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Full Hearings

Hearing: 18th September 2008, day 52

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ROSEMARY NELSON

PUBLIC INQUIRY

 

 

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


on Thursday, 18 September 2008
commencing at 10.15 am


Day 52

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



1 Thursday, 18 September 2008

2 (10.15 am)

3 P121 (continued)

4 Questions by MR PHILLIPS (continued)

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

6 with you, please, before the witness comes in?

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

8 the key secured?

9 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

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

11 screen closed?

12 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

13 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the technical support screens in place

14 and securely fastened?

15 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

16 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than Inquiry personnel and

17 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

18 of this chamber?

19 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

20 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr [name redacted], can you confirm, please,

21 that the two witness cameras have been switched off and

22 shrouded?

23 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they have.

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

25 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they have.

 

 

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1 THE CHAIRMAN: Bring the witness in, please.

2 The cameras on the Panel, Inquiry personnel and Full

3 Participants' legal representatives may now be switched

4 back on.

5 Yes, Mr Phillips?

6 MR PHILLIPS: Before moving on in the history of these

7 complaints that we were looking at yesterday, I would

8 like to go back to touch on a couple of points I should

9 have covered with you yesterday.

10 Do you remember during the course of yesterday

11 afternoon I asked whether you had been aware, at the

12 time of the interviewing in the various cases, that

13 complaints were being made?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Yes. And I think in summary you said that you couldn't

16 recall being made aware of them at the time?

17 A. Yes, I think that's correct, yes.

18 Q. I would like to just show you some documents, please, to

19 help you, and the first is at RNI-204-021 (displayed).

20 Thank you.

21 Now, this is a form issued, I believe, at the end of

22 a time in detention. Is it a form that you recognise?

23 A. Yes, I recognise it, but I think it forms part of the

24 custody record, which --

25 Q. It does indeed, for which you had no responsibility?

 

 

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1 A. No responsibility.

2 Q. No. I'm not suggesting that you would have seen the

3 form at the time and had anything very much to do with

4 it, but just to help you, we can see here for this

5 particular client, C138, the question is in the middle,

6 whether he had any complaints to make, and you see the

7 line says:

8 "My reply is no."

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Then he signs. So it suggests, doesn't it, that

11 certainly in that case the record showed -- and signed

12 by the suspect on leaving detention -- that he had no

13 complaints?

14 A. That's correct, yes.

15 Q. Now, a similar document, please, for Anthony Simmons at

16 RNI-204-238 (displayed)?

17 A. Yes, that's the same form.

18 Q. And here the variation is that the signature is refused.

19 Do you see?

20 A. That's correct, yes.

21 Q. But it looks as though there was an answer given to the

22 question, but a signature was not provided. Then

23 finally Barry Toman, RNI-205-017 (displayed). The reply

24 is recorded as being stated:

25 "No, none at all."

 

 

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1 And, again, a signature is refused.

2 A. That's correct, yes.

3 Q. We know in the case of Colin Duffy in 1997 that

4 a complaint was indeed made and we went through all of

5 that yesterday afternoon. But it looks, doesn't it, as

6 though there was certainly no complaint raised in the

7 other three cases during the time of detention?

8 A. That's correct, yes.

9 Q. We were talking yesterday about motivation, ie the

10 motivation for the complaints in your view, and we

11 looked together at a passage of an interview in the

12 course of the Mulvihill stage of the investigation, and

13 I said at that stage that I wanted to show you another

14 passage. I would like to look at it with you now,

15 please. That's at RNI-226-180 (displayed).

16 Now, again, this is a very long interview. It took

17 place on the same day as the other one, 11 November. We

18 can see the first page at RNI-226-170 (displayed), the

19 same cast, same people. We have looked at this document

20 before.

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. But if we turn on ten pages to RNI-226-180 (displayed),

23 to the passage I would like to ask you about now,

24 because here you gave an explanation of your view of the

25 complaints, why they have been made, in answer to a very

 

 

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1 open question at the top of the page:

2 "Do you wish to add anything further or to clarify

3 any point?"

4 You said:

5 "Yes, I feel that all these allegations are

6 fabricated, they are totally untrue. I am disgusted by

7 them. Complaints of this nature have not been made

8 against me before. I feel they're fabricated in an

9 effort to discredit the name of the Royal Ulster

10 Constabulary as a whole and me in particular."

11 Now, just taking those points in turn, you say

12 there -- this is November of 1998 -- the complaints

13 arose from, as we know, events in February and

14 then June 1997 -- that you had not had complaints of

15 that kind made against you before?

16 A. That's correct, yes.

17 Q. So far as this complaint is concerned -- you were being

18 interviewed here about the Colin Duffy/Rosemary Nelson

19 complaints -- you say you feel they are fabricated in an

20 effort to discredit the name of the Royal Ulster

21 Constabulary.

22 Now, complaints in June 1997 were made both by the

23 client, Colin Duffy, and by Rosemary Nelson herself, as

24 you know?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

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1 Q. So you are saying, aren't you, that the Rosemary Nelson

2 complaints were fabricated in an effort to discredit the

3 name of the RUC?

4 A. Yes, Rosemary Nelson's complaints were made on behalf of

5 her client. I feel there is a difference there. She

6 was making the complaints on behalf of her client. It

7 is not a complaint made by Rosemary Nelson as such.

8 Q. Well, it was a complaint that she made. She was listed

9 formally as the complainant. We saw, didn't we,

10 yesterday, how she put forward the complaints during the

11 course of the detention?

12 A. Yes, but at no time did she allege that these comments

13 were made to her. They were made to her client.

14 Hearsay, I would say that was.

15 Q. But she was nevertheless putting them forward, wasn't

16 she?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And in your view they were fabricated in an effort to

19 discredit the police force?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Did you regard her then as a willing tool?

22 A. No.

23 Q. How did you regard her?

24 A. I regarded -- as I said in my evidence yesterday, she

25 was a solicitor with a job to do. She had to represent

 

 

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1 her clients to the best of her ability.

2 Q. But it was no part of her job, was it, to discredit the

3 RUC?

4 A. No, probably not, but ...

5 Q. It was her job to represent her clients?

6 A. That's correct, yes.

7 Q. And as you saw it, these complaints had nothing to do

8 with representing her client; they were to do with

9 undermining the whole of the police force?

10 A. No, my view is that she was representing her client in

11 making these complaints.

12 Q. You see you were asked about that later the interview on

13 the very same page. Do you see a few lines down you are

14 asked:

15 "What is your view of her?

16 "Answer: She is a solicitor doing her job.

17 "Question: How do you feel about this complaint?

18 "Answer: I feel disgusted by this complaint. All

19 the complaints are made by her. I feel that she is

20 relying on the word of a terrorist in Colin Duffy, in my

21 view, a convicted terrorist. Mrs Nelson was not there,

22 the comments were not said."

23 So you would presumably criticise her at the very

24 least for accepting the word of her client in putting

25 forward these complaints?

 

 

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1 A. No, I wouldn't criticise her at all. She had a job to

2 do, representing her client.

3 Q. Why did you say that you were disgusted by this

4 complaint?

5 A. Because I was then and I still am disgusted by the

6 complaint.

7 Q. But some of them were made by her?

8 A. Yes, some of them were made by her, but she was getting

9 her point across on behalf of her client. So far as I

10 was concerned, she did not make a personal complaint

11 against me.

12 Q. Was she being naive in allowing herself to be used?

13 A. I can't comment on that.

14 Q. You have made a number of comments about the motivation

15 behind these complaints. Can't you comment about that

16 suggestion?

17 A. I can't comment about her naivety, no.

18 Q. Can you offer any comment about her own motivation?

19 A. No.

20 Q. But you are able to comment about the motivation of her

21 clients?

22 A. I believe so, yes.

23 Q. Where do you draw that distinction?

24 A. Because it was them I was talking to.

25 Q. Now, can I take it that at the time you conducted the

 

 

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1 interviews in February 1997 and June that year, you were

2 of the same opinion, namely that efforts were being

3 made, deliberate efforts were being made, to undermine

4 the RUC?

5 A. Yes, they were being made at that time, and successfully

6 made.

7 Q. Do you think that in any way influenced the way you

8 conducted these interviews?

9 A. Not at all.

10 Q. You didn't feel that what was effectively some form of

11 propaganda war being mounted gave permission to conduct

12 interviews in an aggressive or no holds barred way?

13 A. Not at all. I had been interviewing terrorists since

14 1980, and from 1980 to 1987 there was no complaints made

15 of this nature. I believe the complaints were made at

16 that time to discredit the Royal Ulster Constabulary,

17 successfully discredit the Royal Ulster Constabulary.

18 Q. And you would characterise all of the complaints we have

19 looked at so far as being motivated by that same tactic?

20 A. I would because they are totally untrue and unfounded.

21 Q. Now, it was the same solicitor putting them forward in

22 each and every case. Didn't that mean that in your mind

23 you regarded that solicitor as being connected with the

24 campaign?

25 A. Not at all.

 

 

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1 Q. You didn't regard her as being connected with the

2 Provisional IRA?

3 A. Not at all.

4 Q. Did you, as a result of that, treat her differently to

5 the way you treated other solicitors?

6 A. Not at all.

7 Q. Did other officers treat her differently to the way they

8 treated other officers, to your knowledge?

9 A. Not to the best of my knowledge.

10 Q. Can we move on in the history, please, to the

11 investigation conducted by Complaints and Discipline

12 Department, and in particular by the officer whose name

13 you will see on the cipher sheet, P146?

14 You deal with these investigations at paragraphs 53

15 to 58 of your statement and that's RNI-840-094 and

16 RNI-840-095. (displayed).

17 We have looked at some of the documents, the 17/3

18 forms at the beginning, for example. Can I ask you the

19 same question I asked you about the interviews? So far

20 as the interviews that took place during these

21 investigations, do you have any actual recollection of

22 the interviews?

23 A. I do not have a recollection of the interview per se,

24 but I have a recollection of making a statement and the

25 circumstances surrounding the making of the statement.

 

 

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1 Q. That is an issue you deal with in your statement,

2 isn't it?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Can we look at that, please and the background to it

5 because we can see the statement, I think, at

6 RNI-210-018 (displayed)?

7 A. Yes, that's my statement.

8 Q. It is dated 18 March, do you see?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And deals in particular with the Duffy allegations?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Thank you. Now, you say in your witness statement that

13 there was some difficulty trying to set up an interview

14 with P146?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. You were dealing with another case and you say that it

17 wasn't, therefore, easy for you to arrange a mutually

18 convenient time for the interview. Is that fair?

19 A. That's right. There was two or three attempts made to

20 formulate an interview, but I wasn't available or he

21 wasn't available.

22 Q. The interview which in fact took place was, I think, on

23 this day, on 18 March 1998, wasn't it?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And it's right, isn't it, at the beginning of the

 

 

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1 interview, which was about the Duffy case, I think, you

2 handed in this statement?

3 A. That's correct. If I recall, I had the statement made.

4 I had been doing other documents that day. I returned

5 to Lurgan station some time around 4 o'clock, I believe,

6 and was informed that P146 was in the station, so I made

7 myself available for interview. That is how it come

8 about.

9 Q. Just looking at this document here, is this the

10 statement in the form that you handed it in at the

11 beginning of the interview?

12 A. No, I believe it was handwritten.

13 Q. So do you know how it came to be typed up in this way?

14 A. Unless it was typed up for the Complaints and Discipline

15 file. I believe it was a handwritten one now. I may be

16 mistaken on that.

17 Q. As far as you can recall, did you write out in your own

18 handwriting your statement?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And as far as you can recall, is that what you

21 handed in?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. So this may then be a typed version, but it looks as

24 though it was signed on -- is it signed on the same day?

25 Is that right, 18 March?

 

 

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1 A. Yes, it would have been, but again, procedure is that

2 when these things are typed up, that the dates that they

3 are originally signed are put in. They are not

4 necessarily personally signed again; they could be

5 typewritten in.

6 Q. I see. So it is, as it were, a transcript of the

7 handwritten statement?

8 A. It has to be because at the bottom it says "46" on it.

9 That is obviously a page number from some sort of file.

10 Q. Yes, thank you very much.

11 So far as this statement is concerned, you say in

12 your witness statement to the Inquiry that you agreed

13 with him -- that is P146 -- that you would prepare

14 a statement?

15 A. Yes, he asked me to do so because we had missed each

16 other.

17 Q. So he asked you. Can you remember, was that on that day

18 or a few days before? When was that?

19 A. I believe it was some time before.

20 Q. And can I take it then that the problem having arisen as

21 to the difficulty of getting you in for interview

22 because of your other commitments led him to make the

23 suggestion, "Look, why don't you write down your

24 statement on this case and hand it in?"

25 A. Yes, the words in those days would have been, "Will you

 

 

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1 do a statement of evidence for me?" That is what it was

2 called.

3 Q. Anyway, that was the request he made to you?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Thank you. Now, going to the interview itself -- we

6 have so far got as far as you handing in the handwritten

7 version of this statement -- Geralyn McNally of the ICPC

8 was there in the interview, wasn't she, on 18 March?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And we have in the file P146's statement, which includes

11 his account of this interview, and that begins at

12 RNI-210-099 (displayed), the bottom of the page. Do you

13 see:

14 "I also saw ..."?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And as I said, this is an interview -- we can see from

17 the next page, RNI-210-100 (displayed) -- about the

18 Duffy allegations, not about the other matters, and we

19 will see that the second question is:

20 "I understand you have made a statement re this

21 matter dated 18 March."

22 Which was the very day of the interview:

23 "Do you wish to tender this for use at the

24 investigation?"

25 That is the statement that he had asked you to

 

 

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1 prepare?

2 A. That's correct.

3 Q. And you said, not surprisingly:

4 "I do, yes."

5 Then the interview carries on with a discussion

6 about the very passage in the interview notes that you

7 and I looked at yesterday:

8 "Are you proud of yourselves ..."

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Then over the page, there comes a moment where you are

11 asked another question about that same thing and you

12 simply say:

13 "I refer to the statement I handed in."

14 "Question: Are you denying these allegations?

15 "Answer: I refer to the statement I handed in.

16 "Question: You seem to suggest that Mr Duffy was

17 lying about this. Is that a correct interpretation?

18 "Answer: I refer to the statement I handed in.

19 "Question: Would you accept that to make such

20 comments would amount to a serious breach of discipline

21 vis-a-vis irregularity in interview procedures?

22 "Answer: I refer to the statement I handed in. The

23 comments were not made."

24 So to a number of these questions then, your answer

25 was, "Read the statement"?

 

 

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1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Now, in a sense that made the interview rather

3 difficult, didn't it, because he was trying to put the

4 allegations to you and --

5 A. At that point I didn't care how difficult the interview

6 became. I was being interviewed about false

7 allegations. I had prepared a statement covering my

8 point of views on it.

9 Q. And you weren't prepared to say any more in the

10 interview?

11 A. Obviously, at that stage, no. It is not very easy

12 sitting as a detective with no protection whatsoever and

13 having allegations of this sort made against you. They

14 are absolutely disgusting.

15 Q. But you understand that the investigating officer had

16 a job to do?

17 A. Yes, but it is also my right to sit and say nothing if

18 I wish.

19 Q. But you elected not to do that but to put in

20 a statement?

21 A. That's correct.

22 Q. But you were only prepared to answer so many questions

23 beyond what you had written in the statement; is that

24 fair?

25 A. It's a while since I've read this. It's how I felt at

 

 

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1 the time.

2 Q. Did that lead to the atmosphere in the interview

3 becoming rather difficult?

4 A. No, I don't believe so.

5 Q. Now, could we just look at another answer you gave later

6 in the interview? That is at the bottom of the

7 page RNI-210-102, the next page (displayed) --

8 A. Sorry, just before you go on, I would just like to point

9 out after that period that questions were asked and

10 answers given.

11 Q. Yes.

12 A. I just don't want it left there that I refused to

13 participate further in the interview.

14 Q. No, I wasn't suggesting that. But you did, for a number

15 of questions and answers, simply rely on your statement,

16 didn't you?

17 A. Yes, because I believed it was covered in the statement.

18 Q. Looking to the bottom of RNI-210-102 (displayed),

19 please, the question is:

20 "And for the record, are you referring to Mr Duffy's

21 alleged murder of two policemen?

22 "Answer:His involvement has not been proved and

23 legal action against him has ceased."

24 Because, of course, by this stage the DPP had

25 directed that those proceedings should end against him

 

 

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1 and he had been released, hadn't he? This

2 is March 1998?

3 A. That might well be the case.

4 Q. It was six months before the interview?

5 A. That might well be the case, but as far as I am

6 concerned, the investigation is still open and what

7 I said then I stick by now.

8 Q. That is what you meant, is it, by "legal action has not

9 ceased"?

10 A. Yes. I would like to point out we have a witness to the

11 murders of those two police officers who named Mr Duffy

12 and who has never been tested in a court of law. As far

13 as I am concerned, the investigation is still live.

14 Q. So whatever the decision of the DPP, it was in your view

15 the case that there was still a case against

16 Colin Duffy; is that right?

17 A. That's correct, yes.

18 Q. And do you think that affected your attitude to him and

19 his solicitor?

20 A. Not at all.

21 Q. Not at all?

22 A. Not at all.

23 Q. And you do not think that affected your reaction to

24 being investigated in relation to complaints made by

25 him?

 

 

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1 A. No.

2 Q. You don't think that there was a sense of frustration

3 and resentment at somebody who you believed had escaped

4 justice?

5 A. Frustration because there were false allegations made

6 against me, but resentment? No.

7 Q. Now, picking up on that comment, it is something to

8 which the Mulvihill team returned, and can we look at

9 the interview on that, please? It is back to file

10 RNI-226. The interview began at RNI-226-170

11 (displayed), if you remember, and this is at RNI-226-174

12 (displayed).

13 Now, by this stage it is November 1998 and you were

14 asked another series of questions about the fact that

15 charges were later discontinued. Do you see that?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. And then you said that the investigation was still

18 outstanding and he still featured in it?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. So can I take it that at this stage, in November 1998,

21 your attitude to the whole thing was exactly the same?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And notwithstanding the direction of the Director of

24 Public Prosecutions, in your view, that matter was still

25 open and unresolved?

 

 

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1 A. Yes, and still is today.

2 Q. Thank you. So far as this interview, going back to the

3 interview with P146, is concerned -- and that is the

4 interview on 18 March 1998 -- as you know, because you

5 have seen her statement, Geralyn McNally, who was

6 present at the interview, has made a number of comments

7 and criticisms about it. You are aware of them, aren't

8 you?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. She says first of all that you were late for the

11 interview. Is that right?

12 A. I believe so, but that comment is wrong because there

13 was no interview arranged. It was by chance that I was

14 there that day.

15 Q. So you didn't expect to be interviewed that day; is that

16 right?

17 A. No, because I had made a statement and it was lying on

18 my desk for P146 to collect by arrangement.

19 Q. So did you think that once you put in the prepared

20 statement there would be no interview at all on those

21 allegations?

22 A. No, I knew there would be an interview at some stage or

23 another.

24 Q. But you didn't expect it that day?

25 A. No.

 

 

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1 Q. Thank you.

2 A. So her point was wrong.

3 Q. Now, so far as the notes, the interview notes with

4 Colin Duffy, did you have them with you at the start of

5 the interview, can you remember?

6 A. The interview with P146?

7 Q. Yes.

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

9 Q. Would that be usual practice or do you expect the

10 Complaints and Discipline Officer to bring them with

11 him?

12 A. It would be usual practice that he would have them.

13 I certainly wouldn't have them.

14 Q. Now, as you know, Geralyn McNally also says that she

15 believed you had been drinking before you came to the

16 interview. Is that correct?

17 A. No, I hadn't been drinking, no.

18 Q. You hadn't?

19 A. No.

20 Q. You are sure?

21 A. I am positive.

22 Q. You weren't in any sense the worse for alcohol in that

23 interview?

24 A. Absolutely not. I was working.

25 Q. And she describes your attitude during the interview as

 

 

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1 "hostile and aggressive". Is that a fair description?

2 A. No, I don't believe I was hostile or aggressive. People

3 might take me the wrong way at times, but I certainly

4 wouldn't believe myself to be hostile or aggressive.

5 Q. Had you been drinking before a Complaints and Discipline

6 interview, it would have been a serious matter,

7 wouldn't it?

8 A. I'm not sure that it would.

9 Q. So that was something you didn't regard as being

10 particularly important one way or the other?

11 A. What's that?

12 Q. Drinking before a Complaints and Discipline interview?

13 A. Number one, I wasn't drinking, and number two, I was not

14 expecting an interview on that date.

15 Q. Does that mean that you weren't expecting to present

16 yourself to P146?

17 A. Yes, I already said that. I was not expecting an

18 interview that day. It was just by chance, before

19 I went home, that I learned he was in the police station

20 and I presented myself for interview.

21 Q. So you weren't prepared, as it were, for the interview.

22 Can I ask you, are you sure that during the course

23 of that afternoon you hadn't been drinking?

24 A. I'm positive.

25 Q. So far as the other complaints are concerned, they took

 

 

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1 place on the next day. So, again, you may have no

2 recollection of this, but presumably once you had had

3 this interview it was agreed that you would have the

4 interviews in relation to the other complaints from P146

5 on 19 March; is that right?

6 A. I can't recall that. It may well be because, as

7 I remember, it was coming near five o'clock.

8 Q. So far as they are concerned, we can see P146's

9 statement at RNI-210-039 (displayed) and the interviews

10 in relation to these three matters go on until

11 RNI-210-043 (displayed). I would just like to show you

12 them very quickly, please. At the bottom of RNI-210-039

13 (displayed), you see:

14 "I saw DC ..."

