer you gave me before

18 lunch that in your role in Command Secretariat -- absent

19 an obvious mistake -- you were satisfied and didn't see

20 it as your role to challenge what was reported up to you

21 by the people on the ground who really knew what was

22 going on?

23 A. Well, I would have expected, because it went through the

24 Assistant Chief Constable, that at that level they would

25 have addressed all of the issues that were sent out.





1 Q. Yes. So in other words, so as to be clear on that,

2 because you quoted this part of the letter in your

3 original memo going down the chain, you would have

4 expected that those points would have been considered?

5 A. All of the issues, yes.

6 Q. Yes. Now, again, so far as the specific issues he

7 raised with you in his third paragraph are concerned,

8 you don't address that at all in your response, do you?

9 A. Not in the response; it was addressed in the initial --

10 I think the initial memo going out to the ACCs about

11 assessing -- maybe we can just get it back on the

12 screen, please.

13 Q. There it is, RNI-101-329 (displayed). Thank you.

14 A. Yes, it is the final paragraph of my memo.

15 Q. Yes. But in Simon Rogers' letter, you see, if you look

16 at the left, he is not just talking about threat. He is

17 asking whether specific matters could be raised, and you

18 do not give him an answer to that, do you? You don't

19 even say, "Look, the question of raising the KPPS,"

20 which is effectively what he is talking about, "doesn't

21 even arise because I'm told by the experts that there is

22 no specific threat"?

23 A. Well, certainly in my response back to Simon I don't

24 make specific reference to KPPS on the letter.

25 Q. Can you remember anything about the circumstances in





1 which your draft letter went to the Chief Constable?

2 You have explained to us why you think it happened. Was

3 there a conversation, a report back, between you and

4 P157 about this issue?

5 A. What -- just to -- I suppose, put this in context.

6 Q. Yes.

7 A. When a decision had been taken to refer stuff to the

8 Chief Constable or, indeed, even to the Chief

9 Superintendent on his own -- and that could have

10 happened -- well, it was -- depending what the

11 correspondence was dictated really the volume of stuff.

12 So I would have taken the file to the Chief

13 Superintendent with all the papers on it and he may have

14 looked at it and decided that it was something that

15 didn't need to go on or he may have said -- decided

16 himself that it should go ahead or go to the Chief.

17 On occasions, some occasions, I would have actually

18 said, you know, "I think the Chief should see that". I

19 can't remember specifically the conversation, but I

20 would have handed him the file over and he would have --

21 I mean, there were different timings in terms of

22 a response. On some occasions I would have got the

23 paperwork back very quickly. On other occasions,

24 depending what the Chief Constable was doing, it may

25 have taken a bit longer.





1 Q. Thank you. But can you just tell me this: are you able

2 to confirm one way or another whether the

3 Chief Constable was shown the letter of 6 August from

4 Simon Rogers?

5 A. I don't know.

6 Q. You don't know?

7 A. I don't know how many -- I gave certainly the Chief

8 Superintendent the correspondence. I don't know how

9 much he took to the Chief Constable.

10 Q. Thank you. Now, so far as this response is concerned --

11 and your letter still dated the 3rd, but we now agree, I

12 think, that it went out on the 11th -- do you have any

13 recollection of any come back, any telephone calls,

14 follow-up on this letter from the NIO?

15 A. This specific letter?

16 Q. Yes.

17 A. I do not have any recollection.

18 Q. Thank you. I would like to turn to the controversial

19 question of the threat note, please, which I heralded

20 a little earlier, and I would like to take you back,

21 therefore, to RNI-106-308 (displayed) and

22 Lesley Foster's letter of 26 August.

23 You told us that you were on holiday when it was

24 received, and I think that the way to do this probably

25 is to put your paragraph 38 on the screen, on the





1 right-hand side, that's RNI-841-393 (displayed). Just

2 to show you, that's the way the paragraph begins. Could

3 we then turn over, please, to RNI-841-394 (displayed)?

4 I am afraid it is awkward with the screen, but the

5 sentence at the bottom of the previous page says:

6 "I remember being informed by ..."

7 Then there is a redacted name:

8 "... a civilian member of administrative staff on my

9 first day back that we had received another fax from the

10 NIO in relation to the leaflet. Of course I already

11 knew about the leaflet as it was the same leaflet that

12 was attached to Simon Rogers' earlier letter."

13 Now, if you look at the letter on the left-hand

14 side, it refers, doesn't it, to two documents; pamphlet,

15 as it calls it, not leaflet, but that's the same thing,

16 I think, relating to Breandan Mac Cionnaith, which

17 refers to Rosemary Nelson, and the threatening note,

18 posted to Rosemary Nelson and then in brackets the words

19 "copies attached".

20 So it must have been obvious surely to anybody

21 receiving this letter that it wasn't just about the

22 leaflet that you had seen before; it was about the

23 leaflet and another document, a threatening note?

24 A. It is certainly clear to me now that it referred to

25 a threatening note. At the time on my return, I can





1 clearly remember the civilian staff member saying to me

2 that this was -- really, I suppose a duplicate of what

3 we had seen before, referring clearly to the leaflet.

4 It was a mistake, obviously, that I hadn't picked up the

5 fact that this just wasn't a leaflet. There was

6 obviously a threatening note.

7 Q. Do you think the staff member, from what you remember,

8 was under the false impression that it was only

9 referring to the leaflet?

10 A. Certainly the clear impression I got from him was that

11 this referred to the leaflet.

12 Q. Was there any suggestion made by him that you can

13 remember that there had been problems in getting hold of

14 the attachments to this letter?

15 A. I recall absolutely no conversation about any

16 difficulties or any follow-up with the NIO.

17 Q. No. I think it is obvious from what you have said that

18 you must have read the letter yourself?

19 A. I would have had I been providing a response.

20 Q. Not least because you refer to it in terms in the

21 3 September letter back to Simon Rogers. We saw that

22 earlier?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. So it looks as though you must at the time have

25 overlooked the fact that she, Lesley Foster, was talking





1 about two different documents?

2 A. Something different. And I think it was based on the

3 fact that the staff member had clearly indicated to me

4 that this was -- this correspondence was talking again

5 about the leaflet. And I saw it as a follow-up from the

6 NIO, which they did sometimes. They would have

7 occasionally expedited letters for a response.

8 Q. And I'm not saying this pejoratively, but if you had

9 misread it or misunderstood it in that way, presumably

10 you wouldn't have been thinking to yourself, "Oh, where

11 is the threatening note"?

12 A. Sorry, in terms of?

13 Q. If you had read it as you told us, that it was just

14 referring to the same document you had seen before, you

15 wouldn't have been saying to the staff member, "Well,

16 you had better show me the February note then"?

17 A. I certainly don't recall identifying the issue of the

18 threatening note having been missed.

19 Q. If everything had worked effectively and efficiently,

20 presumably you would agree that whoever received this at

21 Command Secretariat, the staff member, would have looked

22 at the letter, checked to see whether the two documents

23 had been received, and if they hadn't, then gone back to

24 the NIO?

25 A. It should have been followed up and the documentation





1 requested.

2 Q. Yes. Do you think that when you handed the draft letter

3 up or over to P157 that you would also have handed this

4 second letter from the NIO as well as Simon Rogers'

5 original letter?

6 A. He would have got the full file.

7 Q. Which would have included all the underlying

8 documentation we looked at from the region and from

9 E Department?

10 A. It would have. What I can't comment on is what he took

11 to the Chief.

12 Q. Yes. Can I also take it that if you had spotted that

13 the threat note hadn't been considered and looked for it

14 and found that you didn't have it, you would have made

15 sure that a request was made for it?

16 A. Absolutely, and would have wanted it dealt with.

17 Q. Yes. And what would you have done with it?

18 A. Well, I now have seen obviously a copy of the note.

19 Q. Yes.

20 A. So really to me it needed -- first of all, investigate

21 it, whether any investigative opportunities. Clearly

22 there was threatening, which is a crime. So I would

23 have wanted local police to investigate that. The other

24 aspect then was whether or not this -- and I would have

25 expected it to have been taken into consideration when





1 the threat assessment was being done.

2 Q. So presumably you would, you say in your statement at

3 paragraph 41 at RNI-841-395 (displayed), have wanted it

4 actioned separately and straight away?

5 A. Yes, if I had become aware of it, yes.

6 Q. And you would have sent it presumably to the same people

7 so it could be considered as part of the threat

8 assessment?

9 A. That's correct, and to the South Region, the local

10 region, for investigation.

11 Q. Yes. If we look at this together, the best copy we have

12 got, which isn't superb, but there it is, is at

13 RNI-115-351 (displayed). This is addressed to

14 Rosemary Nelson at her work address, which was referred

15 to in the pamphlet, in fact, in the leaflet -- and the

16 text of the threat is very familiar to all of us.

17 Can I just ask you this question: We know from the

18 documents we have seen on the leaflet assessment that

19 the answer locally, in terms of Special Branch, came

20 from Portadown because that's where, as I understand it,

21 the leaflet was distributed. Do you remember that?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. If this had been passed down the chain, can I take it

24 that it is likely that it would have ended up in terms

25 of local Special Branch, at Lurgan?





1 A. Sorry, could you just repeat that second part?

2 Q. We dealt with the question of where the leaflet went.

3 A. Okay.

4 Q. Assume -- it is all hypothetical, I know, but assume

5 this threat note had gone down the chain and been passed

6 to the local Special Branch office, would that have been

7 the Lurgan as opposed to Portadown Special Branch

8 office?

9 A. I'm not actually sure what their Special Branch

10 arrangements were. I would have expected in the first

11 instance, when it went to the ACC or it would have been

12 to the ACC in South Region that a decision would have

13 been taken first of all in terms of any investigation,

14 criminal investigation.

15 Q. Yes. I just want to show you something to complete the

16 picture, and in fairness -- that's RNI-102-084

17 (displayed) -- to remind you, because although the

18 report came up from Portadown, it looks as though

19 E Department, E3, had reported local Special Branch at

20 Portadown and Lurgan. So they had, in their reporting

21 up the chain, put forward the opinion of both local

22 offices?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. I would like to move on, please, to the question of what

25 happened to the files, and this takes us to the day of





1 Rosemary Nelson's murder.

2 A. Okay.

3 Q. To help you again, on the right-hand side of the screen,

4 please, can we have RNI-841-401, paragraph 58

5 (displayed)? You tell us that you were at headquarters

6 on that day. You think that P157 was on holiday?

7 A. I believe he was.

8 Q. Thank you. And you received the call from South Region

9 about the incident. Now, you tell us in the next

10 paragraph:

11 "As so many people had written in to the

12 Command Secretariat in relation to Rosemary Nelson

13 during the previous few years, I expected questions to

14 be raised as to whether the RUC had any knowledge that

15 she was at risk."

16 So can I take it then that as soon as you learned of

17 this murder, you realised that questions were going to

18 be asked of the police?

19 A. And, of course, she didn't die immediately. She was

20 injured, and I can't remember how long it was after the

21 explosion that she died, but certainly because of the

22 volume of correspondence that had come in, I expected

23 people to raise concerns about how we had responded to

24 all of the correspondence that had come in.

25 Q. And amongst the questions presumably you expected would





1 come in was, was there any warning in relation to this

2 attack?

3 A. I certainly was not aware of -- or I wouldn't -- I have

4 no recollection whatsoever of thinking of it in terms of

5 warning because I had no knowledge of any threat note at

6 this stage. But my thinking certainly was along the

7 lines that here we had people writing in expressing

8 concern about her safety, and certainly I expected

9 questions to be asked as to how we had responded to

10 those concerns that were expressed. So in terms of the

11 concerns expressed, rather than any warning that we had.

12 Q. But you say earlier in the statement, at the end of

13 paragraph 58:

14 "[You] would expect the Chief Constable would have

15 had calls with Special Branch to check if there was any

16 intelligence in connection with the attack."

17 So presumably that would be the Chief Constable

18 being concerned, one, with whether there was any

19 intelligence warning of the attack before it took place,

20 and two, whether there was any intelligence as to

21 responsibility after the attack had taken place?

22 A. Correct. The Chief Constable was someone who would have

23 had frequent contact with Special Branch and frequently

24 got individual briefings that we weren't, I suppose,

25 privy to.





1 Q. You were aware that they were taking place, these

2 briefings, but you were not part of them?

3 A. I was aware that the Head of Special Branch spoke to the

4 Chief Constable probably on a daily basic and even over

5 the weekend, but I wouldn't have been privy to that

6 information.

7 What I got from Special Branch at any stage would

8 have been sanitised reports and, you know, if there was

9 a meeting that I had to attend, it would have been

10 a sanitised brief.

11 Q. But so far as the contact between the Chief Constable

12 and Head of Special Branch, that would have been on at

13 least a daily basis, would it?

14 A. It was a frequent basis, yes.

15 Q. Thank you. Presumably as you were considering the

16 question of what to do, you were also conscious that

17 questions were likely to be asked on the lines of why

18 was nothing done to protect her, given all the concerns

19 about her safety and about her security that had been

20 raised?

21 A. Yes, I would have expect those as reasonable questions,

22 yes.

23 Q. Yes. Now, you say in the fourth line of this paragraph,

24 59, that you collected together the files straight away

25 and put them in the safe until the Chief Constable came





1 back. Can you explain to us why that was?

2 A. Because we had -- I think we had at least two and

3 possibly three files. I expected the files -- because

4 of all the concerns that were raised, that people would

5 want to refer to them. And I suppose it was just as an

6 added safeguard I put them into the safe until I got

7 a chance to discuss with the Chief as to what was going

8 to happen with them.