15 Then your cipher. Then there is a very long section

16 on the next page, RNI-210-040 (displayed), which

17 consists of the recital of the complaint and the caution

18 and, as it were, the formalities, and then the question

19 at the bottom of the page:

20 "You have seen the allegations?

21 "Answer: I totally deny the allegations.

22 "Question: Did you interview him?"

23 You see on the next page at the top.

24 "Answer: If that is what the record shows.

25 "Question: Anything else you wish to say?

 

 

24


1 "Answer: It is not in my nature to make the

2 comments referred to in the hearsay evidence of

3 Rosemary Nelson, solicitor. Certainly no one in my

4 presence said those things."

5 That looks as though in relation to this

6 allegation -- that is the allegation made by

7 Anthony Simmons -- that is the end of the interview?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Can I just ask you to look at the answer at the top of

10 the page which we have on the screen? There you make

11 a reference to the hearsay evidence of Rosemary Nelson,

12 solicitor?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Now, that is the sort of comment you were making in

15 relation to the Duffy complaints in the passages in the

16 Mulvihill interviews we looked at?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. So this is a similar situation in your view, is it?

19 A. Of course, yes.

20 Q. Where the solicitor is putting forward on behalf of the

21 her client complaints which you believe were fabricated

22 and which related to matters which she had not herself

23 heard?

24 A. Yes, which I don't believe were fabricated, I know were

25 fabricated.

 

 

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1 Q. You know were fabricated?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. But it is a similar situation, is it?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. She was relying on hearsay evidence in relation to what

6 were actually fabricated allegations?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Now, in relation to the next matter, again, there is

9 a very, very, very long introduction on page RNI-210-041

10 (displayed), which is a precursor to a very short

11 interview on RNI-210-042. At the top of RNI-210-042

12 (displayed), please. You totally deny the allegations:

13 "I don't believe any of them refer to me.

14 "Question: Anything else you wish to say?

15 "Answer: No.

16 "Question: Did any of your colleagues say these

17 things ..."

18 "Answer: At no time did I or anyone else in my

19 presence make any such comment."

20 Can I ask you whether you can recall, was

21 Geralyn McNally present in any of these interviews?

22 A. I can't recall.

23 Q. If we look at the notes, for instance, flicking back to

24 RNI-210-039 (displayed), there is certainly no reference

25 to her there in the sort of introductory passage. We

 

 

26


1 know she was there the day before. Any recollection of

2 that?

3 A. I have no recollection, no.

4 Q. Would it be safe to rely on the notes?

5 A. Yes, I would say so, yes.

6 Q. Thank you.

7 Then the third of these interviews, which is in

8 relation to the Barry Toman case, begins at RNI-210-042

9 (displayed) with, again, a massive introduction, and

10 then a slightly longer interview we can see at

11 RNI-210-043 (displayed).

12 Now, here you take the numbered paragraphs of the

13 statement in your long answer. The numbered paragraphs,

14 do you remember, from that 17/3 form we looked at

15 yesterday?

16 A. Yes, there was a lot of different complaints.

17 Q. Exactly. And you give a specific answer or comment in

18 relation to each paragraph. Can you remember any

19 particular reason why you were much more forthcoming

20 about this complaint?

21 A. No, I don't think -- well, this is the bit that

22 I referred to yesterday, where this was the interview

23 where I would get my chance to give my views.

24 Q. Exactly.

25 A. Different from whenever the 17/3s were served.

 

 

27


1 Q. Yes, and this was a case in which you took it?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. But you didn't, as we have seen, in relation to the two

4 previous short interviews?

5 A. I believe I did.

6 Q. Well, let's look back at them. The one before is at

7 RNI-210-042 (displayed), that is it at the top of the

8 page.

9 A. Well, my answer to the allegation:

10 "I totally deny all the allegations and I don't

11 believe any of them refer to me."

12 Q. But you do not give any of the detailed comment that you

13 gave in relation to the Barry Toman case, did you?

14 A. No, perhaps the Toman case -- in fact, it was more

15 involved in the sense that there was a number of

16 complaints made on the one 17/3, some of which didn't

17 refer to me, which had to be explained.

18 Q. Indeed. You told us yesterday that you said, "Nothing

19 to say" when served with the 17/3 form because you knew

20 you would have your chance to set out your answer.

21 All I'm suggesting to you is in relation to these

22 two earlier short interviews, it didn't take long to

23 deliver your answer, did it?

24 A. No.

25 Q. You didn't actually take it much further than you had

 

 

28


1 already done in response to the 17/3 form?

2 A. No. And, again, I would say that is my right.

3 Q. So far as you are concerned -- again, can we rely on the

4 notes here? That these are a full note of the interview

5 that took place between you and P146?

6 A. I would have to, yes, but they are a typed copy.

7 I assume they are a certified typed copy. Again, the

8 notes at this time would have been handwritten.

9 Q. Indeed, but you are not in a position from your own

10 recollection to suggest, for example, that when we look

11 at RNI-210-042 at the top that there might have been all

12 sorts of other questions and answers given?

13 A. I don't believe there was, no.

14 Q. We saw in your Mulvihill interviews -- and we have been

15 through the passages together in some detail -- that

16 when you had the complaints put to you, both the Duffy

17 complaints and these three complaints, you gave your

18 view about the motivation behind them?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. That's not something you say, is it, in any of these

21 interviews? You don't say that they have been put

22 forward deliberately as a campaign to undermine the RUC?

23 A. No, not in any of these ones here.

24 Q. Any particular reason for that distinction?

25 A. No, I chose obviously not to say it at the time.

 

 

29


1 Q. Can you remember why that was?

2 A. No, I can't, no.

3 Q. Just finally in relation to these interview notes,

4 which, so far as the questions and answers are

5 concerned, begin at RNI-210-040 (displayed), if we can

6 just look at the bottom of that page, please, as an

7 example, you say fairly that you don't have any specific

8 recollection of the interviews themselves and that I

9 think you were prepared to accept that our best guide

10 was the notes.

11 If that's right, it looks, doesn't it, as though

12 what happened was that you were asked a very, very

13 limited number of questions by P146, to which you gave

14 an answer?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. You didn't have pre-prepared statement with you on this

17 occasion, did you?

18 A. No, I answered the questions asked.

19 Q. Was there any particular reason why you didn't have a

20 pre-prepared statement for these complaints in the way

21 that you had for the Duffy one of the day before?

22 A. No. As I say, the Duffy ones the day before was

23 somewhat out of context. It had never happened to me

24 before in relation to complaints, that I was asked to

25 make a statement because we had kept missing before.

 

 

30


1 That was a rarity.

2 Q. But when you had that conversation with him, he didn't

3 say, "And can you prepare one for the other complaints

4 as well"?

5 A. No, he didn't. Obviously, as you say, this interview

6 was arranged on that afternoon for the next day.

7 Q. Now, so far as the Mulvihill interviews are concerned,

8 because that was the next stage of this saga, we have

9 looked at both of the --

10 A. The Mulvihill was a totally separate stage.

11 Q. Indeed.

12 A. This stage was brought to an end, in that obviously

13 a file was submitted and no charges were brought.

14 Q. Yes. It is a bit more complicated than that. The

15 history is very complicated, but suffice it to say in

16 time that the Mulvihill interviews and investigation

17 came after the P146 investigation?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. And so far as the detail as to how that happened,

20 I assume you are not aware of any of that?

21 A. No.

22 Q. No. Just looking at the interviews in general, they

23 are, both of them, as I have already said, long

24 interviews, many pages of what is now typed script,

25 aren't they?

 

 

31


1 A. I believe so, yes.

2 Q. They are much, much longer interviews than any of the

3 four conducted by P146 that we have just been

4 looking at?

5 A. I can't recall in length how long it took, the

6 interviews, no.

7 Q. Can you remember that they were rather more detailed

8 than the questions you had been asked by P146?

9 A. Yes, they probably were, yes.

10 Q. I mean, if we look, for example, RNI-227-160 together

11 (displayed), that interview on the 11th, which begins at

12 1.47, ended at 2.28?

13 A. 41 minutes.

14 Q. 40 minutes. Whereas the others, it looks to me, can't

15 have taken more than about two or three minutes with

16 those questions and answers, maybe five?

17 A. I would have thought that they were longer than that,

18 but I can't comment.

19 Q. And we can see also in the questions and answers as

20 recorded by the Mulvihill team that you did answer their

21 questions and, indeed, gave pretty full answers to

22 a number of questions and the thing was gone into in

23 each case in much more detail?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Was there any particular reason why in those interviews

 

 

32


1 you were rather more forthcoming? Was it simply that

2 you were asked a lot more questions?

3 A. You can only answer the questions that are asked of you.

4 Q. Now, some three weeks after the interviews that we have

5 looked at with Colin Duffy, you were involved, weren't

6 you, in interviewing Trevor McKeown?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. And at the time you were interviewing him, as I

9 understand it, he was being held on suspicion of what

10 was then the attempted murder of Bernadette Martin?

11 A. That's correct, yes.

12 Q. During, as I understand it, perhaps the course of the

13 investigation, she very unfortunately died and the

14 matter then became a murder enquiry, didn't it?

15 A. It did, yes.

16 Q. He was ultimately convicted, I think, in 1999, wasn't

17 he, and sentenced to life imprisonment?

18 A. That's correct. Actually, the day that Rosemary Nelson

19 was blown up, he was convicted.

20 Q. I was going to ask you that. That is what you say in

21 your statement. So far as we can see, that's the day

22 when the trial began, 15 March 1999. We don't think he

23 was convicted until June. Could that be right?

24 A. No, I can't remember whether he pleaded guilty at the

25 end or not. It may have been later that he was

 

 

33


1 sentenced, but I believe it was the same day.

2 Q. So far as the interviews are concerned -- and that is

3 the matter you deal with in your statement at

4 paragraphs 66 to 68, so you have got that in front of

5 you on the screen. As I understand it, again, at this

6 stage -- this is the middle of July 1997 -- you were

7 partnered in interviewing by DC Walker. Is that

8 correct?

9 A. That's correct, yes.

10 Q. And, again, I hope you will take it from me, in the

11 custody records it looks as though there were three

12 teams interviewing, of which your team was one?

13 A. Yes, I take your word on that.

14 Q. Thank you. Again, any specific recollection of these

15 interviews?

16 A. No.

17 Q. Can you remember how many you were involved in?

18 A. No.

19 Q. Well, it looks to us from the records as though it may

20 have been six over three days at Gough Barracks. Does

21 that sound as though it might be right?

22 A. Yes, that sounds right, yes.

23 Q. In the files that we have, there are notes of various

24 interviews, and the first I would like to look at with

25 you, please, is on the day of his arrest, which is

 

 

34


1 15 July and we can see it at RNI-405-134 (displayed).

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Do you see the time it begins is 21.19? It doesn't give

4 an end time, I think probably because there was a second

5 book?

6 A. That's correct.

7 Q. And in fact, if I can just ask that RNI-405-146 be put

8 up on the screen, please (displayed), we can see the

9 second book there and the actual end time, which is

10 23.21?

11 A. That's correct.

12 Q. Thank you. Can we go back to RNI-405-134 (displayed),

13 please. Is that your handwriting?

14 A. It is, yes.

15 Q. Yes, thank you. Now, as far as the custody record goes,

16 it looks as though this was the first interview that you

17 and your interviewing partner had conducted with

18 Trevor McKeown. Are you able to help me about that?

19 A. It would appear to be because we introduced ourselves to

20 him.

21 Q. Indeed. I'll just show you the custody record at

22 RNI-405-111 (displayed), and there at the very bottom of

23 the page -- the writing isn't very clear -- do you see

24 the penultimate entry is the one referring to DC Walker

25 and you?

 

 

35


1 A. Yes.

2 Q. And then at the bottom, the very bottom, it gives the

3 time when the interview terminated?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Thank you. You say that at the beginning of the

6 interview you have noted that you introduced yourselves,

7 and we can see that at RNI-405-134 (displayed). Did you

8 actually know him?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And he knew you?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. So in a sense, this was a formality rather than

13 something that was necessary?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. Can I ask you about the notes, please? As far as you

16 are able to recall, would this have followed your usual

17 practice, whereby even though you were the scribe in

18 this case, you would also have been asking questions

19 during the interview?

20 A. Yes, that's the norm, yes.

21 Q. And can I take it also from you that it is your position

22 that the notes are a verbatim account of what was said

23 during that interview?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Now, again, I would like to ask you a specific question

 

 

36


1 about these notes although it picks up on a point we

2 touched on yesterday. This is a case where you -- in

3 the interview -- had a suspect who did answer questions?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. And I'll just show you the first of those, please, at

6 RNI-405-135 (displayed), right at the beginning of the

7 interview.

8 We have seen so many notes where the answer is "no

9 reply", and look at the answer there; it is an extremely

10 long answer. In fact, it goes on to RNI-405-137. Will

11 you take it from me that for the rest of the interview

12 there were answers one way or another to the questions

13 you were posing to him?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. So this was not an interview, therefore, was it, where

16 you had a mute suspect?

17 A. No.

18 Q. Who simply wasn't responding?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Can you look, with that in mind, please, then at

21 RNI-405-153 (displayed) because here at the very bottom

22 of the page, after many pages -- we are now into the

23 second book, page 8 -- many pages of questions and

24 answers, you say in your handwriting:

25 "We continued to question Trevor McKeown along these

 

 

37


1 lines, but his position remained the same."

2 So this is one of these summaries, isn't it?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. That we with discussed yesterday?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. You remember you explained yesterday the summary was

7 something that you used in interview noting, where

8 effectively you were going over the same ground again?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. When I asked you the questions about it yesterday, of

11 course, we were looking at interviews, weren't we, where

12 there was no reply at all?

13 A. That's correct, yes.

14 Q. This is a very different case, isn't it?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And presumably everything that is said by a suspect in

17 an attempted murder or, as it became, a murder case is

18 potentially of significance, isn't it?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. So up to this point you had put questions and had

21 answers. Why was it in this case then that you felt

22 able to summarise any part of this interview?

23 A. Because we put a number of the same questions to him and

24 the same answers were forthcoming. And in my view,

25 there was no point in writing them all out again. Had

 

 

38


1 there been something new, a note would have been taken

2 of it.

3 Q. Are you able to say now how much, in terms of time, of

4 the interview those two and a half lines actually

5 summarise?

6 A. No, but I presume it would be very little, but no, I

7 can't say for certain.

8 Q. You can't?

9 A. No.

10 Q. So is it possible that they might be a summary of what

11 would otherwise have been pages of questions and

12 answers?

13 A. They could be. I don't believe so, but yes, they could

14 be, on the other hand, yes.

15 Q. Now, in this particular case there is another variation

16 to the pattern we looked a together yesterday --

17 A. The scale, if you want to call that, of interviewing,

18 there is no variations -- there is no pattern. It is

19 something that changes from day to day, from hour to

20 hour, from minute to minute. There is no pattern, as

21 you call it. It is just the way things turn out in

22 a small room with two detectives and a suspect.

23 Q. Yes. We looked yesterday, if you remember --

24 A. Yes, but you used the word "pattern". There is no

25 pattern in interviewing.

 

 

39


1 Q. There was a pattern, surely, yesterday of interviewees

2 who simply refused to answer any of your questions?

3 A. Yes, which is their right.

4 Q. I think you said it was a pretty common experience?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Now, here we are looking at an interview of a very

7 different kind, aren't we?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. It doesn't fit into that pattern, does it?

10 A. No, it doesn't. I don't think the word "pattern" is

11 right, but yes, it is different.

12 Q. What we looked at yesterday were a number of examples

13 where an offer was made to read over the interview notes

14 and the offer was declined?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Here, we have a different situation -- I won't use the

17 word "pattern" -- a different situation:

18 "Notes read over to him. He requested to read them.

19 Read them over and signed each page."

20 Then this sentence:

21 "He challenged a reply on page 7, first booklet.

22 Change made, initialled by him."

23 We can see the change at RNI-405-140 (displayed).

24 Do you see? About six lines up?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

40


1 Q. And those are his initials, in fact twice, "TM"?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. So this is a suspect then who took the opportunity, (a),

4 and, indeed, challenged one of the one of the answers

5 recorded. You presumably then decided to allow his

6 amendment?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. And it was recorded and initialled in this way?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Thank you. Now, during the course of this interview,

11 where we have now seen he made an amendment to the

12 notes, can you recall any complaint about the conduct of

13 the interview or other things that had been said in it

14 being made by this suspect, Trevor McKeown?

15 A. No.

16 Q. Can we look at the second lot of notes in relation to

17 your interviewing of him, please, and they are at

18 RNI-405-158 (displayed), the next day?

19 Can I take it that this is DC Walker's handwriting?

20 A. That's correct, yes.

21 Q. We see the signature of the interviewee at the bottom of

22 the page?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. This one is in the morning, the next morning, 10.54.

25 So far as this interview is concerned, if we look at

 

 

41


1 the substance of it, he says at the bottom of

2 RNI-405-159 (displayed):

3 "I have had two long interviews yesterday. I have

4 already answered ..."

5 I think that is possibly "these questions". Then I

6 think one of you intervenes to say:

7 "Explained to subject that it was our intention to

8 again go over the story in more detail and bearing in

9 mind ..."

10 Then over the page, the wording of the caution,

11 et cetera. Then you carry on with questions on

12 RNI-405-160 (displayed); do you see?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. But it looks as though for the rest the interview, which

15 goes all the way to RNI-405-166, before the book is used

16 up, he just said:

17 "No reply"?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Can you remember now what might explain his change of

20 tack in this second interview?

21 A. Other than if he had a consultation with his solicitor

22 that morning who perhaps told him to say nothing.

23 Again, I have no recollection of that. But no, I can't

24 explain as to why he suddenly dried up.

25 Q. Now, the interview continues at RNI-405-170 (displayed)

 

 

42


1 with the second book, and goes on until RNI-405-173

2 (displayed).

3 Here, it is mostly "no reply" and then one or two

4 answers on RNI-405-172 and RNI-405-173 (displayed), and

5 in particular there are some questions about his

6 washing, you see, at RNI-405-173 (displayed). Do you

7 see that?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Thank you.

10 Again, can I ask you, do you recall any complaint

11 being expressed by him during the course of this

12 interview?

13 A. No.

14 Q. Or during the course of any other of the interviews you

15 conducted with McKeown in July 1997?

16 A. No.

17 Q. Can I just finally show you that at the end of this

18 interview:

19 "Notes read to subject. He agreed they were an

20 accurate record of interview and signed each page"?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. So no amendments proposed, it seems, on this occasion?

23 A. That would appear to be the case, yes.

24 Q. There was a complaint made by Trevor McKeown about an

25 interview conducted later on this day, on the 16th,

 

 

43


1 wasn't there?

2 A. I can't recall.

3 Q. You can't recall? Well, can you recall none of the

4 details of it?

5 A. No. Does it refer to me?

6 Q. Yes, it does.

7 A. No, I don't recall it.

8 Q. Right, okay. Can we look at his -- that is

9 Trevor McKeown's -- statement, at RNI-405-245, please

10 (displayed). Do you see?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And it is a complaint about you specifically and it is

13 a complaint about the conduct of an interview, and we

14 can see what he is saying for ourselves?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. It looks from the custody record as though this matter

17 was raised during the course of the ongoing interviews.

18 Do you have any recollection of that?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Can we look together, please, at that record and see if

21 it assists with your recollection? It is at

22 RNI-405-115 (displayed).

23 You mentioned earlier the question of a solicitor's

24 consultation. Here, we can see in fact there are two

25 references to that, the first at the top of the page.

 

 

44


1 Do you see?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. At 14.47, and then later at 19.34?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. With the solicitor who is also ciphered in this

6 document. Then you can see, I hope, at 20.46, another

7 interview is to begin and it is you again and DC Walker.

8 Do you see that?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Right at the bottom of that page -- this is in the

11 custody record, which I appreciate you wouldn't have

12 compiled, but do you see somebody has written:

13 "Prisoner standing up during interview ..."

14 Turn the page, please, to RNI-405-166 (displayed):

15 "... and walking back and forward in interview

16 room."

17 Then 21.45:

18 "Prisoner sat down."

19 Then, I think, 22.46:

20 "Prisoner standing, sat down after two minutes"?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Then we come to the end of the interview. We saw the

23 time earlier, and it looks as though the interview came

24 to an end.

25 Just a few lines down after that, do you see in

 

 

45


1 capitals the word "complaint"?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. "23.10 complaint. He spoke to prisoner at his request.

4 He alleged minor assault by interviewing detectives and

5 that detectives had recorded incorrect details in

6 notes."

7 Presumably you were made aware of the fact that

8 a complaint had been made about your conduct with

9 DC Walker of the interview at the time?

10 A. No, it would probably have been the next morning during

11 the briefing. I can't recall, but I will have gone home

12 at that stage. It wouldn't have been on that evening.

13 Possibly the next morning. I can't recall it.

14 Q. Do you recall what happened? In other words,

15 specifically do you recall whether there was any change

16 in the conduct of the interviews after that?

17 A. No, I cannot, no.

18 Q. Because you continued to interview, as far as we can see

19 from the custody record?

20 A. That's correct, yes.

21 Q. Despite the fact that the complaint had been made?

22 A. Yes, I would have thought whoever had been -- I don't

23 know whether cameras were there or not -- whoever had

24 been watching the interview, had there been an assault,

25 presumably he would have seen it.

 

 

46


1 Q. That was a question I was going to ask you: how was he

2 able to see that the prisoner was standing up and

3 walking backwards and forwards?

4 A. In 1998 there may have been cameras put into the

5 interview room.

6 Q. 1997 this is, don't forget, July.

7 A. 1997. I can't recall whether there was not. There was

8 a spy hole in the door, of course, which he could use.

9 Q. It looks as though somebody anyway, and it certainly

10 wasn't you or DC Walker, was actually observing or able

11 to observe what was going on in the room?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. Can you help as to how that was?

14 A. As I said, either by camera or by using the spy hole on

15 the door. It is always an uniformed officer.

16 Q. We can see the notes of this interview at RNI-405-182

17 (displayed). In the evening it is, 8.46. It goes on

18 for two hours. The notes in fact only last until

19 RNI-405-185, so it is rather under three and a half

20 pages for those two hours. After the caution at

21 RNI-405-183 (displayed), he says, as his third answer:

22 "I have nothing further to add from last night."

23 You then move into your summary:

24 "We continued to question the subject."

25 Do you see there is then a note three lines down:

 

 

47


1 "He then stood up and started to pace up and down

2 the interview room. He still refused to speak or answer

3 any questions."

4 Do you see that?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. "The subject then stood with his back to interviewers

7 and looked out the window. He still refused to answer

8 any questions. He then started again to pace up and

9 down."

10 Turning over the page, it looks as though there was

11 no reply to just a few questions and more pacing up and

12 down. Then the interview is recorded as ending, as I

13 say, two hours later, at 22 -- I think it is 48 or 49,

14 possibly.

15 So based on the rather short notes, the pacing up

16 and down and the silence must have taken quite a long

17 time?

18 A. Yes, obviously the period of the interview.

19 Q. And you think, do you, that the short summaries you

20 give, for example, on RNI-405-184, would have covered a

21 whole load of questions and answers, or questions and

22 refusals to reply?

23 A. Yes. Again, these aren't my notes.

24 Q. These are DC Walker's notes, aren't they?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

48


1 Q. But was it his practice, as far as you were aware,

2 simply not to write down questions put and answers

3 given?

4 A. I can't remember certainly whether it was his practice

5 or not. I don't know. But as I say, I have no real

6 recollection of this interview, as to why it was done in

7 this form. Obviously because he wasn't answering any

8 questions put to him, it was generalised, but ... it was

9 DC Walker took the note.

10 Q. But anyway, we have seen together now -- I hope it has

11 helped your memory -- that it was after this interview

12 that a specific complaint was made in relation to you

13 and DC Walker and the way the interview had been

14 conducted?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. What we don't find in the custody record is a complaint

17 or other reference to the more serious allegations that

18 emerged in 2003, do we?

19 A. No.

20 Q. But those are the allegations with which the Inquiry is

21 concerned?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And I know you have seen material, including this sort

24 of material, about them, but I would like to move on to

25 them now?

 

 

49


1 A. Just before you do, I would have thought if Mr McKeown

2 had been making complaints at that time that he would

3 also have mentioned these more serious things at that

4 time when they were fresh in his mind.

5 Q. Can you think of any reason why he might not have done

6 that?

7 A. Yes, a quite simple reason.

8 Q. Would you like to give it?

9 A. Because it never happened.

10 Q. When were you first aware that the more serious

11 allegations were being made against you?

12 A. I'm not sure whether I read it in the Sunday papers, but

13 certainly when I was contacted by DCS Provoost.

14 Q. Yes, which was shortly thereafter, wasn't it, shortly

15 after the publication in the News of the World?

16 A. I believe so, yes.

17 Q. But as far as you are concerned, you had no inclination

18 or no indication that such an allegation was being made

19 to that point?

20 A. Absolutely not.

21 Q. Which is, by then, six years later?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Presumably in relation to the other matter, the

24 relatively minor complaint, that, as far as you can

25 recall, went through the normal process, and can you

 

 

50


1 remember what the result was?

2 A. There was no charge referred. I presume it went through

3 the normal process. I have no recollection of that.

4 Q. Thank you.

5 A. Whether I had been notified of the result of it or not,

6 even.

7 Q. As you are aware, because you deal with it in your

8 statement -- and we have it on the screen -- the

9 allegation made is that in the course of an interview

10 involving you, the question or the matter of

11 Rosemary Nelson was raised in the interview?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And the allegation is that you said:

14 "Why the fuck don't you shoot Rosemary Nelson

15 instead of an 18-year old girl?"

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Did you utter those words in the course of your

18 interviews of Trevor McKeown?

19 A. No.

20 Q. Did you hear words of that kind being used in the

21 interviews in which you were present?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Did you hear words of that kind being used outside the

24 context of those interviews?

25 A. No.

 

 

51


1 Q. Did you ask Trevor McKeown:

2 "Would you shoot her, Trevor? Would you?"

3 A. I did not.

4 Q. Did you ask any questions which were of a similar

5 nature?

6 A. No.

7 Q. Did you hear such questions being put to him?

8 A. No.

9 Q. Did you hear any words used in the interview which might

10 have been misunderstood or mistaken for those sorts of

11 comments or questions?

12 A. No, not in my recollection. Just thinking there, when

13 you mentioned, "Did you shoot her, Trevor? Did you

14 shoot her?" I don't know whether those words were

15 mentioned to him relating to the murder he is being

16 questioned about. No, certainly none of those words

17 were said --

18 Q. Sorry to interrupt. So I have got this clear, you think

19 words might have been used but in relation to the Martin

20 murder?

21 A. No, I'm only putting forward a suggestion, if that was

22 the case, but I have no -- no, I have no recollection.

23 Certainly nothing was mentioned in relation to

24 Rosemary Nelson.

25 Q. That's the next question I had to ask you: did either

 

 

52


1 you or DC Walker mention Rosemary Nelson at any point

2 during these interviews?

3 A. Definitely not. We had a suspect we were questioning

4 about a murder. You know, why would we mention

5 something outside of what we were investigating and

6 questioning him about? It is totally ridiculous.

7 Q. Can you think of any reason why you might have mentioned

8 her name in the course of those interviews?

9 A. None. There would be no reason to mention her name.

10 Q. We know that the complaints made in relation to, amongst

11 others, your conduct of the Colin Duffy interviews had

12 surfaced some three weeks before that and you have given

13 us your views about Colin Duffy. Might that have been

14 a reason to make remarks of this kind during the

15 interviews of Trevor McKeown?

16 A. No remarks of this kind were made.

17 Q. When we looked earlier at the other four complaints, the

18 Duffy complaints and the other three -- and we discussed

19 this earlier today as well as yesterday -- you gave your

20 view as to why they were being put forward. Do you

21 remember?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. As an attempt by them to discredit and undermine the

24 RUC?

25 A. I couldn't think of what else it could be.

 

 

53


1 Q. Now, you have also made clear your view where that sort

2 of campaign would have been launched and the sort of

3 people you believe you were dealing with, namely members

4 of the Provisional IRA or their supporters?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Plainly, this suspect was on the other side of the

7 conflict, if I can put it that way?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. So one couldn't ascribe to him, could one, the same

10 motivation?

11 A. No.

12 Q. He came from a diametrically opposed part of the

13 political landscape?

14 A. That's correct, yes.

15 Q. You regarded him presumably, if anything, as being

16 a Loyalist terrorist rather than a Republican one?

17 A. Most definitely, yes.

18 Q. And yet here he is, just three weeks after the Duffy

19 interviews, again, saying in relation to interviews that

20 took place at that time, that comments -- in this case,

21 threatening, inciting comments -- were made concerning

22 the same person, namely Rosemary Nelson?

23 A. That's correct.

24 Q. And that simply cannot be explained away, can it, as

25 part of a Republican campaign?

 

 

54


1 A. No.

2 Q. Can you give the Inquiry your view about what you think

3 the motivation for this allegation is?

4 A. All I can think of at the time was his brother was going

5 through trial in relation to another murder in Lurgan.

6 I'm not sure whether he had been convicted at that stage

7 or not. I think he had and was considering an appeal,

8 and the only reason that come into my head at the time

9 was it may have something to do with that, to try and

10 help his brother at some stage.

11 Q. I think that is a suggestion you also make in your

12 statement, isn't it? Do you see in RNI-840-167

13 (displayed) there, as we have got it on the screen?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. What I wanted to be clear about in my mind is how could

16 it have been of any assistance to his brother's appeal

17 for Trevor McKeown to make these allegations about you?

18 A. I don't know why Trevor McKeown made the allegations.

19 As I said, I can only presume why, and that is

20 the reason I come up with at the time.

21 I also interviewed his brother in relation to the

22 murder of Michael McGoldrick in Lurgan, and unless it

23 was a case to try and discredit myself, to help him at

24 his appeal.

25 Q. Now, you also say that the allegation was made to muddy

 

 

55


1 the waters. Do you see that?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. And you refer there to throwing dirt at the police. Do

4 you see that in the previous sentence?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. If you look back in your statement to paragraph 52 at

7 page RNI-840-094 (displayed) in the context of the

8 Colin Duffy complaint, you use a very, very similar

9 expression in the fourth line:

10 "He ..."

11 That is in this case Mr Duffy:

12 "... was trying to throw as much dirt as he could

13 before his murder trial"?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. So that is your view, is it, in relation to these two

16 complaints from diametrically opposed places: that they

17 were intended to muddy the waters and throw dirt at the

18 police?

19 A. It was the only explanation I could come up with at the

20 time. As I said, you would have to ask the people

21 concerned why they made the false allegations. I can't

22 speak for them.

23 Q. Sir, would that be a convenient moment?

24 THE CHAIRMAN: Yes. Just one question: in 2003, McKeown's

25 brother had been convicted -- is this right? -- of

 

 

56


1 a murder of somebody in Lurgan?

2 A. That's correct, sir.

3 THE CHAIRMAN: It was not, am I right in thinking, the

4 McGoldrick murder?

5 A. It was the McGoldrick murder.

6 THE CHAIRMAN: It was the McGoldrick murder?

7 A. Yes.

8 THE CHAIRMAN: So he was convicted of the McGoldrick murder

9 in 2003.

10 A. Some time before that, yes.

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Then there was an appeal by the brother.

12 A. I believe he was making an appeal. I don't know whether

13 that has gone ahead or not.

14 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

15 Would you, please, escort the witness out. Before

16 the witness leaves, Mr [name redacted], would you please

17 confirm that all the cameras have been switched off?

18 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they have.

19 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

20 We will adjourn for quarter of an hour until ten to.

21 (11.35 am)

22 (Short break)

23 (11.50 am)

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

25 with you, please, before the witness comes in?

 

 

57


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

2 the key secured?

3 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

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

5 screen closed?

6 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

7 THE CHAIRMAN: Are the technical support screens in place

8 and securely fastened?

9 MR CURRANS: Yes, sir.

10 THE CHAIRMAN: Is anyone other than inquiry personnel and

11 Participants' legal representatives seated in the body

12 of this chamber?

13 MR CURRANS: No, sir.

14 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr [name redacted] can you confirm, please, that

15 the two witness cameras have been switched off and

16 shrouded?

17 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they have.

18 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. All the other cameras have been

19 switched off?

20 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they have.

21 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. Bring the witness in, please.

22 The cameras on the Panel, Inquiry personnel and the

23 Full Participants' legal representatives may now be

24 switched back on.

25 Yes, Mr Phillips?

 

 

58


1 MR PHILLIPS: Now, can we have back on the screen, please,

2 your statement at RNI-840-097 (displayed) because we

3 were discussing earlier what possible motivation there

4 might have been for Trevor McKeown to make this very

5 serious allegation. You said to me earlier that you

6 thought there might be a connection between that and his

7 brother's appeal, and that's something you mention in

8 paragraph 67.

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. As I understand it, he, Clifford McKeown, was convicted

11 for the murder you have mentioned on the basis of what

12 he had said to a journalist; isn't that right?

13 A. That's correct, yes.

14 Q. Not on the basis of any admission he had made to the

15 police?

16 A. No.

17 Q. Can you help me then, because you have raised this

18 question, how would it possibly have assisted his

19 brother's appeal for Trevor McKeown to make this

20 allegation against you?

21 A. I don't know what his grounds for appeal would have

22 been, but certainly had he been able to put -- bad name

23 me or any other interviewing officers, that would be

24 another arm in his quest.

25 Q. So you think it was an attempt to bad mouth you, as

 

 

59


1 somebody who had interviewed his brother?

2 A. Yes, because the complaint was specifically about me.

3 It wasn't a general complaint about anybody else

4 involved in the interview.

5 Q. But even in circumstances where those interviews and the

6 question of any admissions didn't arise in Clifford

7 McKeown's case.

8 A. As I say, I was asked at the time why -- I can't say why

9 these false allegations were made. I can only

10 presume why.

11 Q. I'm only asking you these questions, you see, because

12 you raised the point in paragraph 67 of your statement.

13 A. Yes, I was asked could I say why, and that was something

14 I said at the time. I have no idea why they were made.

15 Q. Now, so far as the trial of Trevor McKeown is concerned,

16 you gave evidence at it, I believe, didn't you?

17 A. Yes, I think I was in the witness box for a short

18 period, yes.

19 Q. Were these very serious allegations put to you during

20 the course of your evidence?

21 A. No, they were not, no.

22 Q. Were you aware that they were raised at any stage in the

23 course of that trial?

24 A. I don't believe they were even made at that time.

25 Q. As you have said before, this allegation was very much

 

 

60


1 directed at you. Can you think of any specific reasons,

2 so far as you are concerned, why you be might have been

3 singled out by Trevor McKeown in this way?

4 A. Apart from the fact that he knew me and he knew that I

5 was involved in his brother's case and in previous other

6 cases involving both of them.

7 Q. Did he have a grudge against you, so far as you are

8 aware?

9 A. I haven't come across a terrorist yet that liked me.

10 Q. So far as this allegation is concerned, as you said, you

11 were contacted by Detective Chief

12 Superintendent Provoost. You were interviewed, weren't

13 you? You denied the allegations?

14 A. Yes, I was retired and I was asked would I attend

15 voluntarily, which I did because I had nothing to hide.

16 Q. And there was a long interview with him?

17 A. I have no idea how long. It didn't seem long. I have

18 no idea how long it was.

19 Q. But the essence of it was that you denied making any

20 remarks of this kind, didn't you?

21 A. Yes, because the remarks weren't made. And should I say

22 also at this stage had they been made, I am quite

23 certain that he would have referred to them whenever he

24 made his complaint at Gough Barracks.

25 Q. And he didn't, as we have seen?

 

 

61


1 A. No, he did not, and I understand that he said that he

2 had mentioned them to his solicitor, C275. I understand

3 that he was interviewed and totally denied that fact.

4 Q. That is absolutely right and, indeed, we have his notes

5 in the file and the solicitor's notes make no reference

6 whatsoever to any of these matters.

7 A. Yes, which backed me up, that they never happened.

8 Q. Indeed. And just to complete the picture, the

9 solicitor's notes do contain a detailed account from his

10 client of the other complaint, the lesser complaint that

11 we looked at together, made at the time by

12 Trevor McKeown?

13 A. Okay.

14 Q. Can I just ask you a few questions about the day of

15 Rosemary Nelson's murder because you refer to this in

16 your statement at paragraph 65, RNI-840-096 (displayed)?

17 In that paragraph, you mention a very short

18 statement you made in the course of the investigation --

19 that is the murder investigation -- on 19 May,

20 RNI-831-061 (displayed).

21 You say in fact in that statement that you were on

22 duty at court that day in the Trevor McKeown trial. Do

23 you see that?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And then you returned to the office at about four for

 

 

62


1 duties in relation to the murder of Rosemary Nelson.

2 Then you say that:

3 "Accompanied by [your] interviewing partner,

4 Detective Constable Walker, [you] attended the outer

5 cordon of the scene to give ..."

6 Then there is a name of a senior ciphered officer:

7 "... a lift to the station"?

8 A. That's correct.

9 Q. Can I ask you, what duties were you required to

10 undertake that day in relation to the murder?

11 A. None whatsoever.

12 Q. None?

13 A. No.

14 Q. So when you say:

15 "In the afternoon I returned to Lurgan CID office

16 for duties in connection with the murder of

17 Rosemary Nelson", can you explain what you mean?

18 A. I expected to have been involved in the murder enquiry.

19 Q. But in fact you were not?

20 A. No.

21 Q. But nevertheless, although you weren't given duties, you

22 did attend the scene?

23 A. I was asked to go and give a lift to somebody who was at

24 the scene.

25 Q. To take him back to the station?

 

 

63


1 A. That's all it was, yes.

2 Q. Yes, thank you. And you had been asked by that officer,

3 or on his behalf, had you, to pick him up?

4 A. Someone asked me or directed me to go and do it, yes.

5 Q. Now, can I just ask you some more questions about

6 Rosemary Nelson herself picking up some of the points we

7 have touched on together in the course of your evidence?

8 As I understand it from her statement, you only

9 actually met her on a few occasions; is that right?

10 A. Yes, I believe that to be right, yes.

11 Q. And can you now recall -- probably you can't, but let's

12 see -- when you first met her?

13 A. It would have been some time after I went to Lurgan in

14 1989, but no, I can't say when it was. It would have

15 been probably at the local Magistrates' Court or maybe

16 in an interview at Lurgan station. I just can't recall.

17 Q. It looks from all the material that we have that she

18 would be in and out of the police station on a fairly

19 regular basis. Is it likely that you would have bumped

20 into her there or at the Magistrates' Court?

21 A. No, I would say she was probably in and out of Gough a

22 lot more often than she was Lurgan police station.

23 Q. But do you think you may have encountered her there?

24 A. At Lurgan?

25 Q. Yes.

 

 

64


1 A. I may have, yes.

2 Q. You have said to me now on a number of occasions that

3 you regarded her in exactly the same way as you regarded

4 other solicitors with whom you had professional

5 dealings?

6 A. Most certainly.

7 Q. And can I ask you to look in particular, please, at

8 paragraph 10, which is RNI-840-087 (displayed)?

9 Again, these are words you have used or very similar

10 words in your evidence, your perception of her was that

11 she was a professional carrying out her job?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And you then make the point that you felt no resentment

14 or animosity towards her because she worked for some

15 high profile Republican clients?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Do you see that?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Are you saying that that view of her was not in any way

20 changed by the various complaints that were made against

21 you from 1997?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Now, in a later part of your statement you deal with an

24 aspect of the Anthony Simmons complaint, and this is at

25 paragraph 41 at RNI-840-092 (displayed). Do you see:

 

 

65


1 "One of the allegations there was the suggestion in

2 interview that he had been seeing Rosemary Nelson."

3 And you say:

4 "I have no knowledge of Anthony Simmons and

5 Rosemary Nelson seeing each other and I have no

6 knowledge of Rosemary Nelson being involved with any

7 other of her clients other than on a solicitor/client

8 basis."

9 So you were not aware, can I take it, of a rumour

10 circulating that Rosemary Nelson was having a personal

11 relationship with Colin Duffy?

12 A. I don't listen to rumours.

13 Q. Did you hear such a rumour?

14 A. I don't believe I did, no.

15 Q. Can I ask you in that context a question about the

16 intelligence element of briefings that you and

17 I discussed yesterday?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. You said that there would, in pre-interview or during

20 interview briefings, sometimes be intelligence matters

21 referred to?

22 A. Yes, I did qualify that intelligence covered a lot of

23 material.

24 Q. Indeed, and you also said that you would have

25 discussions on a fairly regular basis, I think, with

 

 

66


1 your local Special Branch colleagues about matters of

2 intelligence?

3 A. No, I didn't say that.

4 Q. You didn't?

5 A. No.

6 Q. You didn't have any discussions with your local

7 Special Branch colleagues about intelligence?

8 A. Not direct discussions. We may have chatted about

9 various things, but not about anything specific.

10 Q. But if you had chats of any kind, can I take it that

11 they were face-to-face rather than based on anything

12 written down?

13 A. Oh, yes, yes.

14 Q. So there wouldn't be any record?

15 A. No.

16 Q. Now, can you recall being told in any such conversation

17 about the rumour as to the alleged relationship between

18 Rosemary Nelson and Colin Duffy?

19 A. Not at that time. I have heard it since, but not at

20 that time.

21 Q. You don't think you heard it before her murder?

22 A. I don't believe so, no.

23 Q. In your statement, as we saw yesterday, at various

24 points you say that you held a view or had a belief

25 about something based upon intelligence, and we had

 

 

67


1 a long discussion about it.

2 So can I just ask you, are you sure that you didn't

3 receive intelligence in a broad or narrow sense, however

4 you want to put it, relating to that alleged

5 relationship?

6 A. I'm certain.

7 Q. You also say in your statement at paragraph 10 and back

8 there at RNI-840-087 (displayed) that you were not aware

9 that were Rosemary Nelson had any links with Republican

10 organisations?

11 A. That's correct.

12 Q. Can I just ask you, please, first what you mean by the

13 word "links" in that context?

14 A. Exactly what you have been putting to me over this last

15 day or so. I did not consider her to be linked to or

16 a member of the Provisional IRA.

17 Q. And that wasn't a matter covered in intelligence

18 briefings, which you were present at?

19 A. That she was?

20 Q. Yes.

21 A. Most certainly not.

22 Q. No. Did you hear the view expressed that the way in

23 which she represented her clients in criminal cases was

24 part of an attempt to wage a propaganda war against the

25 RUC?

 

 

68


1 A. No, I don't believe so.

2 Q. And did you ever hear a suggestion made by your

3 colleagues that she was unduly sympathetic to or

4 supportive of Republican paramilitaries?

5 A. No, I had dealings with Republican paramilitaries,

6 Loyalist paramilitaries. I have never come across that

7 with any solicitor that I had dealings with.

8 Q. Can you recall any reference to Rosemary Nelson being

9 made in briefings?

10 A. Other than she was representing the particular

11 interviewee at the time, no, certainly nothing

12 derogatory.