9 Q. Was that the equivalent then of preserving the evidence?

10 A. It certainly was preserving the files intact until I got

11 a decision from the Chief on what he wanted done --

12 Q. Can I just ask: were you concerned that if you didn't

13 lock them away, somebody would pop in and try to take

14 them away or take things out of them?

15 A. I wasn't -- I didn't think that anybody would remove

16 anything from the files. However, I wanted to be in

17 a position that if the question was asked, were these

18 files safeguarded or had anybody removed anything, then

19 I would be in a position to say I had taken possession

20 of them and put them in the safe immediately.

21 Q. In fact, when the Chief Constable got back, he told you

22 to take them out of the safe and to take them to

23 Special Branch?

24 A. That's correct.

25 Q. And did he explain why?





1 A. No.

2 Q. He did not?

3 A. I don't remember any more detailed conversation, other

4 than I was asked to take them up to Special Branch.

5 Q. Can I take it that that took place on the day of the

6 murder?

7 A. I believe it was the same day.

8 Q. Yes. And presumably once they had got into the custody

9 of Special Branch, you had no means of knowing what had

10 happened to them whatsoever?

11 A. I have had no recollection of seeing the files again

12 until after -- after the detectives had called in

13 Command Secretariat.

14 Q. And you didn't make an inventory or sort of checklist of

15 their contents at that time?

16 A. No, we didn't go through the files. We would have

17 had -- there were flysheets on the files. There was --

18 our registry system would have had stuff going in, but I

19 didn't go through the files and either copy or document

20 everything this was in them.

21 Q. You say that at some stage they came back to

22 Command Secretariat?

23 A. They must have come back, yes.

24 Q. Do you say that because you don't know when or how --

25 A. I don't know when they come back.





1 Q. And you don't know how they came back?

2 A. I don't know how long Special Branch had them, but at

3 some stage in the future they were returned to

4 Command Secretariat.

5 Q. Do you think it was weeks or months? Are you able to

6 put an estimate on it as to how long it took to get them

7 back?

8 A. I don't know. I don't know how long.

9 THE CHAIRMAN: Are you moving ahead?

10 MR PHILLIPS: Yes, I am.

11 THE CHAIRMAN: It might be a convenient time for a break.

12 We are going to have a quarter of an hour break now.

13 Mr (name redacted), before the witness leaves, would you

14 please confirm that all the cameras have been switched

15 off?

16 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

17 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. Please escort the witness out.

18 We will back at half past three.

19 (3.11 pm)

20 (Short break)

21 (3.30 pm)

22 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Currans, the checklist.

23 Is the public area screen fully if place, locked and

24 the key secured?

25 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.





1 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the fire doors on either side of the

2 screen closed?

3 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

4 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the technical support screens in place

5 and securely fastened?

6 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

7 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than Inquiry personnel and

8 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

9 of this chamber?

10 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr (name redacted), can you confirm that the witness

12 cameras have been switched off and shrouded?

13 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

14 THE CHAIRMAN: All the other cameras been switched off?

15 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.

16 THE CHAIRMAN: Bring the witness in, please.

17 The cameras on the Panel, Inquiry personnel and the

18 Full Participants' legal representatives may now be

19 switched back on.

20 Yes, Mr Phillips?

21 MR PHILLIPS: Can I just pick up a point that I should have

22 touched on in relation to the threat note? Do you

23 remember we looked at the hypothetical situation of

24 somebody in your staff at Command Secretariat spotting

25 that the Lesley Foster letter dealt with two documents





1 and, if the second one, the threat note, wasn't there,

2 what you would have expected them to do about it, namely

3 to follow up and ask the NIO to get it across? Do you

4 remember that?

5 A. That's correct.

6 Q. Just to be absolutely clear about it, would you have

7 expected that following up to be by telephone, for

8 a telephone call to be made to Police Division?

9 A. Certainly I think in the first instance, yes. And if it

10 wasn't forthcoming, then it may have to be done in

11 writing, but that would have been the quickest way to

12 deal with it.

13 Q. Thank you. To go back to the topic we were talking

14 about just before the break, you were telling us about

15 putting files into the safe and then the Chief Constable

16 telling you to take them to Special Branch. And, as you

17 said to me earlier, obviously once they got to

18 Special Branch, you weren't able to say what had

19 happened to them?

20 A. No, no, because I wasn't aware of what enquiries and

21 what other assistance they would be providing to the

22 investigation.

23 Q. Yes. Now, so far as that's concerned, you also said

24 that you weren't sure when and how the files returned to

25 Command Secretariat?





1 A. That's correct.

2 Q. You know that they did return. We are going to come on

3 to all that of in a minute.

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. But you are not sure when and how?

6 A. I don't know when they got back.

7 Q. Can I ask you to look at a particular sentence in your

8 statement, paragraph 38 at RNI-481-394 (displayed)?

9 The very last sentence in that paragraph is the one

10 I would like to look at with you. Before that, you are

11 saying:

12 "It was not until after Rosemary Nelson's death that

13 I became aware of the threatening note to Mrs Nelson

14 that should have been attached to the fax from

15 Lesley Foster when I found it on the file. In terms of

16 how this letter got on to the file, I can only assume

17 that somebody had put it on the file at a later date."

18 Then this sentence:

19 "The file had been with the murder inquiry

20 investigators in the meantime."

21 Now, that can't be right, can it, because you just

22 told us you took it from the safe to Special Branch?

23 A. I, in drafting that -- and it is probably poor

24 wording -- I would have assumed the murder investigators

25 had got access to the files.





1 Q. But it is an assumption?

2 A. It is an assumption.

3 Q. Now, we know -- and now we are moving on to another

4 topic and, indeed, a topic of some controversy -- that

5 you were visited by two officers, DC Hassan and

6 DC Neville, who were part of the Murder Investigation

7 Team on 30 March?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. And it looks from your own statement as though at that

10 time you were extremely busy not on this case at all,

11 but on all sorts of other matters?

12 A. Certainly, having read the disclosure documents, there

13 is an indication on the first occasion when they wanted

14 to see me that I was at a meeting with the military.

15 And then on the second occasion -- they saw me on the

16 second date, which was 30 March.

17 Q. You were busy in the morning, that morning as well,

18 weren't you?

19 A. I believe that was the case, from the notes.

20 Q. It looks also from the same notes that your deputy was

21 away at this point?

22 A. Yes, but I'm not sure -- I haven't had time to look into

23 that.

24 Q. And you tell us in paragraph 61 -- and this is

25 RNI-841-402 (displayed) -- that you were at the same





1 time in Command Secretariat dealing with some very

2 significant other issues as well?

3 A. Yes. Again, that was in response to a question from

4 the -- from Eversheds in terms of what else was

5 going on.

6 Q. Yes. Now, I would next like to deal, please, with the

7 question of your recollection of this interview or

8 meeting with the two DCs on 30 March. You didn't make

9 a contemporaneous note of the meeting, did you?

10 A. No, I didn't.

11 Q. And it is right, isn't it, that when, at a later stage,

12 later that year, in December, I think, you were

13 interviewed by Superintendent Short, in the course of

14 that interview you didn't mention the visit of the two

15 DCs, and, indeed, you weren't asked any questions

16 about it?

17 A. He didn't ask me about them.

18 Q. At a later stage still, because this issue had some way

19 to go even after 1999, you were interviewed, weren't

20 you, by Chief Superintendent Provoost of the Murder

21 Investigation Team?

22 A. Chief Superintendent Provoost came to see me in my

23 location that I had moved to from Command Secretariat.

24 Q. Yes. And he asked you some questions about what was

25 then the contentious question of how this threat note





1 had been dealt with between Command Secretariat and the

2 NIO: whether it was on the file, how it came to be on

3 the file, et cetera?

4 A. I think from looking back at my notes, which I think you

5 have, he had clearly asked me according to my journal

6 about the visit of the two officers in March. And I had

7 taken a note of the conversation --

8 Q. Right.

9 A. -- as I had seen it, that I had with the Chief

10 Superintendent.

11 Q. Can we look at his note of your conversation? That is

12 RNI-102-164 (displayed). Here "Interview with

13 Superintendent P136". And I think the way this works,

14 what he did -- and his questions are in type and I think

15 he has recorded yours in his handwriting -- can I ask

16 you before going to the next page of the document: had

17 you seen this before you were provided with it by the

18 Inquiry?

19 A. I don't believe so. And in fact this was raised with

20 me, I believe this same note, in interview and I didn't

21 know until you have confirmed it here today if this was

22 indeed Arthur Provoost's note. If it could have been --

23 and I'm not disputing -- he obviously took some notes --

24 if this is his note -- I would have expected to read it

25 at the time of him taking the note and actually been





1 given the opportunity to sign it, and I don't believe

2 this is signed by me.

3 Q. If we look at the next page, RNI-102-165 (displayed),

4 again the questions and answers continue, and I think

5 somewhere in the note you were asked specifically

6 whether you recalled the visit to Command Secretariat by

7 the two DCs, and your response was, "no, not really".

8 Is that correct? Can you remember that?

9 A. I think what I was saying there, I couldn't remember the

10 detail of their visit. Certainly I did not see -- and

11 I do recall that people had come to speak with me. I

12 didn't see their visit as any sort of formal interview,

13 but I certainly was aware that someone had called and,

14 indeed, I remember giving them contact details for the

15 NIO.

16 Q. The passage I had in mind -- I'm sorry, I missed the

17 reference there -- was RNI-102-164 at the bottom of the

18 page (displayed):

19 "Question: Do you recall a visit on 30 March by

20 Detective Constables Neville and Hassan from the

21 Rosemary Nelson murder investigation?"

22 And you told the Chief Superintendent:

23 "No, not really."

24 A. I think -- and, again I don't know if these are my exact

25 words -- I'm not sure at what stage they were





1 recorded -- however, I don't know that the names would

2 have meant anything to me, and that is perhaps what I'm

3 responding to, if that's the exact words.

4 Q. Let's come straight to the point: you do not have any

5 notes made at the time of the meeting of 30 March.

6 Would it be fair to say that your recollection of it now

7 is pretty sketchy?

8 A. In terms of the details of the meeting?

9 Q. Yes.

10 A. Absolutely.

11 Q. Now, one of the questions that arises is whether you

12 think that you were informed of the reason for the

13 meeting in advance and specifically on the morning of

14 30 March?

15 A. That's correct.

16 Q. Do you recall being informed of the reason for the

17 meeting?

18 A. By the two Detective Constables?

19 Q. Well, the suggestion is that earlier than that, a member

20 of the Command Secretariat staff was told, when they

21 telephoned, why it was that they wanted to see you?

22 A. Certainly I have no knowledge whatsoever of being

23 informed that this was in relation to the note. I may

24 have been informed that two detectives wanted to see me.

25 Q. Let's have a look at their material and first at





1 RNI-101-151 (displayed). This is part of a report made

2 some time later, I think. But do you see, there is

3 a recitation, a very, very long one indeed, running down

4 a single column of page after page after page, but it is

5 part of their attempts to contact you when you were

6 unavailable. Do you see:

7 "Spoke to ..."

8 Then there is a name redacted:

9 "Superintendent P136 unavailable. Made request for

10 better copies of threat messages re Rosemary Nelson and

11 that they contact both NIO and ICPC re any original

12 threats re Rosemary Nelson."

13 Do you see that?

14 A. Yes, I see that.

15 Q. And the suggestion is that that message was conveyed

16 that morning before -- if you turn over to the next page

17 at RNI-101-152 (displayed), about halfway down -- they

18 arrived at RUC HQ. Do you see there -- it is being

19 enlarged -- and spoke with you?

20 A. That's correct, I see that.

21 Q. So it looks, doesn't it, as though the reason for their

22 visit was made clear, at least to staff at

23 Command Secretariat, namely that they were on the trail

24 of these particular documents and the threat message is

25 what is referred to there?





1 A. Certainly if there had been any reference to me about

2 a threat note, I would have remembered it and I would

3 have done something about it. But certainly I can't

4 comment on what conversation went on between my staff

5 and the two detectives. Had they have made a reference

6 at any stage to me about a threat note, that would have

7 jumped out at me and would have been dealt with.

8 Q. You are saying, are you, that no message of that kind

9 reached you before their visit to Command Secretariat?

10 A. Not -- it was never clear to me that that meeting was

11 about a threat -- a missing threat note.

12 Q. And you are saying it wasn't clear to you even during

13 the course of the meeting itself?

14 A. Absolutely.

15 Q. At no point?

16 A. I was never aware that -- there was the aspect of the

17 missing threat note in the file, that that's what they

18 were talking about.

19 Q. Do you think you weren't even aware at that point that

20 the threat note was missing, if it was missing?

21 A. In the conversation I had with the two detectives?

22 Q. Yes.

23 A. Absolutely.

24 Q. Can I ask you this question: Why then, if you weren't

25 given this specific explanation about it, did you think





1 they were calling round to speak to you as part of the

2 investigation of Rosemary Nelson's murder?

3 A. I suppose because we had all this correspondence going

4 back and forward, and I certainly remember a request --

5 I think I gave them contact details for Lesley Foster.

6 So I didn't see it as unusual. But I didn't see it

7 as -- there was nothing in that conversation that struck

8 me and there certainly was nothing in that conversation

9 that made me believe that they were talking about

10 a threat note.

11 Q. Right. Well, let's look in a little more detail at the

12 records they have made of what happened at the meeting.

13 In particular, can you look, please, at RNI-102-134

14 (displayed)? Again, this is part of a longer document.

15 I'm looking at it in the middle. I think this document

16 appears to have been generated in December, by the look

17 of the previous page.

18 But in the second paragraph, do you see there, in

19 the fourth line:

20 "On 30 March 1999, contact was made with

21 Superintendent 136, Command Secretariat. She was

22 visited, and files concerning Rosemary Nelson were

23 perused. No original threat messages were found.