13 Q. Nothing beyond that?

14 A. No.

15 Q. That she was the representative of the relevant suspect

16 or client?

17 A. No, not to my recollection.

18 Q. Presumably the purpose of briefings before interviews

19 began was to give the interviewing officers information

20 about the case on which they were going to be conducting

21 interviews?

22 A. That's correct.

23 Q. And so too in relation to the later briefings during the

24 interviews, that would, as it were, supplement --

25 A. Yes --

 

 

69


1 Q. -- information?

2 A. I suppose from briefings there was purely and simply

3 interviewers relating what had happened during that

4 interview to the next interviewers before they go in.

5 That's what I would have called a briefing at that

6 stage.

7 Q. So, again, in the hypothetical case -- I appreciate it

8 is hypothetical, but presumably if there had been

9 references to her in briefings before or during

10 interviews, that would have shaped the interviewing

11 officers' view of the case?

12 A. I can't speak for other interviewing officers, but it

13 wouldn't have shaped mine.

14 Q. Why do you say that?

15 A. Because I interview the way I interview, and if

16 Rosemary Nelson represents Colin Duffy, she represents

17 Colin Duffy. That is nothing to do with me. It is not

18 going to help me break Colin Duffy.

19 Q. Was that what you regarded as the purpose of the

20 interview?

21 A. To?

22 Q. Break Colin Duffy?

23 A. It certainly was, yes.

24 Q. What do you mean by that?

25 A. To have him admit to the crimes he committed. Otherwise

 

 

70


1 what is the point of interviewing.

2 Q. How far were you prepared to go in that?

3 A. I was prepared to go as far as the law permits me to go.

4 Q. Just coming back to the question of the briefings, are

5 you saying that your view of Rosemary Nelson wasn't

6 influenced by anything that was said to you in any such

7 briefing?

8 A. Yes, I have said that before.

9 Q. So you formed your own view?

10 A. I formed my own view.

11 Q. And stuck to it?

12 A. I formed my own view, yes.

13 Q. Can I ask you just a few questions about something you

14 mentioned yesterday, and you said in particular in

15 relation to intelligence that you would have had access

16 to intelligence held by the local collator. I think

17 that was the word you used?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Is that right?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. I would like to ask you a few more questions about that.

22 What sort of intelligence was collated by that officer?

23 A. Sighting reports. As I said yesterday, antecedent

24 history, the story of his family, things like that.

25 Q. Would it have been, if I can put it that way, CID

 

 

71


1 intelligence or would it have included Special Branch

2 intelligence?

3 A. CID intelligence.

4 Q. So in addition to the broad background stuff, would it

5 include information from CID sources, for example?

6 A. No, I don't believe it would, no. I think it was just

7 generalised sightings. I don't know if you know how the

8 system works, but these guys are fully operational in

9 Lurgan town centre and the sounding area. They walk the

10 streets. They are not there to enjoy the weather. They

11 are not there to shop. They are there to tag policemen

12 on duty, off duty, tag the cars, and they love the

13 bigger picture.

14 Q. And was this officer, the collator, a point of contact

15 between CID on the one hand and Special Branch?

16 A. No, I would say -- generally, but I would say he was

17 a point of contact between CID and uniformed staff. He

18 was a uniformed officer himself.

19 Q. And the period with which we are concerned, as you know,

20 is 1997 to 1999. Can I ask you this question: can you

21 now remember who held that post in Lurgan at that time,

22 yes or no?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Do you have a pen and a piece of paper there?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

72


1 Q. Can you write down the officer's name, please. (Pause)

2 (Handed)

3 MR PHILLIPS: Sir, perhaps unhelpfully, not on the part of

4 the witness, this is the name of an officer who is not

5 a witness and does, therefore, not have anonymity, whose

6 application -- there isn't an application -- has not

7 been considered and who, under our policy, would be

8 redacted in the bundle and the name not disclosed.

9 So I think for present purposes we will just have to

10 leave things as they are, however puzzling that may be,

11 because I simply don't want to announce his name.

12 THE CHAIRMAN: I can assure you all I have written in my

13 notebook is "name written down". I have not recorded

14 what is on that piece of paper.

15 MR PHILLIPS: Sir, should I also make clear that if, as

16 a result of these answers, the Inquiry decided to launch

17 further enquiries and the position changed in relation

18 to the status of the officer, then obviously it may well

19 be that either he would be given anonymity or his name

20 would otherwise be released.

21 THE CHAIRMAN: Yes.

22 MR PHILLIPS: Now, those are all the questions that I have,

23 but I always say to witnesses at the end of the

24 questioning that if there is anything they, the witness,

25 wants to add and say to the Tribunal, this is the

 

 

73


1 moment. Is there anything you would like to say?

2 A. Nothing further.

3 THE CHAIRMAN: Before the witness leaves, would you please

4 confirm that all the cameras have been switched off?

5 MR [name redacted]: Yes, sir, they are.

6 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. You may leave.

7 Yes, Mr Donaldson?

8 MR DONALDSON: Sir, you will recollect that I indicated

9 yesterday I have an application to make in relation to

10 some of the questions, if I may be permitted --

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Then I ought to send a message out that the

12 witness does not leave the secure area where he is. Can

13 that be done, Mr Currans, please?

14 Yes, Mr Donaldson?

15 Application by MR DONALDSON

16 Submissions by MR DONALDSON

17 MR DONALDSON: I think, sir, you were provided with a list

18 of the questions, but I should tell you that in fact

19 there were some further questions prepared in relation

20 to the matter of Mr McKeown, and also there were some

21 MSN questions.

22 Now, what I'm going to do, if I may, I will hand to

23 you -- there are three copies. Firstly, there is an

24 additional list relating to McKeown, which was delivered

25 rather later in the day which were sent in, and then we

 

 

74


1 have some MSN questions which I have printed out, which

2 I will hand in as well.

3 THE CHAIRMAN: Right. Thank you. (Handed)

4 MR DONALDSON: Now, perhaps --

5 THE CHAIRMAN: Just a moment --

6 MR DONALDSON: Yes, of course.

7 THE CHAIRMAN: That is a copy. There is another copy there.

8 Yes?

9 MR DONALDSON: Now, if I may start with the longer list

10 first of all, and make some comments about that.

11 Now, I should indicate that in fact the questions on

12 the first page that I wish to deal with are

13 questions 3 -- there is a second part of question 3 --

14 there is question 4 and question 5.

15 You will recollect that similar questions were asked

16 or suggested in the past and were declined. But I have

17 some further additional points to make in relation to

18 the importance of those questions and reasons why they

19 should be asked.

20 That is because of the nature principally of the

21 examination of the witness. It has been quite obvious

22 that the credibility of this witness has been under very

23 sharp challenge by my learned friend Mr Phillips, and

24 one of the difficulties we have, though, in relation to

25 this is the view that has been taken that in fact there

 

 

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1 is going to be no fact-finding in relation to the

2 allegations that have been made. Nonetheless, I feel

3 duty bound to address that matter as if there may well

4 be findings of fact in relation to to it.

5 THE CHAIRMAN: The three questions you are talking about are

6 the three questions on page 1 of 2, are they?

7 MR DONALDSON: That's right, sir, yes.

8 THE CHAIRMAN: The first question beginning with, "The

9 nature ..."

10 MR DONALDSON: Yes, it is its second part.

11 THE CHAIRMAN: It is the second half of that one -- I'm not

12 going to read them out -- and then 4 and 5?

13 MR DONALDSON: That's right. I will deal with those, which

14 seems to be the matter of some importance, although

15 there are other matters too that I will be mentioning.

16 In relation to the nature of the

17 examination-in-chief, the credibility of this witness

18 was under very sharp challenge from Mr Phillips.

19 THE CHAIRMAN: His evidence has been probed by Mr Phillips.

20 It wasn't a question of challenge.

21 MR DONALDSON: Would you allow me, sir, if I may, to make my

22 submissions and if there are some points you wish to

23 make to me afterwards, then I would be grateful if we

24 could deal with it in that way.

25 THE CHAIRMAN: It was to help you, Mr Donaldson.

 

 

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1 MR DONALDSON: It would help me more if I could make my

2 submissions first.

3 As I indicated, a difficulty we have is that it has

4 been stated that there is to be no findings of fact in

5 relation to the allegations. Yet these allegations have

6 been gone through once more in very great detail, and in

7 fact the witness was asked, for example, if there had

8 been any allegations against him in the past.

9 Now, I understand when one is asked a question like

10 that what it is intended to suggest is that if there

11 were any allegations in the past, to indicate a track

12 record and, therefore, something to be taken into

13 account by the Tribunal, no doubt, in assessing his

14 credibility. And, in fact, also tending to suggest that

15 in fact there may well, therefore, be some substance to

16 the allegations if he was the kind of person who had

17 been the subject of allegations in the past.

18 Even more seriously, and more to the point, was

19 a question in relation to how he dealt with the

20 form 17/3. I have gone to the trouble of checking the

21 transcript from yesterday and I just wish to draw the

22 Tribunal's attention to this.

23 It will be recollected that the witness, in

24 explaining why he had said that nothing at this stage,

25 had explained the reasons for that in considerable

 

 

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1 detail as to why he had said that: principally that it

2 was because he would later be making a very full

3 statement about it, which in fact he did.

4 The question, however, then advanced by Mr Phillips

5 is this:

6 "So I'm bound to ask you, therefore, wouldn't an

7 innocent man -- innocent in relation to the complaint

8 allegations -- have explained, on service of the 17/3

9 form, his case and to try to prove his innocence?"

10 Now, what, I ask, is the purpose of such a question

11 if it is not to suggest that the witness in fact is

12 being untruthful and that in fact he had some ulterior

13 motive for not making it at the time, and suggesting

14 that he was not innocent? How would an innocent man

15 explain that?

16 So I mention that as really the background to this,

17 the point I'm going to make in relation to why these

18 questions should be asked. That is, I suggest this

19 indicates that credibility is a very crucial issue, and

20 we also submit that in respect of that question, which

21 we have posed:

22 "The nature and extent of the knowledge of the

23 following persons on their paramilitary affiliations."

24 That is intended to include a reference to the

25 criminal records of such persons and that applies to all

 

 

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1 of them, including Duffy.

2 You will, of course, recollect that at paragraph 14

3 of his RNI-statement, the witness says that all were in

4 the PIRA. I think that possibly was in relation to the

5 four people he had interviewed, not the rest of them.

6 But in view of this officer experience and in view of

7 the nature of the cross-examination of him, we feel it

8 is only fair that this officer should be entitled to

9 deal with each and every one of those people in the

10 light of the knowledge he has.

11 That brings in the fact of whether they came from

12 the Kilwilke Estate and whether or not they were known

13 to each other. Of course, if they were all in the IRA

14 and most of them came from the Kilwilke Estate, then of

15 course they would know each other. And that comes to

16 the matter of another question that was asked yesterday

17 by Mr Phillips, and that was right at the end of the

18 day's hearing. It was a question of coincidence.

19 I'll just again, to make sure I get it right -- I

20 will read what he said in his question. When the

21 witness had said that it was a plan orchestrated by

22 others, this plan to make allegations, the question is

23 then asked:

24 "So then, it was no coincidence in your view that

25 allegations about the same sort of inappropriate

 

 

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1 derogatory comments about the lawyer were made by those

2 three individuals all arrested and detained

3 in February 1997?"

4 Again, the suggestion being that this is really some

5 kind of rather unlikely coincidence. But, of course, if

6 the witness is asked the question about, oh, well, they

7 knew each other -- and I did mention this before -- then

8 that would be an answer, or may be an answer depending

9 on what he says, to the suggestion given in perhaps

10 a slightly ironic way: is this just a coincidence?

11 And we know that constant reference has been made to

12 the fact that these allegations, made by

13 Rosemary Nelson's clients, were all of such a similar

14 nature that they must, therefore, be true because how

15 could they possibly have thought them up independently

16 without having discussed them with each other, if in

17 fact they had. This is the purpose of the question, and

18 we feel with respect that the Inquiry should inform

19 itself fully about any circumstances which may enable

20 the Inquiry to reach an informed view of this.

21 Now, if I might come then to question number 8 on

22 the list. I'll not read the question out. In fact, I

23 don't think I'll pursue that really very much because he

24 did say in fact that there were 13 murders within the

25 space of nine months. So I think I'll pass on that.

 

 

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1 THE CHAIRMAN: You will --

2 MR DONALDSON: I'll pass on number 8.

3 THE CHAIRMAN: You are passing on number 8?

4 MR DONALDSON: Yes, just to make life a little easier.

5 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

6 MR DONALDSON: Number 9. It's a more general point I ask:

7 describe the murder of the wildfowlers.

8 You will recollect that in his evidence this witness

9 said he had interviewed Mr Duffy about other murders.

10 Now, one can see the reason why that is put in that way,

11 but I think the question really should be in respect of

12 other murders. He did say that. It wasn't pursued, but

13 the Tribunal may consider that of some significance in

14 relation to the character of Mr Duffy.

15 Number 10 is dealt with. Number 11 now. This, in

16 fact -- it is said that it was covered. It has not been

17 covered, with respect. The witness has expressed an

18 opinion in paragraph 18 of his RNI statement. To my

19 recollection, he was never asked to explain what he

20 meant by that and I feel that he should be given the

21 opportunity of explaining that, otherwise it is left

22 there as a piece of evidence without explanation.

23 Paragraph 12, I think, in fact, the first part has

24 been dealt with. The second part of question number 12,

25 it is inferred in the statements of other witnesses that

 

 

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1 the police presented a false case against Duffy. He

2 should be asked to comment on this.

3 Now, I feel that he is a man obviously with

4 knowledge of the Duffy case, and in fact I think he has

5 already expressed a view about Duffy's involvement, but

6 it is submitted that he should be allowed to explain

7 exactly what that expression means about the false case

8 and what he knows about it.

9 Paragraph 13 is really a part of number 9 and it

10 should be read together with number 9.

11 Number 14, he has in fact dealt with that and that

12 doesn't arise.

13 Now, if I might then come, if I may, briefly to the

14 other lists. Now, first of all there is the second

15 list, which has a total of seven questions on it, sir.

16 This arose, as you are aware, or the need for it arose

17 because of the rather late indication that Mr McKeown

18 might be called as a witness, and was drafted on the

19 basis that he would give evidence. But I think it is

20 still very important because Mr Phillips has been

21 through the McKeown allegations in considerable detail,

22 which rather surprised me, bearing in mind that McKeown

23 has not given evidence and it seems unlikely that

24 he will.

25 There is quite a lot involved in it, which the

 

 

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1 witness no doubt dealt with as best he could. I have

2 really only two questions in this. Number 6:

3 "What allegations, if any, did McKeown's counsel put

4 to you at the trial? To what issue were these

5 allegations relevant?"

6 I have to say, again, that just towards the end I

7 think that was actually dealt with and, therefore, I

8 don't think the Tribunal need concern itself with that

9 because what I gather is that the allegation concerning

10 Rosemary Nelson was not put at the trial, and you will

11 bear in mind of course in this context -- and I make

12 this comment now -- that in fact the counsel at the

13 trial were not invited to make statements, nor,

14 surprisingly, was Mr [name redacted], the journalist to

15 whom the allegation was apparently made for the first

16 time six years later.

17 I think, therefore, what this list of questions

18 really boils down to now is just one thing: what do you

19 know about McKeown's criminal record and paramilitary

20 affiliations.

21 Now, the witness, I think, did regard him as

22 a paramilitary Loyalist terrorist. I think he said

23 that. In relation to the criminal record, all we know

24 is that he was convicted of the murder of Bernadette

25 Martin, but we have reason to believe that this man has

 

 

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1 a considerable criminal record about which the witness,

2 I am sure, might be able to say something.

3 May I just make one further point? Towards the end

4 of his examination-in-chief, the witness was asked to

5 speculate on why McKeown had made such an allegation

6 concerning Rosemary Nelson, and it was suggested that

7 this allegation was similar in type from the allegations

8 made by the Lurgan Nine, as I will call them.

9 Now, in fact, that is not really correct because the

10 allegation made here is that this witness is,

11 face-to-face, asked to kill her. That is a totally

12 different kind of allegation and it is felt, perhaps --

13 it is suggested too -- that it is unlikely, because of

14 the diametrically opposed political views of someone

15 like Trevor McKeown and the Lurgan Nine, that he

16 wouldn't, therefore, have known about the allegations.

17 In fact, the Tribunal, I think, will have to

18 consider -- and the witness perhaps should have been

19 asked about this -- whether or not there were situations

20 in which McKeown might well have heard of the

21 allegations concerning Rosemary Nelson and had chosen an

22 opportunity to jump on the bandwagon.

23 So that is why I think that is a further subsidiary

24 point in relation to that. It wasn't put, I don't

25 think, as a MSN question because one doesn't have time

 

 

84


1 to deal with these, but we would respectfully suggest

2 that that is a point which should be considered and

3 asked of the witness.

4 Those are our submissions -- just a moment. Sorry,

5 I should point out --

6 THE CHAIRMAN: What about this other list with five?

7 MR DONALDSON: Yes, thank you, yes, indeed.

8 Now, in relation to that, I think that Mr Phillips

9 spoke to me this morning and he was kind enough to pick

10 up and deal with questions 1, 2 and 4. Those are

11 covered.

12 Question 3 has not been covered. Now, he said, you

13 will recollect, that the witness said in his evidence

14 that he had contact with Barry Toman before the

15 interviews and since. He was not asked what that was.

16 We respectfully suggest that he should be invited to

17 indicate what those contacts were and, as it were, clear

18 up the mystery.

19 Question number 5, I think that in fact has already

20 been asked. It hasn't yet been answered. But that

21 isn't really included. It corresponds with some of the

22 other questions asked on the main sheet and, therefore,

23 I don't think the Tribunal need consider that particular

24 question, except in the context of the questions on the

25 main list.

 

 

85


1 Those are our submissions, sir.

2 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Donaldson, have you had an opportunity of

3 discussing the particular questions that you have raised

4 with us with Mr Phillips since the --

5 MR DONALDSON: Not really. I don't think -- well,

6 Mr Phillips -- well, the way I view this now is that I

7 wouldn't normally discuss the questions -- I would

8 discuss MSN questions, which I have discussed briefly,

9 but not the main list to which a response has been

10 given.

11 So a considered response has been given to the

12 question. So, therefore, we don't see any point in

13 having any further discussion.

14 THE CHAIRMAN: I see. (Pause)

15 Before we call on Mr Phillips, Mr Robinson, do you

16 have anything you wish to say?

17 MR ROBINSON: Yes, sir. I would be very much obliged if we

18 were given the opportunity to take instructions from our

19 client in relation to whether or not he had any issues

20 in relation to the questions asked.

21 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Mr Robinson.

22 Mr Phillips, would you like to make your submissions

23 in relation to what Mr Donaldson said?

24 MR PHILLIPS: Yes, before I do that, I would just like to

25 pick up on what my learned friend Mr Robinson has said.

 

 

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1 If he is asking to take instructions from his client

2 in relation to the specific questions about which we are

3 having debate, I would respectfully suggest that that is

4 not a good idea.

5 If he wishes to take instructions on some other

6 matter, well, that's a different point, but in general,

7 the way we are running things here is not to allow the

8 witness to have a discussion with his lawyer about

9 questions which might later be put to

10 the witness. So far

11 as what Mr Donaldson has been saying,

12 as he was realistic enough to indicate at the outset,

13 a number of these questions are in exactly the same form

14 as you have seen them on many previous occasions, and

15 you have arrived at decisions which have been, if I may

16 say so, consistent in relation to them on those previous

17 occasions.

18 The question is whether in relation to this evidence

19 anything has changed. And the principal point which, on

20 my learned friend's submissions, appears to have changed

21 is by reference to the way in which he says that I have

22 questioned this witness.

23 Now, for obvious reasons I don't want to get into

24 a defence of the way in which I have approached these

25 questions. I have sought, as I have with all other

 

 

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1 witnesses, on your behalf to test the evidence and

2 unless and until I'm instructed not to do that, I intend

3 to continue to do so.

4 There is, however, much more importantly, absolutely

5 no connection whatsoever between the specific complaints

6 or extracts from the questioning which Mr Donaldson has

7 relied upon and the substance of the issue, namely

8 whether these are proper questions, whether they are in

9 fact going to elicit useful evidence or whether they are

10 in fact more by way of submission.

11 Although I will permit myself to say this:

12 ironically perhaps, in the course of this particular

13 witness's evidence, he has taken the opportunity, quite

14 properly, himself to deal with a number of matters going

15 outside my questions, and in the process -- and again,

16 as I say, ironically -- has actually covered a number of

17 the matters that my learned friend says still need to be

18 put to him.

19 So, in fact, whether you are looking at questions 3

20 and 5 on the first page or the questions on the second

21 page, beyond the extent to which my learned friend has

22 already made a concession in this regard, these matters

23 have come out. This witness has actually given evidence

24 to you about, for example, the fact that these

25 complainants were all engaged, as he saw it, in putting

 

 

88


1 together a campaign by complaints to undermine the RUC.

2 He has made abundantly clear to you on the second

3 page his view of Colin Duffy and in particular his view

4 as to the correctness of the original charges brought

5 against him in relation to the murder of the police

6 officers, despite the direction of the

7 Director of Public Prosecutions.

8 So far as the second lot of questions is concerned,

9 those matters, to the extent that they would assist you,

10 have, in my submission, been dealt with. We have been

11 into the outcome of the prosecution at question 2, and

12 in relation to question 6, that has been covered

13 specifically by a question:

14 "Were these matters put to you during the course of

15 the trial?"