24 However, the files did contain a copy of one of the two

25 threats already in the possession of the Inquiry team."





1 And there is other material from them in the file,

2 and of course, as you know, statements from them. Do

3 you accept now at the very least that during their

4 visit, at least one of your files was provided to them

5 and looked at or, as they put it there, perused by them?

6 A. Certainly they may have gone -- the files -- if they had

7 asked for the files, the files would have been produced

8 and they may have gone through them. What I'm trying to

9 say is that at no stage in those conversations was it

10 ever apparent to me that they were talking about

11 a threat note.

12 Q. So you don't think that you knew the purpose of the

13 meeting before it? You do not think they explained to

14 you why they were there when you met them, and you don't

15 think that they specifically told you that they were

16 concerned to establish the whereabouts of any original

17 threat messages relating to Rosemary Nelson?

18 A. At no time was it clear to me in that conversation that

19 there was an issue about a threat note. I presume in

20 the second paragraph when we talk about a copy of one of

21 the two threats, that's the leaflet they are

22 referring to.

23 Q. I assume it is, but that's really a question for them.

24 A. At no time was it apparent to me that they were talking

25 about a threat note.





1 Q. Can I just ask you then to help with this: what is your

2 recollection of what was discussed and what happened in

3 that meeting?

4 A. I can't recall because, again, I didn't see it as

5 a formal interview. Had I have seen it as some sort of

6 formal interview process, I would have had records from

7 my journal, in the way that I had for the Chief

8 Superintendent Provoost interview.

9 Q. Right. But there are no records, none in relation to

10 this meeting?

11 A. Certainly I do not have a record --

12 Q. Made by you, mean?

13 A. -- of my journal of this, and that's why I didn't see

14 it -- I certainly didn't read what they were saying as

15 any sort of a formal process or I would have had

16 a record.

17 Q. Can I just remind you of the relevant part of your

18 statement? That is paragraph 64 at RNI-841-403

19 (displayed). What you say is about five lines from the

20 end:

21 "We had a general chat about the Command Secretariat

22 files, but I'm very sure that the absence of any

23 document was not raised with me at that time."

24 In other words, you are saying, are you, if I can

25 put it that way, that the penny didn't drop in relation





1 to that missing threat note, whether or not it was

2 missing, in this meeting of 30 March?

3 A. I think what I'm saying is that I believe this meeting

4 was a general discussion I think in terms of probably

5 correspondence, and that's why I believe I was asked

6 about the NIO details.

7 What I'm also saying is that at no time did the

8 content of the conversation, or the information I was

9 giving, make me believe that this was a conversation

10 about a missing threat note.

11 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: Mr Phillips, can I just query one

12 thing. Obviously, I suppose this will take on some

13 significance at some stage, but you say this was an

14 interview that took place on 30 March or thereabouts.

15 That actual record sheet that you showed us, you say

16 that was dated in December?

17 MR PHILLIPS: That's my inference, sir, if you look at the

18 top of the previous page. Perhaps we could have it on

19 the screen, RNI-102-133 (displayed). There, I think it

20 says 09/12/99.

21 MR GRIFFIN: May I help, because in fact it is an earlier

22 date. This is an action that's raised, number 502. If

23 we look down to the second third of the page, the middle

24 of the page, we see various dates there that relate to

25 the actions that were taken flowing from the original





1 action. And we can see that on 29 March 1999, this

2 particular action is allocated to one of the two

3 officers that visited this witness. And if we drop down

4 to the beginning of the big chunk of text, we can see

5 that on 2 April 1999, that has been entered by another

6 of the officers at just before 5 pm.

7 MR PHILLIPS: Thank you.

8 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: And in relation to the notes taken by

9 the two officers of the interview, are those notes

10 dated?

11 MR PHILLIPS: Again, sir, I may be completely wrong about

12 this, but I think there is a report by them, which is

13 well over a year later. And then there are notebooks,

14 parts of which we have in the files in handwriting, but

15 I'm not sure they get into the sort of details that we

16 are now discussing. But, again, if I'm wrong about

17 that, it will no doubt be pointed out.

18 MR GRIFFIN: The document that was shown on the screen was

19 a police notebook. The entry was made on the day,

20 30 March. There is a more detailed report, and

21 Mr Phillips is absolutely right, that is made some time

22 afterwards.

23 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: But the transcript of the pocket

24 notebooks was made, as you say, on the day of the

25 interview?






2 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: Thank you very much. Thank you,

3 Mr Phillips.

4 MR PHILLIPS: With some trepidation, I'm going to ask you

5 some questions about some yet further records which you

6 have now mentioned, I think, at least twice.

7 I think you said that you made notes of the

8 interview with Chief Superintendent Provoost in your own

9 journal; is that right?

10 A. I made that after -- I wasn't sitting writing those

11 notes at the time, but the note that is there would have

12 been made after he and I had spoken.

13 Q. Right. Did you say -- because I'm not aware of parts of

14 your journal having made their way into our files --

15 that those journals have been disclosed to the Inquiry?

16 A. Certainly I disclosed stuff to my legal representative.

17 Q. It is not quite the same thing, but perhaps that is

18 something.

19 MR ROBINSON: May I assist? They were sent to the Inquiry

20 yesterday.

21 MR PHILLIPS: That news hasn't reached me. I think what

22 I suggest we do is see whether and how far they take us,

23 and if we need to, we can return to it in due course.

24 I certainly wasn't aware of them --

25 THE CHAIRMAN: Do you want literally two minutes to look at





1 them, or do you want --

2 MR PHILLIPS: I'm not sure how big they are, how many pages

3 they are.

4 MR ROBINSON: If I may assist, sir, they are simply two

5 pages.

6 THE CHAIRMAN: Should we literally break off for a couple of

7 minutes this time? Yes. We will do that, unless you

8 can do it with us present?

9 MR PHILLIPS: I think I would prefer to do that because

10 otherwise we will have to go into all the rigmarole --

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Could they be handed over, if you don't mind?

12 MR ROBINSON: If Counsel to the Inquiry has them ...

13 (Handed).

14 THE CHAIRMAN: This will save the rigmarole of going in and

15 out, you understand. (Pause)

16 MR GRIFFIN: While Mr Phillips is doing that, since those

17 are notes relating to an interview with someone

18 I represent, I wonder if my learned friend has another

19 copy that we might look at at the same time?

20 DAME VALERIE STRACHAN: While all that is happening, could

21 I take advantage just to ask the witness: we have talked

22 a bit about context, and in your statement you refer to

23 the fact that a significant amount of correspondence

24 went across your desk daily.

25 Could you give me some sort of quantification,





1 because I imagine that, you know, we are looking at the

2 Rosemary Nelson case and it is very easy to get tunnel

3 vision. I would like a feel for how many bits of paper

4 were crossing your desk on a daily basis.

5 A. It is difficult to get into numbers because it really

6 varied, what was going on, and you could have had some

7 correspondence that was relatively straightforward,

8 didn't need an awful lot of work; other pieces of

9 correspondence did generate further work.