16 He dealt with that. I then asked him whether he was

17 aware that they were otherwise raised in the course of

18 the trial, and he dealt with that. And he also made

19 abundantly clear what his view was in relation to

20 Trevor McKeown's paramilitary affiliations.

21 So, sir, so far as the MSN question is concerned,

22 only one, I think, survives the questions, and that

23 takes us fairly and squarely into the areas upon which

24 you have ruled on many previous occasions and, in my

25 submission, there is no warrant based on this evidence

 

 

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1 and the questioning that has taken place for any

2 departure from the position that you have previously

3 taken.

4 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

5 Anything further you want to say, Mr Donaldson?

6 MR DONALDSON: No, sir, just that I am afraid I disagree

7 with all that my learned friend has said in relation to

8 that, and I would mention particularly the third

9 question on the MSN questions, which was not covered

10 before: Could he describe his contact with Barry Toman

11 before the interviews and since.

12 That hasn't been dealt with before. That is the

13 evidence of this witness and it hasn't been said by

14 anyone before, and certainly not by him and he should be

15 given an opportunity to deal with it.

16 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you. (Pause)

17 MR ROBINSON: Sir, if I may briefly interrupt --

18 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Robinson, we will consider your request,

19 but we do not propose to make a ruling before we have

20 ruled on Mr Donaldson's --

21 MR ROBINSON: Sir, if it may assist, I simply wanted to take

22 instructions on the manner in which the questions were

23 asked rather than the substance of the questions.

24 THE CHAIRMAN: Yes. Well, I think it would be appropriate

25 if that were done. We will give you an opportunity to

 

 

90


1 do that, but after we have ruled on Mr Donaldson's

2 submissions.

3 MR ROBINSON: Certainly, sir.

4 THE CHAIRMAN: We will give our ruling at five minutes to

5 two.

6 (12.51 pm)

7 (The short adjournment)

8 (1.55 pm)

9 Ruling

10 THE CHAIRMAN: We have considered Mr Donaldson's submissions

11 in the round and in relation to the particular numbered

12 questions which Mr Donaldson submitted were not

13 adequately asked or developed.

14 In order to arrive at accurate conclusions so as to

15 satisfy our remit within our Terms of Reference, it is

16 essential that witnesses are questioned in a thorough

17 and probing way so that evidence previously tendered is

18 properly tested. That is also in the interests of the

19 witnesses themselves and the Full Participants,

20 including the PSNI.

21 We are satisfied that the witness P121 was

22 questioned by our leading counsel comprehensively,

23 fairly and in a thoroughly proper and probing way.

24 Mr Donaldson's application is, therefore, refused

25 and the witness P121 is released. Please tell him he

 

 

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1 may go.

2 We will rise now for 15 minutes or so, so the

3 screens and so forth can be removed.

4 (1.58 pm)

5 (Short adjournment)

6 (2.20 pm)

7 MISS ANNE COLVILLE (sworn)

8 Questions by MR PHILLIPS

9 THE CHAIRMAN: Yes, Mr Phillips?

10 MR PHILLIPS: Can you give us your full names, please?

11 A. Anne Elizabeth Colville.

12 Q. Thank you. Do you have in front of you a copy of

13 a statement you made to the Inquiry?

14 A. I do.

15 Q. Can we have it on the screen, please, at RNI-841-272

16 (displayed)? Do we see your signature and the date of

17 8 November last year at RNI-841-283 (displayed)?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. It is on the screen, thank you.

20 Now, I would like to take you back, please, to the

21 beginning of your statement, and you tell us first of

22 all that you were with the police division within the

23 NIO joining them in the summer of 1996, and you were

24 there for some three and a half years

25 until December 1999; is that right?

 

 

92


1 A. Yes.

2 Q. You tell us that you were an E02, executive officer

3 level 2. In simple terms, where did that put you in the

4 hierarchy?

5 A. Well, I was -- I worked to a staff officer and then to a

6 principal officer. So I was the bottom of the heap.

7 Q. You are at the bottom of the heap?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Right. You are the first NIO witness we have had, so I

10 am afraid I am going to experiment by showing you

11 a slide which we have, which shows, we think, the

12 structure of the relevant bits of the department. So

13 can we have that up on the screen, please.

14 You see this is, as it were, the big picture with

15 the Secretary of State in the middle and the various

16 ministers and the Permanent Secretary, do you see, at

17 the bottom? But I think we have another slide, which is

18 rather more detailed, after that. There it is.

19 So looking at the left-hand side, if you go down to

20 the bottom of the shape, do you see "executive officer"?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Is that your grade?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. So you were reporting to a staff officer; is that right?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

93


1 Q. And then he was -- it says here anyway -- reporting to

2 a deputy principal in the police complaints division.

3 Is that right?

4 A. When I arrived, I worked directly to the staff officer

5 and he worked directly to the head of division. I don't

6 remember at that stage a deputy principal in place.

7 Q. Okay. So the head of division is the next one up, is

8 it? Head of police complaints division; is that right?

9 A. Well, that would be the head of division and I worked to

10 the staff officer and he worked directly to the head of

11 division.

12 Q. I understand. Okay. But you don't think there was

13 a deputy principal --

14 A. Sorry, head of police complaints division, not directly

15 to the head of the division.

16 Q. That is the next thing I want to ask you. The head of

17 police complaints division and the head of the KPPS

18 branch both appear to be under the head of police

19 division; is that right?

20 A. Yes, that would be correct.

21 Q. What about the bit on the right? Security policing and

22 operations division; what is that?

23 A. That is a completely different division. They were

24 located in a different building. Yes.

25 Q. Okay. So far as you are concerned, therefore, when you

 

 

94


1 were there, you believed that, looking at our diagram,

2 you worked for the staff officer and he worked direct to

3 the head of police complaints?

4 A. As far as I can remember, yes.

5 Q. Now, so far as the two branches under police division

6 are concerned -- that is police complaints and KPPS --

7 were they staffed by completely different people?

8 A. Yes, they were.

9 Q. Was there liaison between them?

10 A. When appropriate, yes, but they were in different rooms

11 so ...

12 Q. So far as your responsibilities as an EO in this police

13 complaints division are concerned, what were the areas

14 with which you were concerned in this period between

15 summer 1996 and the end of 1999?

16 A. When I arrived, I worked as part of a police bill team

17 and I was responsible for, you know, taking minutes of

18 meetings. And then, when the bill was going through the

19 different stages in Parliament, I supported the bill

20 team and prepared all the documents. Then I also

21 handled the police complaints correspondence that came

22 into the office and -- I'm trying to think what else

23 now. I worked on police disciplinary appeals to the

24 Secretary of State, and I'm sure I have left something

25 out, but broadly --

 

 

95


1 Q. Have a look at paragraph 2 of your statement because it

2 looks as though you were also involved in the Hayes

3 Report?

4 A. Oh, yes, sorry.

5 Q. That was about police complaints, wasn't it?

6 A. It was, and when I arrived it was really winding up.

7 And I suppose my role was, again, administrative in

8 terms of proofreading and preparing, you know, for

9 publication.

10 Q. So that was presumably managing the transition between

11 the old system and the new Police Ombudsman system?

12 A. That was a report, so the old system ran -- yes, the

13 whole time I was in police division it was under the old

14 complaints system.

15 Q. Yes, but you tell us at the end of your statement, don't

16 you, paragraph 35, which is RNI-841-283 (displayed),

17 that you then became involved in the, as it were,

18 interim regime, which led to the establishment of the

19 Ombudsman?

20 A. That's correct.

21 Q. Do you see that?

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

23 Q. Now, so far as complaints were concerned and dealing

24 with police complaints, did that put you in regular

25 contact with colleagues, for instance, at the ICPC?

 

 

96


1 A. The way we handled correspondence, we had to go to the

2 ICPC and the police. You know, we had nothing in the

3 office so we relied on the police and the ICPC.

4 Q. Because they were actually dealing with complaints on

5 the ground?

6 A. That's right, yes.

7 Q. So if questions came in to you, or letters which had to

8 be dealt with, addressed to your part of the NIO, you

9 needed them to provide you with the answers?

10 A. Absolutely.

11 Q. And you tell us about how that process worked in

12 practice in paragraph 11 of your statement, and that,

13 again, is at RNI-841-274 (displayed). If you have the

14 hard copy, which I hope you have, it will be very easy

15 for you to see that it flicks over to RNI-841-275.

16 Now, what I would like to ask you about there is on

17 that page actually, RNI-841-275 (displayed), where you

18 tell us about your experience in putting questions and

19 enquiries to other organisations.

20 You say in the third line:

21 "I sometimes also followed it ..."

22 That is written communication:

23 "... with a telephone call, especially if the matter

24 was high profile."

25 Then you say at the end of the paragraph:

 

 

97


1 "Sometimes I might only receive a partial response

2 from the police and I would go back to the police for

3 a fuller one."

4 So from time to time you had to chase them a bit to

5 get either a response in time or a fuller response?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And it looks as though you were working to a 15 working

8 days limit in terms of responses?

9 A. Absolutely.

10 Q. Now, where did that come from? Who laid that down, that

11 rule?

12 A. Well, those would be well recognised civil service

13 guidelines.

14 Q. Which required you to produce a response in three weeks?

15 A. If you couldn't give a complete response, you were

16 obliged really to send out a holding reply.

17 Q. And those were the conditions under which you operated?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Thank you. So, therefore, presumably, in a hypothetical

20 case, if you send out a request to the police, let's

21 say, to Command Secretariat and you are coming up to

22 your deadline, that would be the sort of case where you

23 chase them to help you with your response?

24 A. Absolutely.

25 Q. The sentence we looked at just a little while ago at the

 

 

98


1 top of this page says:

2 "I sometimes also followed it up with a telephone

3 call ..."

4 That is the initial request, I assume?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. "... especially if the matter was high profile."

7 So what sort of cases would have merited that

8 description?

9 A. Well, correspondence relating to Rosemary Nelson would

10 have been considered high profile because basically

11 where the correspondence was coming from. It generally

12 was coming internationally and from human rights

13 organisations.

14 I have to say it probably was the first time

15 I experienced -- or any of us experienced, you know,

16 a pattern of communication in relation to one

17 complainant and, you know, with an international

18 dimension. So it certainly would have been considered

19 high profile, and because she was a lawyer who

20 considered herself to be under threat as well.

21 Q. So all of those factors combined together, did they, to

22 make it regarded as a high profile case?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. And from the sound of what you have just said, it sounds

25 as though this was the first time you had experienced

 

 

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1 a case where letters were coming in from those sorts of

2 people, including the international bodies?

3 A. I think so, from memory anyway, yes.

4 Q. Had you ever experienced what we will see in a moment

5 was the volume, the pace and volume of the

6 correspondence which started to come in?

7 A. No, no.

8 Q. Was there another case like it in your time in the

9 police complaints division?

10 A. No, I think the highest profile cases for me with my

11 involvement would have been Rosemary Nelson, Colin Duffy

12 and Robert Hamill.

13 Q. Yes, thank you.

14 Now, we have looked, as it were, at the big picture

15 of the areas you worked in. I think in order to put

16 your evidence in context, what would be helpful is to

17 get from you what your day-to-day work consisted of,

18 a typical day in the police complaints division. What

19 were your main tasks in a typical day?

20 A. Well, it depends, you know, at what period over the time

21 I was in police division, but I think over this period,

22 from the beginning of March it was the handling of

23 correspondence in relation to complaints and possibly

24 still the police bill, but I'm not sure if I'm

25 completely accurate about that. And again, I can't

 

 

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1 remember when the Hayes Report was completely finalised,

2 but all those areas, and then subsequently disciplinary

3 appeals to the Secretary of State.

4 Q. Can I ask you arising out of what you have just said

5 about your memory, because this is something you

6 yourself bring up in your statement in paragraph 7.

7 Shall we just have a look at that? RNI-841-273.

8 Perhaps we could enlarge that on the screen, please

9 (displayed). Because you say, very frankly, that you do

10 not have a good memory and your recollection of matters

11 could be vague particularly for events going back eight

12 years or more.

13 Now, the other point I wanted to touch on with you

14 is in the next sentence, about the volume of

15 correspondence. But on this question of memory, it

16 looks from the statement as though you very much relied

17 on the documents that you were shown by Eversheds, the

18 solicitors, to jog your memory about things. Is that

19 fair?

20 A. Totally, yes.

21 Q. And one can see going through it there are some points

22 where, as it were, the document trail ended and you

23 weren't able to help them beyond the documents?

24 A. That's true, yes.

25 Q. In the course of this afternoon, I hope we will see some

 

 

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1 of the further documents and see whether they help your

2 recollection. But can I ask you about this business of

3 the large volume of correspondence?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Because it is important that we keep the particular

6 letters that you deal with in your statement in a proper

7 context.

8 Presumably then, it follows that every week you

9 would be involved in considering, drafting and then

10 sending out substantial numbers of letters; is that

11 right?

12 A. No, I wouldn't agree with that actually. I think

13 I could have worded this better.

14 I worked in a -- it was a very busy post. I had

15 moved there, I think, on promotion. It was a very

16 responsible post. I would say it was one of the most

17 responsible posts I have had because of the nature of

18 the work.

19 I wouldn't like to mislead and say there was a large

20 volume of correspondence. I think really on reflection

21 I mean that the Rosemary Nelson correspondence certainly

22 created a lot of work, but no, I mean, to be really

23 accurate, I don't mean a large lot of complaints came in

24 to us in police division.

25 Q. Because of course the first place for correspondence

 

 

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1 about complaints, one would assume, is either the RUC or

2 the Commission itself, the ICPC, not the NIO?

3 A. Absolutely, yes.

4 Q. So in the context of the overall number of complaints

5 that were being made each year, presumably your

6 department only learnt about and had dealings with

7 a very small proportion?

8 A. That would be true.

9 Q. Yes.

10 A. I'm sorry if I have misled there.

11 Q. Not at all. It is very helpful that you have clarified

12 it.

13 What I sense from what you say is that it was the

14 large volume of correspondence about these particular

15 issues -- Rosemary Nelson, Colin Duffy et cetera -- that

16 was so striking?

17 A. Absolutely.

18 Q. Thank you. Can I ask you something about the way you

19 dealt with correspondence in the police complaints

20 division?

21 Assume for the moment a letter just comes into the

22 NIO. Does it then, if it is about a complaint, a police

23 complaint, get directed to you in your division?

24 A. Yes, it would.

25 Q. How would it reach your desk specifically?

 

 

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1 A. Well, we had an administration branch next door, which

2 received post really, and correspondence could come down

3 from the ministers' offices in the form of a minister's

4 case, which would have a folder. And it would have

5 a cover sheet that said "for response" and a date for

6 that response.

7 Really all that meant was -- and these were more

8 likely to be from politicians or elected representatives

9 and that calibre of people. And the Minister would sign

10 off on the letter. But the process was the same whether

11 it was a "treat official" or a minister's case -- our

12 process was the same. It just meant that the Minister

13 or the Secretary of State would actually sign the

14 letter. And treat officials were generally perhaps from

15 the public or, you know, that sort of nature.

16 Q. When the correspondence, the incoming correspondence,

17 reached your part of the NIO, what was the process for

18 then deciding who would deal with it within, you know,

19 you and your colleagues?

20 A. Well, it would go -- it would go to the head of police

21 complaints branch and the head of division would pass it

22 down -- or it was Simon I worked to directly at the

23 beginning.

24 Q. Simon Rogers?

25 A. Yes, Simon would pass it to me and we would have

 

 

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1 a discussion about how to handle it.

2 Q. He was your line manager?

3 A. Yes, when I went in first.

4 Q. And then was succeeded by?

5 A. He was promoted to Head of Complaints and Discipline

6 branch. I can't remember when, and then Lesley Foster

7 became my direct line manager and staff officer.

8 Q. Now, imagine we have got the letter then. You have had

9 a discussion with, let's say, him in this hypothetical

10 example. Would you then do the drafting yourself and

11 submit it for his approval? Is that how it worked?

12 A. Yes, always, because anything to do with policing was

13 always considered to be very highly sensitive, and

14 anything -- it used to annoy me, I suppose, sometimes

15 that everything had to be cleared, but it was absolutely

16 correct.

17 Q. So there was no question of a letter drafted by you

18 going out directly?

19 A. No.

20 Q. That was because of a policy, presumably, about letters

21 to do with policing, was it?

22 A. Not a policy. I think just Simon was very, very

23 particular and it was a very good thing because the

24 wording in any letter could -- letters can go public,

25 you know, even have criminal proceedings maybe, you

 

 

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1 know. So you have to be really, really sensitive, and I

2 was quite -- well, I was annoyed sometimes, but really

3 in the end I was quite happy to have things cleared.

4 Q. So when you say in paragraph 2 of your statement at,

5 RNI-841-272 (displayed):

6 "I was responsible for dealing with correspondence

7 relating to police complaints and disciplinary matters."

8 What that amounted to in practice was you were

9 responsible for drafting --

10 A. For drafting, yes.

11 Q. -- and submitting it to a line manager?

12 A. Absolutely.

13 Q. And it was only after that process had happened that the

14 letter would go out; is that right?

15 A. On every occasion, I would say, yes.

16 Q. Thank you very much. Can I just ask you a question,

17 which I am sure will invite an obvious answer, but can

18 you have a look at paragraph 4 at RNI-841-272

19 (displayed).

20 There, you say your role was:

21 "... essentially administrative function, drafting

22 responses to correspondence received and preparing

23 submissions to officials and ministers. I did not have

24 a policy role."

25 Again, you are the first person I have been able to

 

 

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1 ask this question: What does that mean? What were you

2 not involved in when you say you didn't have a "policy

3 role"?

4 A. I was not involved in deciding policy or in discussions

5 on policy. It was purely, as I say, administrative in

6 terms of, as I have outlined there, drafting responses

7 to the correspondence. And my role in the Hayes Report

8 was purely administrative and my role in disciplinary

9 appeals would have been to prepare a submission, but I

10 did not have to decide on the outcome.

11 Q. But can I take it from that that the individuals, your

12 colleagues, who were dealing with policy questions in

13 your part of the NIO would have been senior to you?

14 A. Oh, yes.

15 Q. Thank you. Now, you mentioned earlier this expression

16 "minister's case", and I think you also mentioned the

17 other expression "treat official", which you deal with

18 in this next paragraph, 5.

19 Can you help us: where would the line be drawn

20 between a minister's case type of correspondence and

21 a "treat official" type of correspondence?

22 A. Really private office would have generated -- private

23 office for a minister would have generated the

24 minister's cases and would have passed down "treat

25 officials". Sometimes we queried should something not

 

 

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1 be considered a minister's case, but it really came

2 through private office and then through the official

3 correspondence came in -- you know, ordinary public

4 correspondence came through our office and that was

5 clearly, you know, it had come in the post. It was from

6 a member of the public or something. So that would have

7 been -- "treat officially" I think really should be the

8 terminology, but private office generated the minister's

9 case. But sometimes with we did raise with them whether

10 something that came down as a "treat official" maybe

11 should have been considered a minister's case.

12 Q. So you would be suggesting that perhaps they had drawn

13 the line in the wrong way in that particular case, and

14 presumably it was then for them in the private office to

15 decide whether they agreed with you and to reclassify

16 the letter?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Now, you give an example there of the sort of

19 correspondence you would find in a minister's case:

20 letters from politicians and other similar individuals.

21 Here we know we have got correspondence from foreign

22 organisations and politicians. Where would you have

23 expected them to fall? Which side of the line?

24 A. I personally might have -- well, in the case of the

25 Lynch letter, I don't -- I think I maybe received that

 

 

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1 for information. I mean, that letter was to

2 Sir Louis Blom-Cooper and it was marked -- or he

3 mentioned, you know, in strictest confidence. So I, in

4 terms of that letter -- and there is nothing written on

5 it for me to action, so I think that maybe just came to

6 me for information. So I'm not sure, you know, how that

7 was generated.

8 Q. Can I ask you this: was there a rule, for instance, that

9 letters coming from abroad had to be dealt with one way

10 or the other?

11 A. I wasn't aware of --

12 Q. Was there a specific rule one way or the other for

13 letters from NGOs?

14 A. Again, not that I was aware of, but I wouldn't

15 necessarily be aware of that.

16 Q. No, you wouldn't be involved yourself in deciding where

17 a particular letter fell?

18 A. No, but I might query it.

19 Q. Yes.

20 A. But the bottom line is that, no matter whether it was

21 a minister's case or "treat official" in relation to

22 complaints, the process, you know, would have been the

23 same.

24 Q. In other words, the process of --

25 A. Of checking with the police.

 

 

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1 Q. -- checking with the police or the ICPC?

2 A. And really the only difference would have been perhaps

3 obviously in the way that the letter was worded.

4 Obviously if it was going out on behalf of a minister,

5 signed by a minister, it might be worded slightly

6 differently, but the process was the same.

7 Q. Yes. Can I just ask you about correspondence from

8 Rosemary Nelson herself? You deal with that in

9 paragraph 8, and you make the point that you do not

10 think you saw any correspondence from her or her office

11 directly. Do you see that?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. So the correspondence which you described before, the

14 large volume of correspondence, may have been written

15 about her but it was written by others?

16 A. I would be 100 per cent sure I never saw correspondence

17 directly from Rosemary Nelson or her office.

18 Q. Can I ask you about the next part of your statement

19 because obviously you were asked in the interview

20 whether you recalled the Law Society making

21 representations in relation to her, and you say:

22 "I don't recall seeing correspondence from the

23 Law Society or any discussion with its staff."

24 We are now going over the page:

25 "But I have a slight recollection of some discussion

 

 

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1 in this regard between colleagues. I can't remember

2 whether this occurred before or after her death."

3 Now, is there anything more you can say to help

4 about what the subject of that discussion between

5 colleagues was?

6 A. No. Personally, I think I maybe in the office asked the

7 question: why aren't the Law Society, you know, making

8 representation on behalf of Rosemary? Because I looked

9 upon them perhaps as, you know, her trade union, if you

10 like.

11 Q. They were the professional body, weren't they?

12 A. Yes, the professional body. So I'm sure I have --

13 I mean, at some point that was very likely, but I can't

14 remember.

15 Q. So do you think that when you saw the growing volume of

16 correspondence about her and what was said to be threats

17 against her, you raised the question: why aren't we

18 hearing from the professional body to which this

19 solicitor belongs?

20 A. It sounds like something I would say.

21 Q. What about the discussion with colleagues? Can you help

22 us with any more about that?

23 A. I'm sure that question -- whether it was raised by

24 myself or others -- you know, prompted a discussion, but

25 I'm sorry, I can't remember.

 

 

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1 Q. You can't remember whether any action was taken as

2 a result of that?

3 A. No.

4 Q. Are you sure?

5 A. No, I'm sorry, I can't. No.

6 Q. Thank you. Well, I would like to move to the first

7 specific topic now, please, and that is the letter that

8 came in from Senator Torricelli from the United States

9 of America. I would like to start, please, by looking

10 with you at an internal NIO memo, which we find at

11 RNI-101-019 (displayed).

12 This is from a civil servant whose name has been

13 redacted, and I am afraid there are a number of

14 redactions on this page which we will just have to deal

15 with. I hope they don't obscure any of the sense for

16 you. Now, he's in the IPL division. Can you help

17 with that, please? What was that?

18 A. It was our international planning division in London.

19 Q. What was its role?

20 A. I really -- I wouldn't have had contact with them.

21 I mean, I couldn't say, I'm sorry.

22 Q. So would it be fair to suggest that this was an unusual

23 source for a memo to come to you in police complaints

24 division?

25 A. Well, I suppose what I do know about them is

 

 

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1 correspondence from internationally, or this particular

2 bit of correspondence, had come through that office and

3 they were looking to coordinate a reply for the British

4 Ambassador in Washington, for him to respond to the

5 Senator. So that's why it had come through that

6 division.

7 Q. And do you see the top left? Again, perhaps you can

8 help with this. It is addressed to two individuals --

9 Mr Perry and Mrs Collins -- and they both have acronyms

10 after their names, one is "SPOB" and one is "POB". What

11 are they, please?

12 A. SPOB is Security Policy Operations branch -- or division

13 in Belfast. There was often a Belfast/London divide,

14 so -- and POB is Police Operations, Belfast.

15 Q. Is that police division?

16 A. Yes, it is.

17 Q. So SPOB is security policing and operations based in

18 Belfast and POB is police division?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Thank you. So this is a memo then that goes to both

21 parts and it attaches the Torricelli letter. And just

22 to remind you, that is on the next page at RNI-101-020

23 (displayed). It is a letter of 15 April and it was

24 addressed to the Ambassador in Washington, as you see,

25 and it comes from Mr Torricelli who was a senator.

 

 

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1 Now, the question that I wanted to ask you -- and it

2 is probably best for you to go back and look at

3 RNI-101-019 (displayed) -- is how was it, can you help

4 us, that this memo came to you to deal with?

5 A. Well, it is because of what -- of the issues that the

6 Senator has raised and basically about threats or

7 alleged threats were made directly to Rosemary Nelson.

8 So that is why it came to our division.

9 Q. Let's just look at the letter together, RNI-101-020

10 (displayed), because, as you rightly say, it refers to

11 threats against her life made by an officer of the RUC,

12 and it says:

13 "Although they aren't made directly to her ..."

14 Do you see that?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. "... they have been terrifying nonetheless ... an

17 attempt to intimidate her, but recently they have become

18 more insistent and ominous causing her to fear for her

19 safety."

20 Then if you look in the next paragraph:

21 "I hope that the Attorney General will consider

22 instituting a criminal investigation of Mrs Nelson's

23 charges as well as the threats received by other

24 solicitors in similar situations."

25 So just looking at the letter then and standing back

 

 

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1 from it for a moment, it wasn't your department's

2 business, was it, to investigate threats against life?

3 A. No, no.

4 Q. And it wasn't your department's business, was it, to

5 institute a criminal investigation?

6 A. No.

7 Q. As I understand it, based on what you have told us, your

8 department was concerned with complaints against the

9 police; is that right?

10 A. Yes. I suppose we covered the correspondence in

11 relation to complaints and following up on them. We had

12 the Hayes Report, which was, you know -- and all that

13 came out of that.

14 So, yes, we looked at -- we were the kind of policy

15 and we also informed ministers or, you know, round the

16 system in relation to complaints, where that was

17 appropriate. So we kept ministers informed if it was

18 appropriate and, as I say, we had the kind of whole

19 Hayes Report legislative -- what came out of that.

20 So, yes, everything to do with complaints, but we

21 had nothing -- we relied totally on the police and the

22 ICPC. There was no kind of hands-on connection with

23 complaints, if you like.

24 Q. No, exactly. As you said before, they were doing the

25 work on the ground and you were not.

 

 

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1 But the same is even more obviously true, isn't it,

2 about investigating threats against somebody's life or

3 launching a criminal investigation? That was no

4 business of your department at all?

5 A. No, not at all.

6 Q. That was in truth a matter for the police and the proper

7 investigating authorities?

8 A. Absolutely, yes.

9 Q. When this came to you in April or May -- April, I think

10 it must have been, in 1997 -- had you ever received

11 a piece of correspondence like it?

12 A. Not to my knowledge.

13 Q. It alleged death threats against a solicitor in

14 Northern Ireland?

15 A. No, not --

16 Q. You would have remembered?

17 A. That was the alarming part of it.

18 Q. Indeed. Can we just look back from this letter, which

19 we have been through together, to the IPL memorandum

20 which covered it, which is at RNI 101-019 (displayed)?

21 This letter, in the second paragraph, deals with the

22 content of the Senator's letter and refers to alleged

23 claims and, indeed, to discrimination and harassment.

24 There is no reference in this memorandum, is there, to

25 the question of threats against her life?

 

 

116


1 A. No, no.

2 Q. But when you read the Senator's letter at RNI-101-020

3 (displayed), presumably the thing that struck you most

4 obviously was that it was, indeed, saying that this

5 solicitor was being threatened?

6 A. She believed that she was under threat.

7 Q. Indeed. And that the threats were getting, as he put

8 it:

9 "... more insistent and ominous, causing her to fear

10 for her safety"?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. So looking at the letter now, the purpose of it

13 presumably when you read it, was to report concern about

14 threats to her life, to ask for a criminal

15 investigation, rather than to complain about the police?

16 A. Well, if someone believed that the threat to life was

17 coming from a police officer, that certainly would, you

18 know -- you would take that as a complaint.

19 Q. Indeed. But it was by no means the only aspect of the

20 letter that came to your attention, was it?

21 A. In what way?

22 Q. Because the letter, perhaps more urgently and

23 importantly, seemed to be saying that a solicitor was

24 being threatened?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

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1 Q. With death?

2 A. Of course, yes.

3 Q. Yes. Now, as I understand it, you then forwarded the

4 letter to both Command Secretariat, in other words to

5 the police, and to the ICPC?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And we can see your letter to Command Secretariat at

8 RNI-101-018, dated 30 April 1997, addressed to the chief

9 superintendent there, who has a cipher, as you see. And

10 in fact you were dealing with two letters, of which the

11 one we are concerned with is the first one. Do you see?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And you ask for background information, an update on

14 events where appropriate and say that it would be

15 appreciated, and it is signed by your line manager on

16 your behalf, as it were?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. And copied, as we see, to the Independent Commission?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Can I just ask you, was that officer, the Chief

21 Superintendent, somebody with whom you were in regular

22 contact in the course of your work?

23 A. We put everything really to do with complaints -- we

24 went through Command Secretariat, so yes, I would have

25 been in contact with a number -- well, I suppose really

 

 

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1 two officers, two or three on a -- well, as appropriate

2 really.

3 Q. Of which he was one?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Thank you. Can I just ask you to go back to look at the

6 original memorandum from IPL, which is RNI-101-019

7 (displayed)? It says at the end of the second

8 paragraph:

9 "Senator Torricelli requests that the Attorney

10 General be asked to investigate these claims."

11 Presumably it wasn't any of your business to be

12 concerned about that part of the Senator Torricelli's

13 letter; that was not a matter for you at all, was it?

14 A. That's correct, yes.

15 Q. Equally, we can see from the top of this memorandum that

16 the matter went to the SPOB?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Whereas you were one part of the police division, the

19 POB, weren't you?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. It was addressed to both parts. Did you liaise with

22 colleagues in the other part, SPOB, about who and how

23 a response was going to be put together?

24 A. If that happened, it probably wasn't at my level; it

25 probably involved Simon to whoever in SPOB, Nick Perry

 

 

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1 perhaps. But I don't recall that that happened.

2 Certainly I don't recall that I was involved in it.

3 Sorry, I do not have a copy of the response that we did

4 as part input, so I'm not sure what went --

5 Q. We are going to trace that through together in a moment,

6 but can I just ask you about a comment you make in your

7 statement in this context, and it is at RNI-841-276

8 (displayed), because here you pick up a point made by

9 the Senator -- do you see paragraph 14 at the top of the

10 page? Do you remember he said it wasn't appropriate for

11 the RUC to investigate a complaint against one of its

12 own members? That was a point that he made?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. As you rightly say, at that time there was no

15 alternative to that. Then you make a comment at the

16 very end of the paragraph. There is a general comment:

17 "I think the Secretary of State had the power to

18 refer a complaint for investigation to the ICPC."

19 Can you help -- it may be that you can't -- did you

20 know the circumstances in which the Secretary of State

21 was entitled to refer a complaint?

22 A. I would have at the time, to be honest, but --

23 Q. You can't remember now?

24 A. I wouldn't be the best person to outline that, to be

25 honest.

 

 

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1 Q. But, again, with that sort of -- sorry?

2 A. Yes, the Secretary of State had the power to refer

3 a complaint, but -- I'm sorry -- I mean, I would have

4 been on top of this at the time, but I can't remember...

5 Q. Can I assume that that sort of issue, that sort of

6 possibility, would have been discussed and debated at

7 a higher level than yours?

8 A. Oh, yes, sorry. I'm not sure maybe at this stage, but

9 I'm not quite sure -- yes, but it would have been at

10 a much higher level than mine, yes.

11 Q. If we look on in the file, it looks as though you took

12 an initiative in relation to this correspondence from

13 the Senator some three weeks late on 22 May. We can see

14 that at RNI-101-026 (displayed). Do you see that? It

15 is from you to to an officer whose name has been

16 redacted in Command Secretariat, correspondence from

17 Senator Torricelli:

18 "Further to my telephone call last week, this is

19 written confirmation of my request for further

20 information in relation to the above 'treat official'

21 correspondence."

22 Just pausing there for a moment -- and it may be you

23 can't remember -- but had you by this stage, do you

24 think, received some information from

25 Command Secretariat to help you answer the letter?

 

 

121


1 A. I would have thought so.

2 Q. You were outside the three-week period --

3 A. Yes, because as far as I can remember the Ambassador had

4 responded -- I may not be correct here, but I think the

5 ambassador had a first response to the Senator about

6 the -- sorry, I'm getting confused here.

7 Q. Can I just show you an earlier --

8 A. Yes. Sorry, the Ambassador, I think, did a first

9 response about 20 May, if I was correct, so I can only

10 presume that something -- you know, he had something to

11 do a kind of holding reply with. So I obviously had

12 followed up with a telephone conversation to the police.

13 Q. Can you remember now anything about that telephone

14 conversation?

15 A. Absolutely not, I'm sorry.

16 Q. So are we then, as it were, left with what you have

17 recorded here, which is that you were requesting further

18 information in relation to the letter?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. You can't help with what sort of further information you

21 were looking for?

22 A. I am sorry, I can't.

23 Q. Do you think it might have been further information as

24 set out in the next paragraph; in other words, to be

25 told whether police have discussed with Mrs Nelson

 

 

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1 anything to do with her personal protection?

2 A. Very possibly. That was part of it.

3 The police, you know, sometimes they gave you sort

4 of a part reply and, you know, you maybe went back to

5 them with a telephone call and said maybe, you know, you

6 haven't answered this part. I suppose -- our bottom

7 line was we wanted to be as helpful and informative in

8 correspondence as we could, so we were quite particular

9 about that.

10 So sometimes we, I am sure, often annoyed the police

11 by contacting them and asking for what maybe appeared to

12 them trivial things. So I'm sure that telephone

13 conversation was about a number of things but -- and

14 also personal protection, obviously.

15 Q. If we keep that letter on the left-hand side of the

16 screen, please, and put up on the right-hand side,

17 RNI-101-020 (displayed).

18 Thank you. This is the letter, isn't it? We have

19 looked at it together before?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. And as we have seen together before, it focused on the

22 threats that were being made. So is it a fair

23 assumption that what you wanted to hear from

24 Command Secretariat was what was being done about the

25 threats, and in particular what you describe as being

 

 

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1 discussions with her to do with her personal protection?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. At this point, on 22 May, it looks as though you had

4 received no information on that topic from them?

5 A. I always preferred to have something in writing from the

6 ICPC and the police because these things were

7 complicated. And, as I say, I preferred to have

8 something in writing than just a telephone conversation,

9 which I could misinterpret.

10 Q. Indeed. And information of this kind, about what was

11 being done about personal protection, could only have

12 come from the police? It wasn't something you could put

13 forward?

14 A. No.

15 Q. And you tell us in your statement -- if you have the

16 hard copy there, it is paragraph 13 at the bottom of

17 RNI-841-275 (displayed) -- that your line manager,

18 Simon Rogers, always took extremely seriously death

19 threats made against individuals?

20 A. Yes, I suppose -- I mean -- I think this was the first,

21 you know, and possibly only one we had. But, I mean,

22 that is very badly phrased, but we obviously -- we all

23 took this particular series of correspondence seriously.

24 But I mean, death threats -- it wouldn't be accurate

25 because this was the only one.

 

 

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1 Q. So this particular one, this particular example, was

2 taken extremely seriously?

3 A. Oh, yes, very much.

4 Q. And that's why, presumably, you had to send the memo:

5 because you needed to hear from the police so that you

6 would deal fully and properly with the Senator's letter?

7 A. Yes, that would be true. As I say, personal protection

8 was definitely not something for our branch.

9 Q. Indeed.

10 A. Within the NIO the Key Persons Protection Scheme would

11 have been the natural home for that. But, again, I

12 don't know the whole remit for the KPPS. But at this

13 stage, we raised -- because really of what was written

14 in the correspondence by the Senator, we raised -- and,

15 again, I wouldn't have done that just off my own --

16 Q. Sorry, just to be clear, you wouldn't have done what

17 just off your own ...?

18 A. I wouldn't have written about personal protection

19 without taking direction --

20 Q. Without having discussed it with your line manager?

21 A. Absolutely.

22 Q. Right. But on this question of personal protection, as

23 you say, there was the other branch, the KPPS. Do you

24 remember discussing this issue with them at this stage?

25 A. No, no, I never was involved in that and I don't know --

 

 

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1 I don't really know if that was discussed or when it

2 was.

3 But at this stage I think, you know, this was

4 a complaints issue for us. We had picked up obviously

5 on the very serious nature of the complaints, but --

6 I mean, it wasn't really for our branch, it wasn't --

7 personal protection, we had nothing to do with the risk

8 assessment or anything like that. It was something that

9 we did over and above, really, our remit.

10 Q. Yes, I mean, the question you ask in the memorandum on

11 the left has nothing to do with complaints at all,

12 does it?

13 A. Well, indirectly -- well, no, it hasn't, no.

14 Q. No. You were taking it upon yourselves by way of

15 response to the Senator's letter to get to the issue

16 that he was actually raising, which was a threat to

17 life?

18 A. Well, I suppose we had to establish was the complaint,

19 you know -- what was the nature of the complaint.

20 Q. You have used that word now on a number of occasions.

21 Where is the complaint in the Senator's letter?

22 A. Well, he doesn't use that terminology, but the very fact

23 that, you know, he is alleging that a police officer has

24 been involved in misconduct, if you like, would raise

25 the whole sort of spectre of a complaint really.

 

 

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1 Q. But amongst the things raised in the Senator's letter,

2 that was perhaps the least important, wasn't it?

3 A. Oh, I mean, the threat was the most important, but that

4 wasn't something for us. I mean, personal protection

5 would be for the police initially.

6 Q. And that's why you directed the memorandum to them,

7 presumably?

8 A. Yes. We raised it with them, but it wasn't our area.

9 Q. No. So you were directing the question to the people

10 whose area it was, weren't you?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Thank you. Now, you say in this part of your

13 statement -- and perhaps we could have that on the

14 screen, please, now: RNI-841-275, paragraph 13

15 (displayed) -- that Mrs Nelson's case was a high profile

16 one, and that's the penultimate line at the bottom of

17 the page, do you see:

18 "Mrs Nelson's was clearly a high profile case"?

19 Was that something that was obvious to you, do you

20 think, as early as this, in May 1997?

21 A. Well, yes, the very fact there was an international

22 development -- interest, the very fact that she was

23 a solicitor who felt under threat for her life, yes.

24 And I suppose, going back to what had happened to

25 another solicitor, yes, it would be considered a high

 

 

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1 profile case. And I think -- I'm not quite sure, but

2 I'm sure -- this is maybe not accurate, but I'm sure

3 this was either in the media perhaps at this time.

4 1997, the whole kind of Garvaghy Road parades, all that

5 was very high profile and Rosemary Nelson's name would

6 have been linked with that. So, yes, she would have

7 been considered high profile.

8 Q. But it is right to say that, as you saw it, her profile,

9 Rosemary Nelson's profile, increased during the years

10 that you were in the police complaints division from

11 this point, from May 1997?

12 A. Oh, yes. I mean -- but it is not something that you

13 kind of thought about or -- it didn't affect what you

14 were doing.

15 Q. It didn't affect your approach to the correspondence,

16 you are saying?

17 A. No, but you were sensitive to -- you know, anything that

18 you wrote that could get out into the public domain.

19 You always remained sensitive about that because, you

20 know, NIO -- there were cases of NIO correspondence

21 getting out into the papers.

22 Q. You told us a little earlier that all policing issues

23 were regarded as sensitive and presumably that meant

24 they had to be handled carefully, but doesn't it follow

25 from what you have said that a high profile matter in

 

 

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1 that area would have to be approached with even greater

2 care?

3 A. Well, I suppose that is logical, but a low profile case

4 could turn into a high profile case very easily. So you

5 were sensitive, I think, always.

6 Q. But this was one, as far as you were concerned anyway,

7 that never had a low profile?

8 A. No.

9 Q. Can I just ask you to look at a document to the NIO to

10 find out whether it actually came your way? And it may

11 be that it didn't. This is at RNI-101-024 (displayed)

12 and it is a letter from Command Secretariat, dated

13 22 May. It is not addressed to you; the civil servant's

14 name has been redacted at top left, and it is addressed

15 not to POB but to SPOB?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Is there anything about the letter that makes you

18 believe you saw it at this time, the time we have been

19 talking about in May 1997?

20 A. No, no, I don't recognise it, but that could be my

21 memory. But I don't recognise that, no.

22 Q. You remember that the original IPL memorandum was

23 addressed both to SPOB and to POB?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Now, in accordance with what you would expect, would

 

 

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1 both sections or departments be dealing with it and

2 heading off and producing their own responses to the

3 official at the IPL?

4 A. As I said, if there was coordination, it wasn't by me,

5 and perhaps -- you know, perhaps Simon -- but I don't

6 know and, unfortunately, I do not have a copy of my

7 part -- input to IPL. So I don't know what went to them

8 from us or from me or Simon or whoever.

9 Q. Can we look at the next stage then, just moving on from

10 that, which comes at RNI-101-036 (displayed) and this,

11 I hope you will agree, is addressed to you and it is

12 dated 6 June. It is under the same heading that you had

13 used in your letter of 30 April, which we saw went to

14 Command Secretariat, and it says:

15 "I refer to your correspondence of 30 April. I can

16 now advise you that Ms Nelson has to date ignored

17 requests to come forward for interview in this

18 ICPC-supervised investigation."

19 You may not be able to help here, but based on the

20 correspondence we have been looking at so far, what did

21 you understand him to be referring to there: the

22 ICPC-supervised investigation?

23 A. The ICPC were obviously involved in supervising the

24 complaints investigation, so ...

25 Q. Well, you mentioned a little earlier the Lawyers

 

 

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1 Alliance for Justice, Mr Lynch -- do you remember him?

2 -- and his letter?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. We can see that at RNI-101-028. (displayed). It is

5 dated 13 March. Do you think by this stage, by the

6 stage the Command Secretariat are writing to you at the

7 beginning of June, you would have known about this --

8 what became a complaint arising out of this letter?

9 A. I would say so by -- I don't see anything in writing

10 here but -- to confirm that, but I'm sure by way of

11 telephone conversations.

12 Q. You think you would have been aware of it?

13 A. I think so, yes, I think so.

14 Q. The reason I ask is because we are also trying to

15 reconstruct what may have happened and trying to find

16 out where things should appear in files. Thank you.

17 Anyway, going back to the Command Secretariat

18 letter, RNI-101-036 (displayed), he refers to the

19 ICPC-supervised investigation. He says there is no

20 evidence other than that in the letter to support the

21 contention the threats have recently become more

22 insistent and ominous, et cetera. Then he makes

23 a suggestion about what Rosemary Nelson should do, and

24 says:

25 "I trust that this information is of some assistance

 

 

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1 to you."