10 In terms of numbers, I highlight in my statement,

11 obviously at the same time with the Omagh -- just after

12 the Omagh bombing, we had the Billy Wright and there was

13 a lot of correspondence going on --

14 DAME VALERIE STRACHAN: Would it be ten bits of paper, a

15 hundred bits of paper?

16 A. It certainly would have been more than ten bits of

17 paper. It was quite a significant volume, if that

18 helps.

19 I'm sure there's figures, probably, within Command

20 Secretariat because the files could have been -- I'm

21 sure on our Mars system there would have been a record

22 of the number of files received, but it was quite

23 substantial. You know -- I mean, I think it wouldn't do

24 justice probably to put a number on because it varied so

25 much, but it was a significant amount of work.





1 DAME VALERIE STRACHAN: I think it will be worthwhile

2 following that through separately just to give ourselves

3 some context.

4 MR PHILLIPS: Well, now, can I just deal with this now, sir.

5 This hasn't been subjected to any of the ciphering or

6 redaction process, so I'm just going to launch off, as

7 it were, blind.

8 First of all, there is nothing here, is there, in

9 relation to the visit on 30 March 1999?

10 A. Well, there is a reference to the visit.

11 Q. There is a reference to it, but it is not a note made at

12 the time of that visit, is it?

13 A. On 30 March?

14 Q. Yes.

15 A. No.

16 Q. Thanks. There is, however, a note made at the time of

17 your conversation with Arthur Provoost?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. And I think the simplest thing, sir, is if I just read

20 it out:

21 "Meeting with Nelson Inquiry team member, Arthur

22 Provoost at ..."

23 I am not sure what that is? What does that say? At

24 where?

25 A. It is an abbreviation for a police station, a police





1 station in West Belfast.

2 Q. Thank you very much:

3 "... to discuss his review into inquiry by DS Short

4 re administration of threat note. Sought clarification

5 of my meeting with two members of his team on

6 30 March 1999. They had said note was not on file at

7 that time. I revealed I could not remember detail of

8 their inquiry, but believed I had explained the general

9 content of files held by Com Sec. I have no

10 recollection of any discussion about a threat note. He

11 confirmed members would not have had note with them at

12 our meeting."

13 Does that mean the members of the investigation

14 team?

15 A. Those three officers.

16 Q. "I explained action I would have taken on being advised

17 or becoming aware of such a note in accordance with

18 force order, action invest --"

19 Is that "investigation"?

20 A. "... action investigation and follow-up, including crime

21 prevention by our South Region."

22 Q. Thank you:

23 "Also send to E Department to assess the threat."

24 You had noted the meeting began at 10.30 and it

25 ended at 11.30.





1 So in summary you were telling him you couldn't

2 remember the detail of the Inquiry, but you thought that

3 you had explained the general content of the files held

4 by Command Secretariat?

5 A. Which is what I believed was their enquiry about. It

6 was a general enquiry about files in

7 Command Secretariat.

8 Q. And you told him, as far as your note goes, that you had

9 no recollection of any discussion about a threat note?

10 A. Absolutely.

11 Q. I hope I'm not repeating myself, but do you have any

12 specific recollection of going through

13 a Command Secretariat file or files with them?

14 A. I couldn't say that I didn't go through a file, but

15 certainly had there been anything said to me that made

16 me believe they were talking about the threat note,

17 something wasn't there, then that would have registered

18 and it would have been dealt with.

19 Q. On your account and recollection of the matter, when did

20 you first become aware of this issue and go and check

21 the file?

22 A. As I have said in my statement, and without -- I'm happy

23 to paraphrase without the statement.

24 Q. Do you want to have a look? It is RNI-841-404,

25 paragraph 67 and following (displayed).





1 A. At that time, the minutes of the police authority, which

2 was the forerunner to the policing board, had -- they

3 had started to make them public, and I can recall, after

4 a particular meeting -- I think it was the April

5 meeting -- where the -- I suppose to put it into

6 context, the police authority meetings every month,

7 there was a number of questions posed for the

8 Chief Constable. The responses to those questions were

9 generally prepared by Command Secretariat.

10 On occasions the Chief would have been able to

11 answer questions without any draft response, and so on

12 some occasions a question would have arisen in the

13 meeting that he would have responded to without any

14 other documents from us.

15 After that meeting, a question -- there had

16 obviously been a question in the meeting about whether

17 or not there was a threat, we were aware of a threat to

18 Mrs Nelson. The Chief Constable -- and I do not have

19 his exact words obviously -- must have responded in the

20 negative to say there was no --

21 Q. Shall we have a look at the minute? It is at

22 RNI-116-111 (displayed). Do you see it is the third

23 paragraph there from the bottom "members raised --

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. "The Chief Constable advised that Mrs Nelson had not





1 sought security advice from the RUC and indicated that

2 prior to her murder, the RUC did not have information to

3 suggest that she was the subject of a specific terrorist

4 threat."

5 So you think that was what led to the journalists'

6 publishing about it?

7 A. When those notes were made public, there was obviously

8 a query, a question back to us as to why this statement

9 had been made. On the back of that, I went to the --

10 because I wanted to know -- I wasn't aware of what

11 people were talking about or what the query was. I went

12 to the Command Secretariat files and at that stage the

13 note was on the file.

14 Q. Right. And can you remember roughly when this was?

15 A. It was in May. I think I have the date in my statement.

16 Q. You think May 1999, do you?

17 A. I thought I had covered it in my statement.

18 Q. Well, you say in paragraph 71, at the top of the page,

19 RNI-841-405 (displayed):

20 "I don't recall if there was anyone else about when

21 I opened the files and found the note in or

22 around May 1999."

23 Is that what you mean?

24 A. It would be consistent with the police authority meeting

25 having been in April and a short time to get the minutes





1 into the public domain and then for a query to arise.

2 Q. So this is now some weeks after the meeting you had had

3 with the DCs, Hassan and Neville?

4 A. That's correct.

5 Q. And you are not able to say, presumably, when the

6 particular file that you then say you looked at and

7 found the threat note in, when that came back from

8 Special Branch to Command Secretariat?

9 A. No, I don't know when it come back.

10 Q. But can I take it from what you said that on your

11 account anyway, you had had no cause to look at it or

12 open it or consider it, that file, at any point between

13 the day of the murder and when you found it, you say,

14 in May 1999?

15 A. Other than whatever I did with the files, whenever the

16 two detectives had come in March, if the files were

17 produced then.

18 Q. As far as you are aware, between that meeting on

19 30 March and the time you found it in or around May,

20 that file remained in Command Secretariat?

21 A. I would have expected so. Again, it would be on the

22 record of where the files were and the movement of the

23 files.

24 Q. Now, you tell us that you were shocked and annoyed when

25 you found it there because this, you say, was the first





1 time you had ever seen it?

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. Can I ask you to help us, please, with where it was

4 sitting, as it were, in the file?

5 A. And, again, because I recall this because it was a big

6 event -- I mean, it was shocking -- when I opened the

7 file, I can remember going through the file and

8 certainly the note -- to me, it was -- it wasn't sitting

9 on the top of the file; it was where I would have

10 expected the correspondence to be. I think it was in

11 date order.

12 Q. So it was in the correct order, if I can put it that

13 way?

14 A. Certainly that's -- yes.

15 Q. Does it follow from that that it was with the leaflet

16 and behind the fax cover sheet and the letter from

17 Lesley Foster of 26 August?

18 A. My clear recollection is that, yes, there was the

19 covering sheet, the letter and the other two documents,

20 the leaflet and the threat note, and I recall that it

21 was clear that the staples in the two -- the leaflet and

22 the threat note -- were in a different position to the

23 two -- the cover sheet and the letter. It was clear

24 that they had been stapled differently at some stage.

25 Q. So that had been stapled in one place, as it were, and





1 you could see that there was a mark where they had been

2 stapled in some other place earlier; is that right?

3 A. I could see there was a different mark where the leaflet

4 and the threat note had been stapled.

5 Q. So it looked, then, that somebody had unstapled them and

6 then stapled them back together again?

7 A. I think what it was saying to me was that the documents

8 at some stage had been separate. They were not all part

9 of the one set of papers.

10 Q. Yes. Now, if you look, please, with me at the

11 Superintendent Short report, and only a little bit of

12 it, but RNI-102-063 is the relevant passage (displayed),

13 you will see he describes the various documents that he

14 had had to consider in the course of his investigation.

15 The relevant one is document 4 and he there says that it

16 consists of four pages, the first of which is the

17 flysheet. We have seen that. And the bottom of the

18 page is the comment from Lesley Foster, which you will

19 remember.

20 The second page is her letter, do you see, the

21 letter to you, 26 August? At the top of each page is

22 the date, the time and the direction of post, 001, 002

23 and then 002/002. Do you remember I pointed that out to

24 you a little earlier?

25 A. Sorry, which --





1 Q. We are now at the bottom under document 4, do you see

2 that?

3 A. Hm-mm.

4 Q. This is his very detailed description of the documents

5 he was looking at and this is the relevant one. Four

6 pages, yes? On the first one, the fax cover sheet, the

7 message from her:

8 "I am afraid with annual leave this has sat around

9 for a few days."

10 Second page of her letter to you, and what he is

11 saying is that at the top of each page is the time,

12 direction of post, Police Division to

13 Command Secretariat, and the number, 956, and the first

14 page top right-hand corner, we know, because we saw this

15 earlier, 001/002 and the second page, 002/002.

16 Then he says page 3 is a copy of the leaflet and

17 page 4 is the copy of an envelope and the poor quality

18 note, which again we looked at together earlier.

19 And he says at the top of the next page:

20 "Pages 3 and 4 do not bear the same markings as

21 previously referred to in pages 1 and 2."

22 So can I just take it that when you found the note,

23 it was in the same order, i.e. the four documents

24 together, that he describes there in his report?

25 A. Certainly my recollection was it was in that order.





1 Q. Yes. And the leaflet and the threat note were next to

2 each other and they were behind the cover sheet and the

3 letter of 26 August?

4 A. That's my recollection.

5 Q. He then exhibited the threat note and the leaflet to his

6 report, and we can see copies there at RNI-102-091 and

7 RNI-102-093 (displayed). I am afraid the second one is

8 a very bad copy even by the standards of the threat

9 note. But the point that is being made here is that

10 these two documents, unlike the fax header sheet and the

11 letter from Lesley Foster, do not bear the fax details

12 at the top, and that's right, isn't it?

13 A. That's correct. To me, they were different. They had

14 come in in a different way.

15 Q. Yes, which suggests -- I assume you would accept this --

16 that the fax cover sheet and the letter of 26 August

17 were retained in the faxed form in which they had

18 arrived on the file, but the pamphlet and the threat

19 note, which you found on the file and which the

20 Superintendent dealt with, must have arrived some other

21 way, not by fax?

22 A. That's correct.

23 Q. Yes. And are you able to give the Inquiry any

24 assistance as to how the threat note came to find its

25 way into that file?





1 A. I don't know. I would suspect it wasn't one that was

2 sent direct from the NIO because they would have

3 normally faxed it and I would have expected to see a fax

4 number on the top of the letter, but I don't know. Or

5 the top of the correspondence.

6 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: But this was only one copy of the "Man

7 Without a Future" pamphlet, the one presumably sent

8 originally from the NIO?

9 A. There was one sent on 6 August, sir.

10 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: Yes, which was sent by fax.

11 A. That would have been earlier correspondence.


13 A. Then the subsequent correspondence, and I can't

14 remember whether there was a duplicate copy. Certainly

15 the one that I looked at had -- the leaflet and the

16 threat note was different and the staple holes had been

17 in a different location.

18 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: But you weren't able to say at that

19 time whether the original pamphlet, "Man Without

20 a Future", which had been sent from the NIO was still on

21 the file?

22 A. I can't remember if it was still on the file.

23 SIR ANTHONY BURDEN: Okay, thank you.

24 MR PHILLIPS: Now, so far as the short report is

25 concerned -- again, I would like to take this very





1 briefly -- we can see from the introduction to it that

2 he was asked to conduct it in, I think, December 1999,

3 if you look with me at RNI-102-062 (displayed). And it

4 followed a meeting he had with -- do you see "threat" at

5 the top on the left, the Chief Constable and your boss,

6 P157? I assume you can't help with the circumstances

7 which led to that investigation being set up?

8 A. No, I don't know what the background was and how he was

9 selected to do that, no.

10 Q. Now, in the course of his enquiry he interviewed you,

11 didn't he, Mr Short?

12 A. There is a record of an interview with him, yes.

13 Q. And we can look at that together, RNI-102-123

14 (displayed), and that took place on 14 December, we can

15 see. And in the very long answer you give to his second

16 question, you explain, don't you, how you came to come

17 across the threat note in the file. And although there

18 is a date wrong, I am afraid -- it says May 1998, where

19 it should be, I think, May 1999 --

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. -- you say it was that:

22 "Following reaction to the publication of police

23 authority minutes that I became aware of the existence

24 of a threat note in the file. There was a query from

25 the press office re a call from the Irish News. We are





1 seeking reply. I believe this may have been 27 May 1999

2 some time after five."

3 So at this point in December that year, you were

4 much more precise about your dates?

5 A. That's correct.

6 Q. "I spoke to Simon Rogers at the NIO, told him I was

7 working on a reply for press office and asked to see a

8 copy of what had gone to CAJ following my reply letter

9 of 3 September. Eventually received an unsigned draft

10 and was advised by Simon that it went out as per the

11 draft and signed by [G105] on behalf of Mr Ingram."

12 Then moving down the page, please, produce

13 document 4:

14 "When did you first see this threat note?

15 "Answer: When I checked the file when making the my

16 for the press office.