2 There wasn't any assistance to you in this letter

3 about advice on personal protection, was there?

4 A. I know in my witness statement I was asked, you know, on

5 the back of this letter why I didn't follow up on the

6 personal protection and I answered directly to that

7 question.

8 But if it had have been asked differently -- in

9 other words, was I satisfied that this letter covered

10 that area -- I would have answered differently and I

11 would have said, well, what the police were really

12 saying was, you know, there is no evidence that

13 Mrs Nelson was under threat. And the reason -- I think

14 when I made my statement, I hadn't perhaps linked in

15 with the memo another memo which I think supports what I

16 am saying now, which is one RNI-105-036 -- oh, gosh

17 maybe that's not it. Oh, yes, it is, sorry.

18 In paragraph 1 -- you know, I'm basically saying,

19 you know, I have asked the police about

20 Rosemary Nelson's personal protection and I'm coming

21 back to you now because I have only received their

22 response.

23 So obviously, you know, I think I -- at that time

24 I read that as, you know, the response to the issue of

25 personal protection; in other words -- you know, there

 

 

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1 is no threat that we are aware of other than what the

2 Senator has relayed to us and, therefore, you know, why

3 would we be talking to her about her personal

4 protection.

5 Q. Well, thank you for drawing that to our attention. We

6 will come on to it in a moment because that is the memo

7 you sent back to the IPL at RNI-105-036.

8 But can I just remind you what the memo you yourself

9 sent to Command Secretariat asks, which is:

10 "Can you please let me know if the police have

11 discussed with Mrs Nelson anything to do with her

12 personal protection in light of what the Senator refers

13 to as threats which have recently become more insistent

14 and ominous causing Mrs Nelson to fear for her safety."

15 Now, it doesn't tell you, does it, this letter,

16 whether police have discussed with Mrs Nelson anything

17 to do with her personal protection?

18 A. That's correct, but I think what they have said is -- or

19 you could interpret that as, you know, if we don't

20 consider there is a threat to Rosemary Nelson, why would

21 we be discussing her personal protection.

22 Q. Indeed. Those are words that you are now reading in to

23 this letter, but it is not what it actually says, is it?

24 A. Into this letter?

25 Q. Yes.

 

 

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1 A. Well, I think from the memo -- well, without the memo

2 that I sent to IPL on 8 July, I would probably have to

3 agree with you. But obviously -- I'm sure it wasn't

4 myself alone who decided at that time that that was an

5 inappropriate response -- or a response, you know, to

6 the issue -- you know, if there isn't a threat or we

7 have no evidence of a threat, why would we be raising --

8 they are going to say why would we be raising.

9 But that would be what you would take out of that:

10 there is no need to discuss personal protection if there

11 isn't evidence to support that she is under threat.

12 I do appreciate what you are saying and I think when

13 I was asked the first time in my witness statement, and

14 I would say to you it was a question I answered

15 directly, why didn't I follow up on it, but at that time

16 perhaps I hadn't, you know, looked sufficiently at the

17 memo. And obviously they have recently provided

18 a response in relation to what I have outlined in the

19 first paragraph, which was about personal protection.

20 So at that time that was a considered view. I am

21 sure I'm not alone by myself, otherwise -- you know, if

22 we had -- if that wasn't the interpretation, we wouldn't

23 have let that go.

24 Q. Another way of looking at it, if that wasn't the

25 interpretation, it was obvious that there wasn't any

 

 

134


1 answer at all?

2 A. But I think my memo of 8 July -- I think that confirms

3 that was the interpretation. I mean, I have said that

4 they have provided a response directly in relation to

5 the issue of personal protection, and although you can

6 look at that now and say, oh, in light of what happened,

7 but at the time I think oddly enough that confirms that

8 the police were saying that they didn't consider there

9 was a threat.

10 Q. Sir, would that be a convenient moment?

11 THE CHAIRMAN: Certainly. We will have a quarter of an hour

12 break.

13 (3.30 pm)

14 (Short break)

15 (3.45 pm)

16 MR PHILLIPS: Now, we were discussing whether the

17 Command Secretariat response at RNI-101-036 -- if we can

18 have that on the screen, please (displayed) -- dealt

19 with the request you had made on 22 May about whether

20 police had discussed anything to do with

21 Rosemary Nelson's personal protection, and you were

22 explaining what your answer to that was in the light of

23 the later memo sent on 8 July to your colleague in the

24 IPL.

25 Can I ask you now to look at your statement and

 

 

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1 paragraphs 15 and 16 at RNI-841-276 (displayed). Now,

2 first of all you address in paragraph 15, the first two

3 documents we looked at and the Command Secretariat's

4 response to your letter of 30 April, and then you refer

5 later in the paragraph, do you see, to your note of

6 22 May?

7 So all those documents are referred to by you in

8 this paragraph of your statement, and the relevant

9 sentence begins five lines from the bottom, and you say:

10 "The letter ..."

11 That is the letter from Command Secretariat:

12 "... did not state if the police had spoken to

13 Mrs Nelson about her personal protection as I had asked

14 them to update me on in my letter dated 22 May."

15 Now, that was your view of the matter, wasn't it,

16 when you made your statement?

17 A. I mean, not as factually correct in that they don't

18 actually mention the words -- you know, they don't

19 actually say we did or we did not speak to Mrs Nelson

20 about her personal protection. But, I mean, it is clear

21 from what they do say that they didn't consider there

22 had been a threat.

23 Q. But that is not something you pointed out in this

24 paragraph of your statement, is it?

25 A. No, that's quite right. I think at the time I was asked

 

 

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1 a direct question, why I didn't follow up and hadn't --

2 to be honest, I hadn't looked, obviously, well enough at

3 that memo of 8 July.

4 Q. Although in fact it is referred to by you in the next

5 paragraph, isn't it?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. So it looks, doesn't it, as though this is an

8 interpretation of the Command Secretariat's letter that

9 has occurred to you after you made your witness

10 statement?

11 A. Because I looked more clearly at my memo to IPL.

12 Without a doubt, it says that I considered at that time

13 that this was a response in relation to personal

14 protection. I mean -- I mean, it is actually in writing

15 and, yes, I'm sorry, if I probably -- I just didn't

16 catch on to that, I have to say, when I made in witness

17 statement. What I said was in a direct response to

18 why -- what was it was put to me? -- "Why did you not

19 follow up? And I said, oh -- what I said in my

20 statement.

21 But if they had have asked, "Do you think what the

22 police had said was adequate to what you had asked?" I

23 would have probably given a different -- it depends what

24 you are asked, how you reply.

25 Q. Indeed. Can we look together at the memo you have just

 

 

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1 referred to of 8 July? It is at RNI-105-036

2 (displayed).

3 Now, can I just ask you first of all a question

4 about the date of this letter?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. You had sought a response from Command Secretariat and

7 the ICPC on 30 April, remember?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. You had chased up and had a conversation on 22 May and

10 their response, as we have just been seeing, is dated

11 6 June?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. Can you help with why it is another month before this

14 goes to your colleagues at IPL?

15 A. Sorry, what goes to my colleagues at IPL?

16 Q. This document, the document we have up on the screen,

17 the 8 July 1997 memo?

18 A. Oh, right. Well, I think -- and I can't remember, but I

19 don't think I ever had any -- I have no -- I don't

20 remember ever speaking to IPL or having any other

21 correspondence from them other than their memo of

22 22 April. So -- and I don't know what issue from them,

23 you know, for the Ambassador to sign off on.

24 So I initiated this letter to say, "Is it now too

25 late -- my reference to, you know, dead in the water is

 

 

138


1 administratively, you know, is it too late now for you

2 to follow up with this, you know, new information, or do

3 you want to let this go because I hadn't seen what had

4 issued from the Ambassador.

5 So this is me being proactive to ask IPL some new

6 information here, do you want to -- do you want to use

7 it. I didn't know if the Ambassador was going to, you

8 know, write a second letter. I had no knowledge, I do

9 remember that, of what had issued from IPL.

10 Q. Presumably what you did know was you hadn't responded

11 before this date, on 8 July, to the minute from IPL of

12 22 April?

13 A. I don't think so because the first paragraph says:

14 "Police division provided part input to your minute

15 of ..."

16 So obviously something had gone to them, and

17 I know -- I know through other means now that the

18 Ambassador had -- a first letter had issued, I think, on

19 20 May. So, you know, something had gone to IPL, but

20 I have no copy of it.

21 Q. But even if that's right, there was obviously more to be

22 said presumably to IPL, otherwise you wouldn't have

23 troubled to send them this minute?

24 A. Well, I have no memory of -- and as I say, there is

25 nothing on file here to show what contact I had with

 

 

139


1 IPL, but I can't remember it.

2 Q. No.

3 A. I'm sorry.

4 Q. And could you look, please, at the heading of this memo?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. "Correspondence from Senator Robert Torricelli on the

7 issue of personal protection measures for

8 Rosemary Nelson."

9 Do you see that?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. And this is a memo issuing from you, isn't it?

12 A. Yes, it is.

13 Q. What does the memo tell IPL about personal protection

14 measures for Rosemary Nelson, please?

15 A. Well, paragraph 3 is saying that Mrs Nelson has, to

16 date, ignored requests to come forward for interview.

17 They have no evidence to support what the Senator has

18 written about threats. So it is basically saying -- it

19 doesn't use the words "personal protection" because

20 really what -- I have -- I had lifted really what the

21 police have said.

22 Q. You have lifted there, from paragraph 3 down, what

23 Command Secretariat had said to you in their letter of

24 a month before on 6 June?

25 A. That's right, yes.

 

 

140


1 Q. And that letter didn't say anything in terms about

2 personal protection measures for her, did it?

3 A. No, it didn't mention personal protection because from

4 what the police had stated, they didn't understand that

5 there was a threat against Rosemary Nelson. So, you

6 know, why would you discuss personal protection if there

7 was no threat?

8 Q. Is that a point that you make in this memo?

9 A. It is a very carefully worded memo, so I hadn't stated

10 that, no.

11 Q. Who would have been involved in drafting it?

12 A. Again, I would have cleared it, I'm sure, with my line

13 manager.

14 Q. Simon Rogers?

15 A. Well, I can't remember if that is what I did, but that

16 was how things were done in the branch.

17 Q. Can I just ask you to look at paragraph 2 in this? You

18 say first of all:

19 "They ..."

20 I assume that refers to the police?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. "... have only recently provided a response."

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. That must be a response to the request you have referred

25 to in the first paragraph, isn't it?

 

 

141


1 A. Yes.

2 Q. Of 22 April. And the response there is the 6 June

3 letter we looked at together, isn't it?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. That is the very recent, or recent response, and then

6 you say:

7 "You may at this very late stage think that the

8 issue is dead in the water."

9 Now, what do you mean by that?

10 A. I know it was incredibly badly worded.

11 Q. You said earlier it was very carefully drafted. Which

12 is it?

13 A. That is my own use of -- you know, if I had -- that is

14 my own speak, if you like. Administratively, that is my

15 own speak to say, you know, I presume the Ambassador has

16 responded, do you want to follow up, you know, and this

17 outstanding matter of personal protection, which wasn't

18 raised in the Torricelli letter, so anyway -- is this

19 useful to you; in other words, is the Ambassador -- you

20 know, will he follow up with another letter. That is my

21 speak. It is very badly worded.

22 Q. Was the point this: that by this stage, on 8 July,

23 a very long time indeed had elapsed since the original

24 letter from the Senator of 16 April and you were

25 concerned that probably things had moved on, and that as

 

 

142


1 a result of that delay the issue had passed or become

2 dead in the water?

3 A. Sorry, would you repeat that, please?

4 Q. Well, the letter from the Senator was dated 15 April?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. This memorandum is dated 8 July?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Were you hinting in that expression, "dead in the

9 water", that it had taken so long for you to provide

10 a response that you expected the matter had already

11 moved on? It was otherwise too late to be dealt with?

12 A. Well, for me this was the one outstanding response that

13 I obviously hadn't -- I mean, somewhere along the line

14 I must have -- something must have been provided from

15 our branch to IPL because they wrote -- the Ambassador

16 wrote a letter to Torricelli, I think, dated 20 May.

17 So I have only received the response on 6 June. So

18 you know, yes, what I'm saying basically is is there any

19 good -- administratively, is this -- are you going to

20 write out -- or is the Ambassador going to write out

21 separately now on this issue? I don't mean the issue of

22 the threats or the complaints -- would be dead in the

23 water. It would be an administrative link there.

24 Sorry, I probably haven't made that very clear.

25 Q. If we look at paragraph 3 together, there, the first

 

 

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1 thing you deal with is that Mrs Nelson has, to date,

2 ignored requests to come forward for interview in the

3 ICPC-supervised investigation. Those were very much the

4 words used by the Command Secretariat officer, weren't

5 they?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And they related, as you have already said to me, to the

8 complaints investigation that was ongoing by this time?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. Now, then in paragraph 4, having repeated the suggestion

11 made by that officer that the Senator should ask

12 Rosemary Nelson to make contact with the Complaints and

13 Discipline branch to enable her complaints to be fully

14 investigated, over the page at RNI-105-037 (displayed),

15 you say this:

16 "It is highly unlikely that Mrs Nelson will

17 cooperate, but at least from the point of view of

18 informing this senator, we can take the line that the

19 police are taking the issue seriously and the onus is on

20 Mrs Nelson to cooperate."

21 Now, how did you form the view that Rosemary Nelson

22 was highly unlikely to cooperate?

23 A. This memo is dated 8 July.

24 Q. Yes.

25 A. And by that stage, whether by telephone conversation

 

 

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1 perhaps, I -- I'm sure I was told about the number of

2 attempts that were made to get Mrs Nelson to be

3 interviewed. So, again, you know, in hindsight I

4 shouldn't -- I don't know why I say highly unlikely --

5 likely that Mrs Nelson will cooperate on the basis of

6 what I presume I have heard.

7 Q. Certainly the Command Secretariat officer had told you

8 that she had to date ignored requests to come forward

9 for interview in relation to the complaint, but that was

10 about the past. This is a prediction by you, isn't it,

11 about the future?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. And what I'm asking you is what the basis for it was?

14 A. Well, I think, you know, based on what had happened

15 previously, it looked -- and you know, I obviously

16 regret using "highly unlikely", but it was unlikely that

17 Mrs Nelson was going to cooperate and, you know ...

18 Q. But all of this is in the context of the complaints

19 investigation, ie her cooperation was turning up to

20 interview in the complaints thing, wasn't it?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Yes. And as I understand it, what you are saying is we

23 can tell the Senator that they are taking the issue

24 seriously, in the sense that they asked her to come for

25 interview, and it is then, as it were, down to her if

 

 

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1 she doesn't turn up?

2 A. Yes, that would be ...

3 THE CHAIRMAN: May I ask you this: were those, as far as you

4 remember, your words or were they words put into the

5 memo by your line manager, possibly Mr Simon Rogers?

6 A. I'm sorry, I couldn't -- I can't remember. They are

7 possibly my words. I don't think Simon would have been

8 so -- no, I would say they are probably my words.

9 THE CHAIRMAN: Thank you.

10 A. But if it was cleared -- which, as I say, I think

11 everything was -- it wasn't picked up on.

12 MR PHILLIPS: In fairness to you, if the system had been

13 followed that you have already told us about, your draft

14 would have been submitted to somebody higher up the line

15 than you and it would only have been issued if it had

16 been approved?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Thank you. And that applies to internal NIO material as

19 much, presumably, as it does to external correspondence?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. Thank you. Now, can we just move on, please, to the

22 next matter in this story that comes to your attention,

23 and that is the Colin Duffy matter? And we can see

24 a note from you about this, at RNI-105-053.506

25 (displayed).

 

 

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1 Here, we see it is your note, 17 July, "Colin Duffy,

2 ICPC involvement", and it records the conversation that

3 you had with Jennifer Mitchell of the Commission,

4 doesn't it?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. And you were asking, it seems from the first sentence,

7 whether the Commission had received a complaint in

8 relation to the new case?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And this arose, as we can see later the paragraph,

11 didn't it, out of the murder of the two police officers

12 in Lurgan?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Now, you refer in the second paragraph to the Commission

15 receiving a letter from the Lawyers Alliance, the

16 organisation we talked about a little earlier, in

17 relation to alleged threats to the life of

18 Rosemary Nelson, Colin Duffy's solicitor, and also

19 raising issues about his detention and aspects of his

20 treatment.

21 Now, is that something, reading this note, that she,

22 Jennifer Mitchell, told you?

23 A. Yes, I would think so.

24 Q. It reads like that, doesn't it?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

147


1 Q. Yes. Then you continue:

2 "The letter has been passed on to the Complaints and

3 Discipline Department this week. Jennifer Mitchell is

4 waiting to hear if they are going to raise the

5 references to Colin Duffy as a new complaint."

6 Then it says:

7 "In addition to ..."

8 Then there is a name redacted:

9 "... [that person's] submission in relation to

10 a Secretary of State's minister's case, police division

11 have been asked to provide part input to a 'treat

12 official', which CJPD ..."

13 What does that stand for, please?

14 A. Criminal Justice Policy Department.

15 Q. Thank you. That is within the NIO?

16 A. Yes, it is.

17 Q. "... is leading on. I've asked RUC for a response just

18 in case there have been some new developments."

19 To be clear then, reading through all the

20 acronyms and shorthand, there are two letters in the

21 process of being dealt with, as I understand it. There

22 is a minister's case letter and there is also a "treat

23 official" letter; is that right?

24 A. Yes, that would appear to be right.

25 Q. Thank you. Can I ask you first, looking at the

 

 

148


1 beginning of this memo, was it usual for you to get, as

2 it were, early information about a complaint in the way

3 that you appear to have done in relation to these Duffy

4 matters in the first paragraph?

5 A. I'm trying to work out why I raised it at that stage,

6 but I'm sorry, I'm not quite sure.

7 Q. No.

8 A. But something must have prompted me, but I can't

9 remember, I'm sorry.

10 Q. Can I ask you this question: whose is the handwriting on

11 the right-hand side of the page?

12 A. I think it is Christine Collins, who was head of

13 division.

14 Q. She was head of the police division?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Just looking at the second paragraph again, please:

17 "The ICPC had received ..."

18 Do you see that, referring to a letter?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Can I ask you to look, please, at RNI-101-051

21 (displayed)? It is a letter of 30 June from that

22 organisation.

23 Do you remember seeing this letter at the time?

24 A. No, I do not have a copy of it.

25 Q. No. But do you remember seeing it?

 

 

149


1 A. No, not at all.

2 Q. The reason I ask is because it is a slightly later

3 Lawyers Alliance letter?

4 A. Right.

5 Q. And rather nearer to the time of the memo we were

6 looking at. But you don't think you saw that?

7 A. I don't remember.

8 Q. No, okay. Can we go back then to RNI-105-053.056

9 (displayed)?

10 Now, looking at the writing, it appears that the

11 note is addressed to you because it is under the heading

12 "Anne", and your note, as we see from the top right-hand

13 corner, was copied to Mrs Collins:

14 "Good, this might be a good case ..."

15 Then reading down:

16 "... because relatively recent and well documented

17 to follow up the 'threat' ..."

18 That word is in inverted commas:

19 "... allegations and try to nail them. Are SPOB

20 doing so, or the ICPC or even the RUC?"

21 Just trying to making sense of that, what was meant

22 to you, when you received this handwritten annotation,

23 do you think, by this being:

24 "... a good case to follow up the 'threat'

25 allegations and try to nail them"?

 

 

150


1 A. I really -- I don't know, to be honest. Well, the

2 threat is obviously Rosemary Nelson, but I don't know --

3 I can't remember where Christine was coming from on

4 that.

5 Q. Do you think that the threat allegations referred to

6 were those in relation to Rosemary Nelson, which had

7 been referred to by you?

8 A. Yes, I do.

9 Q. Yes. So what do you think she meant by "try to nail

10 them"?

11 A. I don't know. I think it would be better asking

12 Christine. You know --

13 Q. The reason I ask you, you see, is because you obviously

14 did know at the time, or you thought you did know

15 because you responded by saying:

16 "Christine, the attached, I think, answers your

17 query."

18 Can you remember what that referred to?

19 A. All right, "the attached". Possibly it could have been

20 the police memo from the 6th -- I mean, there is no

21 attachment. I do not have an attachment to that, but I

22 could speculate it was perhaps the police memo -- or

23 response of 6 June, but I don't know for a fact.

24 Q. Might it have been your memorandum to IPL of 8 July, for

25 example?

 

 

151


1 A. Possibly, possibly.

2 Q. The one we were looking at a little earlier?

3 A. Possibly.

4 Q. But the thing I wanted to get your help with was this,

5 to see if you can help -- and obviously we can ask

6 Mrs Collins in due course. She seems to think that the

7 job of nailing the allegations might have been done by

8 SPOB. That is the other part of the organisation. Or

9 it might have been done by the ICPC, or even, as she

10 puts it, by the police?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Does that help you with what she meant by the words

13 "nail them"? No?

14 A. No, I'm sorry.

15 Q. Do you remember, at any other stage in relation to any

16 other complaint, being asked what could be done to nail

17 them?

18 A. No, absolutely not. Threat allegations. Well,

19 I presume she means try and get to the bottom of it.

20 Q. So in trying to get to the bottom of threat allegations,

21 that was something that either you or SPOB or the

22 Commission or the police could equally well do?

23 A. I don't see how our administrative branch could get to,

24 you know, to the bottom of allegations. I mean, surely

25 that is in the whole context of the complaint process.

 

 

152


1 So, you know, there is no way I or anybody in the

2 division could get to the bottom of threat allegations.