17 "Question: Did you see it before?

18 "Answer: No, I was shocked when I found it.

19 "Question: What did you do?

20 "Answer: Spoke to [P157]. We spoke to everybody in

21 Command Secretariat in an effort to identify who had

22 placed it in the file, when it had happened and how it

23 was received at Command Secretariat as it was not

24 entered in the Mars computer record.

25 "Question: Did you have any success?





1 "Answer: No.

2 "Question: Can you offer any further assistance

3 re this threat note?

4 "Answer: No, I have told you everything."

5 That takes us to the next stage, if I can put it

6 this way. After you had made the discovery of the

7 threat note, it looks as though you refer to the Chief

8 Superintendent?

9 A. That's correct.

10 Q. You had a discussion about it and launched, as it were,

11 an internal, a mini investigation?

12 A. According to the notes, yes, and that would seem logical

13 that we would want to know if anybody knew anything

14 about it.

15 Q. But there was no record in the Mars system -- that is

16 the system that tracks outgoing and incoming material,

17 isn't it?

18 A. That's correct.

19 Q. -- of its arrival?

20 A. That's correct.

21 Q. Now, if you look at the NIO letter, which you sought a

22 copy of -- that is at RNI-106-324 (displayed) -- and you

23 will see that the previous year in dealing with

24 Mr Mageean's enquiries, the NIO had said:

25 "We passed the documents [plural] immediately to the





1 Chief Constable's office for investigation. They would

2 obviously, given the nature of the material, assess the

3 security risk against Mrs Nelson."

4 So presumably when you saw that, you realised that

5 they had been under the impression that you had

6 considered both documents in assessing her security or

7 her safety?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. I would like to end by asking you some questions on

10 a much more general basis about the business of these

11 assessments that you have told us about in 1998. And I

12 would like to take you, please, to some of the

13 conclusions of the Police Ombudsman who, as I said right

14 at the outset, investigated all of this. They are at

15 RNI-834-108 (displayed).

16 Now, paragraph 25.1 is the paragraph I'm hoping to

17 see at RNI-834-108 (displayed), thank you. "General

18 conclusions". What I'm using this for is to highlight

19 my question to you about the way in which these matters

20 were approached at the time.

21 Do you see in this paragraph that what the Ombudsman

22 was criticising was the fact that there appeared to be

23 nobody within the organisation under the procedures then

24 in place who considered the totality of the material

25 coming into the organisation over months and years in





1 order to arrive at the assessment?

2 A. Certainly that was -- yes, what I read from the

3 Ombudsman's report. I wasn't actually interviewed by

4 the Ombudsman in relation to this.

5 Q. But so far as it goes, that is a fair point, isn't it,

6 that nobody within the organisation who was doing the

7 assessments was looking at the overall picture?

8 A. Certainly that was what the Ombudsman throughout -- the

9 lack of corporate approach, somebody joining all this up

10 and making an overall assessment.

11 Q. So the local Special Branch officers were looking at

12 their intelligence, working out what was going on on the

13 ground. That's correct, isn't it?

14 A. They would have been asked, on behalf of the local

15 division, to do whatever assessments were needed to be

16 done.

17 Q. But they weren't taking into account the NGO

18 correspondence, all the complaints material which was

19 known to another section, namely Complaints and

20 Discipline, for example, would they?

21 A. I would have expected that they would have taken into

22 account whatever had gone out to them.

23 Q. Indeed.

24 A. As part of the assessment.

25 Q. But you will remember that what came down from you --





1 because in each case it was Command Secretariat who

2 initiated the process -- was very specific information,

3 and in the case of the August incident, the single

4 leaflet. That's what they had to go on and then they

5 brought to bear whatever intelligence they had, you

6 know, in their systems?

7 A. That's correct. They would have -- I would have

8 expected them to look at what was given to them in

9 addition to any intelligence branch systems.

10 Q. Yes. Now, so far as the comment at the end is

11 concerned:

12 "No individual officer had responsibility for

13 bringing together all these matters and making a risk

14 and threat assessment based on all the available

15 information. There was no systems designed to ensure

16 that information was captured in the process."

17 The truth is, surely, that the part of the RUC that

18 was in the best place to take an overall view to form an

19 overall assessment was your part of it, namely

20 Command Secretariat, because it was through

21 Command Secretariat, as we have seen, that material of

22 all kinds flowed in these years prior to

23 Rosemary Nelson's murder?

24 A. I would say that the people best skilled and best placed

25 were actually the local district or division because





1 they would have had the knowledge.

2 As I highlighted earlier in evidence,

3 Command Secretariat had no access whatsoever to the

4 intelligence. They didn't know what information was

5 available locally. So the people best placed to

6 actually assess the risk would have been the local

7 division in consultation with Special Branch.

8 Q. So I think what that answer highlights is that there

9 were limits, whichever way you look at it, there were

10 limits to the sharing of information. Whose ever fault

11 that was, whether it was systemic or the result of

12 individuals, the net result was that nobody was forming

13 this overall view in relation to her safety?

14 A. I think -- it certainly highlighted the difficulties in

15 terms of dealing with threats. I mean, within -- and

16 certainly in my last role, I had a very significant part

17 in trying to deal with threats and this was a huge area

18 of business in terms of even in the current police time

19 we would have dealt with over 2,000 threats per year.

20 And, indeed, out of one incident, I can recall over

21 3,000 pieces of information, threat information going

22 out to individuals.

23 So it was a significant role, and an added

24 difficulty was where you had third party complaints of

25 threats, and this was an issue I raised myself of





1 concern in my last role, in that third party information

2 was very difficult to assess and really we wanted to get

3 to the source as much as we could to assess what the

4 threat was because these were coming in certainly in my

5 last job frequently, and I felt needed to be properly

6 investigated. But my concern was, if you could not get

7 to the person who was receiving that information, it

8 made the investigation very difficult.

9 Q. Those are the questions I had for you, but I always say

10 to a witness, as I'm sure you know, that if there is

11 anything we haven't covered which you would like to

12 mention to the Inquiry Panel, this is your opportunity.

13 A. No, just in terms of trying to be helpful to the Panel,

14 I was going to outline the threats issue in terms of

15 scale and context, which I have just done, so I have no

16 further issues.

17 Q. Thank you very much.

18 THE CHAIRMAN: We are very grateful for the full and candid

19 answers you have given to us. Thank you very much for

20 coming.

21 A. Thank you.

22 THE CHAIRMAN: Before the witness leaves, would you, please,

23 confirm, Mr (name redacted), that the cameras have been

24 switched off?

25 MR (NAME REDACTED): Yes, sir, they have.





1 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. Please escort the witness out.

2 We shall assemble again on Tuesday at 10.15.

3 (4.26 pm)

4 (The Inquiry adjourned until Tuesday, 14 October 2008 at

5 10.15 am)
























1 I N D E X

Housekeeping ..................................... 1
P136 (sworn) ..................................... 3
Questions by MR PHILLIPS ..................... 3