3 So --

4 Q. That is why I'm asking the question.

5 A. Sorry, yes.

6 Q. You can't shed any more light on that?

7 A. No.

8 Q. Now, there is another document on the next page in the

9 file, RNI-105-053.507 (displayed), and that comes to

10 you, as I understand it, from this organisation whose

11 acronym you explained, CJPD, just a few days after the

12 memo we have been looking at.

13 By now it is 22 July and it refers to US Voice

14 letter. What sort of organisation was US Voice, can you

15 remember?

16 A. I don't know if it was an Irish American organisation or

17 a human rights, but obviously they were writing in the

18 same context as all the other international

19 organisations. US Voice? They may be Irish American,

20 but I don't know for sure.

21 Q. Can we have a look at a couple of letters which you had

22 to deal with, as I understand it, and the first is

23 RNI-105-053.504 (displayed), which is addressed to

24 Mo Mowlam and Jack Strand. I think that is probably

25 Jack Straw, who was then, I think, the Home Secretary.

 

 

153


1 Do you see that?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. And after a brief word of welcome to the new Government,

4 the letter, signed by Jean Forest, deals with the

5 question of miscarriages of justice. Then you see in

6 the penultimate paragraph, she refers to Rosemary Nelson

7 again:

8 "The solicitor, Rosemary Nelson, who has been

9 threatened with the same fate as Pat Finucane."

10 And then the writer talks about an attempt to murder

11 Colin Duffy and asks for official enquiries to be made

12 into serious police misconduct.

13 Then turning the page to RNI-105-053.505

14 (displayed), another missive from US Voice, and it

15 refers to an incident on the Garvaghy Road where she

16 alleged that she had been assaulted in the first

17 paragraph. And then, again, in the penultimate

18 paragraph, you see it refers to the continual harassment

19 of his barrister, Rosemary Nelson.

20 Now, did it fall to you to deal with these messages

21 or these letters from the US Voice?

22 A. Yes, sorry -- it is clear US Voice is for human rights

23 in Northern Ireland. Sorry, I should have made the

24 connection there...

25 Yes, I replied to Jean Forest twice, I think.

 

 

154


1 Q. And how was it that these letters came to be directed to

2 your complaints section, do you think?

3 A. Again, it all is connected with complaints of misconduct

4 by police officers.

5 Q. I appreciate it is not your decision about allocation,

6 but you think it was decided, was it, that these should

7 join the previous matters you have been dealing with and

8 be dealt with on the basis that they disclose complaints

9 against the police?

10 A. I think so.

11 Q. Again, I don't want to go through this in enormous

12 detail, but will see what they both also disclose is

13 allegations of assault, allegations of threat, a threat

14 to life because of the reference to Patrick Finucane,

15 but so far as you were concerned, it fell to you, did

16 it, to treat them as though they were complaints about

17 the police?

18 A. Well, I wouldn't -- you know, it came to me to provide

19 a response. So, yes, somebody decided that that was --

20 yes -- and on the basis of what the letters raised, you

21 know, although this time Colin Duffy -- you know, it was

22 similar, certainly in the Rosemary Nelson material, to

23 what was ongoing with other correspondence.

24 Q. Thank you. Now, we can see your opening response at

25 RNI-105-054 (displayed) and it is dated 28 July. It is

 

 

155


1 addressed to Jean Forest.

2 You thank her for the two letters. You say they

3 have been recently faxed to the Secretary of State for

4 Northern Ireland and the Home Secretary and passed to

5 you for reply. Then you set out the circumstances of

6 Colin Duffy's arrest and charging in the criminal

7 proceedings that are going on.

8 Then you say in the third paragraph:

9 "I have asked the RUC to comment on the allegations

10 you made about the targeting of Mr Duffy and the threats

11 against Mrs Nelson. I'll write to you as soon as I have

12 received their response."

13 Do you see that?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. So, as I understand it, remembering what you told us

16 about your correspondence, here you are giving an answer

17 to one of the issues raised in the letter and you are

18 assuring the correspondent, in this case Ms Forest, that

19 you have sought further information and you will get

20 back to her as and when you receive it?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. And the comments you had sought, as you told her at any

23 rate, were about the targeting of Mr Duffy and the

24 threats against Mrs Nelson?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

156


1 Q. So those, presumably, were the matters which you felt,

2 based on your reading of those two letters, you needed

3 more information on from the RUC?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Now, just in fairness because we are displaying this

6 letter on the screen, can I take it that that isn't your

7 handwriting?

8 A. No. The "I won't hold my breath"?

9 Q. Yes.

10 A. No.

11 Q. I suspect it is Jean Forest, but I don't know.

12 It looks as though you were as good as your word and

13 acted on the assurance, and we can see that at the next

14 page, RNI-105-055 (displayed). And you wrote to the

15 Command Secretariat on 28 July under the heading

16 "Alleged death threats by RUC". Then you made

17 a reference to previous correspondence and their

18 reference, and you began by saying:

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

20 news lately, not least in connection with the

21 Colin Duffy case."

22 So her profile in the media was considerable at this

23 stage in the summer of 1997, was it?

24 A. Yes, yes, it was.

25 Q. And that presumably would have been not only in relation

 

 

157


1 to the Duffy case, but also the Garvaghy Road matters

2 that you mentioned a little earlier?

3 A. Very much.

4 Q. Yes. And then you start with your questions, and your

5 questions relate to the ICPC investigation. Do you see?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And you say:

8 "I'm apparently dealing with a number of letters

9 about the complaint and should be grateful for

10 clarification on a number of points involving this case.

11 What exactly is the nature of the complaint? What is

12 the current stage of the investigation? I understand

13 that Ms Nelson has refused to cooperate."

14 What steps have been taken to encourage her,

15 et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Then you sign off

16 with:

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

18 much background on the above issues as soon as possible

19 as the case has a high profile and needs careful

20 handling."

21 Now, it is right, isn't it, that in that letter to

22 Command Secretariat you don't ask for them to comment on

23 the allegations made by Jean Forest about the targeting

24 of Colin Duffy and the threats against Rosemary Nelson,

25 do you?

 

 

158


1 A. Not in those words. The way in the letter to

2 Jean Forest, my letter to Jean Forest on 28 July --

3 I mean, I think I have picked up on wording from her

4 letter, her letter of -- well, there is no date on this,

5 but one of her letters, the very last paragraph is

6 "Colin Duffy is clearly a target". So, you know,

7 those -- I have used words from her letter, I think.

8 Q. But what you say to her is:

9 "I have asked the RUC to comment on the allegations

10 you have made about the targeting of Mr Duffy and the

11 threats against Mrs Nelson"?

12 A. Yes.

13 Q. What I'm suggesting to you -- see whether you accept

14 this -- is that in the letter we are looking at

15 RNI-105-055 (displayed), you do not in fact ask them to

16 comment on either of those points, do you?

17 A. Well, indirectly I do because, you know, this is all

18 about complaints about alleged misconduct by police. So

19 you know, the complaints -- that is what the complaints

20 are all about.

21 I haven't lifted that language again directly, and

22 said, you know -- you know -- but that's what the

23 complaints process -- or the complaints are about. It

24 is about these issues, and I mean -- so in the body of

25 that letter I have outlined, you know, what is happening

 

 

159


1 in relation to the complaints process and that is my

2 job, you know, that was my role.

3 Q. Yes, but you didn't refer the matter to others who might

4 have been able to comment or assist on targeting more

5 threats, did you? You simply asked a series of

6 questions about your part of it, which was the

7 complaints part?

8 A. Maybe, but to me the complaint, you know, raises -- are

9 about those issues. I don't know. You don't agree,

10 obviously.

11 Q. It is not for me to agree or disagree, I am afraid.

12 Okay. Well, let's move on, if we may. You also

13 sought information on the next day, I think, from the

14 Complaints Commission and that is at RNI-105-057

15 (displayed). Can I just ask you this question: it would

16 presumably have been possible to obtain a complete

17 report about all of the complaints, the complaints that

18 you say were your business, from the Commission,

19 wouldn't it?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. There is no need whatsoever to ask the same questions or

22 the detailed questions we have seen of

23 Command Secretariat, you would have gone straight to

24 Jennifer Mitchell or somebody else at the Commission,

25 wouldn't you?

 

 

160


1 A. Well, I think it was always useful to -- I always, I

2 think, asked both organisations because they reflected

3 different aspects of the complaints. So --

4 Q. So we are looking here then at the two letters to the

5 two sides, as it were, of the complaints process: the

6 police side on the one hand and the Commission side on

7 the other?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Thank you. Now, in this letter you go a little further

10 than you had so far on the question of profile because

11 you see in the third paragraph, you say:

12 "This undoubtedly will remain one of those high

13 profile cases which will run and run."

14 So presumably that is a judgment you have now

15 arrived at based on what you had experienced so far by

16 way of the interest and correspondence generated by this

17 issue?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. It wasn't going to go away?

20 A. It wasn't going to go away.

21 Q. There was interest from abroad, there was interest from

22 NGOs and it was beginning to make, wasn't it, some form

23 of political impact?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Can we see what answers you got in response to these

 

 

161


1 requests of yours? We can see the answer from

2 Command Secretariat, I think, at RNI-101-061

3 (displayed). Do you see? Addressed to you, dated

4 27 August?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Here, the writer, who I think was the Chief

7 Superintendent whose cipher we saw a little earlier --

8 it is on the next page if you have a hard copy there,

9 RNI-101-062 (displayed). He tells you right at the

10 outset that the exact nature of the complaint made is as

11 set out on attached correspondence from Mr Lynch, and we

12 discussed before the letter, the original letter, from

13 him of 13 March.

14 Can I just ask you again about this to try and see

15 how this came across your desk? Do you think that this

16 may have been the first time you received a copy of the

17 Lawyers Alliance letter of 13 March?

18 A. That was the Lynch letter?

19 Q. Yes, that was the first Lynch letter.

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. If you want to have a look at one, there are many in the

22 bundle, but there is one at RNI-101-012 (displayed).

23 A. You see, the copy I have there is nothing on it to show

24 that I actually -- you know, there is nothing to ask me

25 to action it or -- so I can't really say when I received

 

 

162


1 that letter.

2 I certainly do recognise it, but as I say, normally

3 with a letter like that, there would be -- "Anne, for

4 action" or whatever. But I'm sorry, I can't tell you

5 when I first saw that letter.

6 Q. Well, the reason I ask you is, as I say, it is not

7 clear, at least to me, from the file, but of course

8 given that your section was in the business of

9 complaints, it presumably was important for you to know,

10 given the questions you have been asking, what the

11 nature, the particular nature of the complaint

12 allegation was?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. And as and when you received the attached

15 correspondence -- it looks as though at the latest it

16 would have been on 27 August -- if we look at

17 RNI-101-032 (displayed), you see very familiar

18 language -- I mean, familiar from the Torricelli

19 letter -- because Mr Lynch wrote about threats and

20 intimidation and, indeed, used very, very similar, if

21 not exactly the same language to the effect that the

22 threats had become more insistent and ominous of late.

23 Do you see that?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Well, now, going back to the letter of 27 August on the

 

 

163


1 right-hand side of the screen, here the Chief

2 Superintendent deals in detail with the progress, or

3 lack of it, in the investigation and the fact that there

4 hadn't been cooperation. And just turning the page, it

5 says that:

6 "No witnesses have been interviewed. Mrs Nelson has

7 ignored a request for permission to be given to

8 interview her client, Colin Duffy. No other witnesses

9 have been interviewed. Mr Lynch's allegations largely

10 consist of hearsay, rumour and innuendo, mostly of

11 a very general nature."

12 So that was the response you got from

13 Command Secretariat. Did it, do you think, occur to

14 you, despite the content of your own letter to them, to

15 ask for information about threats or what was said to

16 have been the campaign of harassment against

17 Colin Duffy?

18 A. So that is against Colin Duffy, isn't it? I'm not sure

19 I follow that.

20 Q. I'm sorry?

21 A. Sorry, would you repeat that?

22 Q. Yes. Do you remember at the end of your letter to

23 Jean Forest, your first letter to her, you say that you

24 had asked for information from the RUC in relation to

25 two issues?

 

 

164


1 A. Oh, yes, yes. I'm not sure in relation to Colin Duffy

2 that I meant -- I mean, when I look at that now --

3 I mean, targeting could -- I take it from her letter --

4 Jean Forest's letter -- is in relation to -- another

5 word might be "harassment".

6 I'm not sure that it means the same as

7 Rosemary Nelson; you know, threats.

8 Q. No, indeed. You said to her specifically you were going

9 to ask for information about both topics, didn't you?

10 A. Yes.

11 Q. So what I'm trying to ascertain from you is that when

12 you got this letter, which was in response to your

13 request to the RUC, and it didn't deal with either of

14 those topics, did you, do you think, follow it up to get

15 the comment that you had told Ms Forest you were going

16 to seek?

17 A. Right. The reply from the police is -- you know, of

18 22 August is basically saying, right -- you know,

19 Mrs Nelson has not been cooperating and, you know, even

20 though strenuous efforts have been made and it outlines,

21 you know, what sort of interviews have been offered --

22 and, you know, I think I would like to make a point that

23 in our correspondence we always ask questions in -- you

24 know, there was always something -- you know, what more

25 can be done, you know. Are witnesses going to be

 

 

165


1 called?

2 So I think we were proactive in that and then, you

3 know, the police said -- and the ICPC, it was clear she

4 hadn't cooperated. You know, the process grinds to

5 a halt until somebody cooperates.

6 Q. The complaints process?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Absolutely. We can see what the Chief Superintendent is

9 doing if we display your original letter to

10 Command Secretariat on the left-hand side of the screen,

11 RNI-101-043 (displayed), because in that you asked --

12 and I have shown you this already -- a series of

13 detailed questions about the complaints and their

14 progress, didn't you?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And if we go on to RNI-101-044 (displayed) on the same

17 side of the screen, please. There. There are the

18 remaining questions with bullet points.

19 So he was providing you, wasn't he, in his letter of

20 27 August, with a detailed response to the questions you

21 had asked?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. Right. Moving the story on, it looks as though in the

24 summer of that year there appears, if anything, to have

25 been an increase in NGO and other correspondence from

 

 

166


1 abroad, and we have an example in the files at

2 RNI-831-003/004. Can you look at that, please, briefly?

3 A. Sorry?

4 Q. It should be on the screen, RNI-831-003, and can we have

5 RNI-831-004 (displayed) on the other side, please?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. And this is a letter -- it has been redacted

8 unfortunately, but it is from a New Jersey firm of

9 lawyers, dated 12 August 1997, again addressed to the

10 Home Secretary and the author. It is copied to

11 Edmund Lynch and Rosemary Nelson, as you see on the

12 right-hand side, and taking up complaints and issues

13 about Colin Duffy. And in relation to what is described

14 as his "attorney", if you see in the first paragraph and

15 then making, in the penultimate paragraph on RNI-101-004

16 (displayed), general comments about treatment of

17 attorneys.

18 Now, just standing back from this for a moment, is

19 this an example of the sort of phenomenon in

20 correspondence that you were dealing with by this stage,

21 whereby letters on the same point were sort of thudding

22 in from, in this case, from the United States of

23 America, all requiring a response so that at various

24 points you seem to have had, as you said to

25 Command Secretariat at the end of July, a number of

 

 

167


1 "treat official" letters on the same topic to deal with?

2 A. There was very definitely a pattern developing of

3 correspondence from yes, international correspondents.

4 Q. And within your section, you were dealing with it; is

5 that right?

6 A. Well -- I mean, I wrote the letters, but it was -- you

7 know, it was a joint effort. You know, as I said

8 before, nothing would issue without clearance from

9 Simon.

10 Q. Now, one of the NGO letters that came in at this time

11 was from Amnesty International, and we can see that at

12 RNI-209-168 (displayed). It is dated 21 August. That

13 is in fact a remarkably poor copy. Can we try

14 RNI-101-084 (displayed)? Thank you.

15 Now, this is a very long letter. It goes on to

16 three pages. But in summary, if you look just at the

17 first page, it is on the now familiar theme, you see in

18 the first paragraph: the charging and interrogation,

19 charging and detention and remand of Colin Duffy and the

20 treatment of his solicitor, Rosemary Nelson.

21 Then after a good deal of detail about Mr Duffy's

22 position and his case, it moves on to deal with

23 Rosemary Nelson on the next page, RNI-101-085

24 (displayed). And in the last paragraph of the page,

25 having referred to the UN Special Rapporteur, it deals

 

 

168


1 with the allegations about threats and derogatory

2 remarks being uttered to her clients.

3 But turning to the next page, at RNI-101-086 at the

4 top (displayed), it also raises this question:

5 "Amnesty International is also disturbed to learn

6 about reports that Rosemary Nelson has received death

7 threats relating to her current representation of

8 Colin Duffy. The organisation requests that you provide

9 us with information about what measures are being taken

10 to protect Rosemary Nelson."

11 So this is a letter, as we saw from the first page,

12 which was addressed not to the Home Office or to a civil

13 servant, but to the Secretary of State herself. We can

14 that at RNI-101-084 (displayed).

15 You say in your statement at paragraph 27 -- this is

16 RNI-841-285 (displayed) -- that you think this must have

17 come to you via the private office. That is the fourth

18 line, do you see?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And you say they would have sent it down to police

21 division to draft any kind of response.

22 We can see how you dealt with it at RNI-105-109

23 (displayed). This is another very bad copy, I am

24 afraid, and I can't produce a better one for you, I am

25 afraid. But this, unlike the earlier correspondence we

 

 

169


1 have been looking at, is a minister's case, isn't it?

2 A. Yes.

3 Q. Your letter to Command Secretariat is dated 1 September:

4 "The minister's case referred by

5 Amnesty International on issues relating to the

6 investigation, charging and detention on remand of

7 Colin Duffy and the treatment of his solicitor,

8 Rosemary Nelson."

9 So the title is taken from the first paragraph of

10 the Amnesty letter, isn't it?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And you say:

13 "I realised that I raised queries of a similar

14 nature on the Colin Duffy front on previous occasions."

15 Then you refer to a letter from Command Secretariat:

16 "However, it would be most beneficial if you could

17 provide us with some lines to take on some new issues

18 which Amnesty International have raised. We would then

19 be able to use these to respond to the flow of

20 correspondence that we have had on this case over the

21 past few months."

22 Then it looks as though you had taken the letter and

23 gone through it and, as it were, given numbers to the

24 paragraphs all the way through the letter. Do you see

25 that?

 

 

170


1 A. Yes.

2 Q. And you deal first with the allegations about

3 Colin Duffy. Then the paragraph we looked at, the

4 disparaging remarks about him, and you say that the

5 letter of 6 June -- that is the one we looked at

6 earlier:

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

8 investigation. It would be very helpful, however, to

9 have a line on the comment that officers who came into

10 contact with detainees should be told that disparaging

11 comments about a detainee's lawyer are forbidden."

12 Then turning the page to complete this, there is

13 a reference to paragraph 10, the allegation about

14 a witness. That was another paragraph in the letter.

15 Now, the paragraph, as far as I can see, that you

16 don't ask for comment upon is the paragraph I read out

17 about raising the question: a request for information

18 about what measures were being taken to protect

19 Rosemary Nelson. Do you see that?

20 A. Yes.

21 Q. That's the paragraph -- if we can have it on the

22 right-hand side of the screen, please -- at RNI-101-086

23 (displayed). The top of the third page of the letter,

24 do you see?

25 A. Yes.

 

 

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1 Q. It isn't numbered, but anyway that is paragraph 9 of the

2 letter in which you don't ask for a response from

3 Command Secretariat. Was there any reason for that?

4 A. Well, the police had already informed us that they

5 didn't consider Rosemary Nelson was under threat. So if

6 the police had taken that line, again, you know, what --

7 you know, why would she -- what measures, you know,

8 would be taken to protect her. If you don't believe

9 there was a threat, you wouldn't, you know -- you

10 know --

11 Q. Well, your letter is dated 1 September and the last you

12 had heard about it, you told us, was on 6 June. So are

13 you saying you didn't need to check?

14 A. I think perhaps I hadn't established well enough. You

15 know, our branch was not -- you know, it wasn't -- our

16 role was not to -- you know, about personal protection

17 or assessment of threat levels or any of that. Our role

18 was purely in relation to complaints.

19 So, again, I come back to the fact that the police

20 had told us, you know, that was in the system for the

21 police -- the fact that, you know, people were alleging

22 that Rosemary Nelson was under threat. So that was not

23 our role.

24 Q. But, you see, the letter from Amnesty International

25 raised all sorts of points which had nothing to do with

 

 

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1 complaints, and you ask for comment upon them, don't

2 you?

3 If you look, for instance, at RNI-105-110

4 (displayed), the question you raise there has nothing to

5 do with the complaints allegation. Can we have that on

6 the screen, please, RNI-105-110 (displayed)?

7 That was a question that was raised in relation to

8 the criminal investigation, the witness who went to the

9 police station to make a statement about the shootings

10 was asking you, et cetera, and you say:

11 "I presume that the police have not instigated an

12 investigation ..."

13 Et cetera, et cetera. That wasn't a complaint

14 matter; that was just you picking up a question or issue

15 raised in the Amnesty International letter, wasn't it?

16 A. I'm sorry, I really can't answer that.

17 Q. You see, the question they asked you was about whether

18 steps had been taken to protect, and that was an issue

19 that you yourself had raised, as we saw in May this

20 year, when you asked for information from the police

21 about protection?

22 A. Yes, that was something that we raised.

23 Q. Indeed.

24 A. It wasn't something for our branch.

25 Q. No, but you raised it?

 

 

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1 A. But we raised it, which I think shows that -- you know,

2 we looked outside the box and we were very responsible,

3 but it was not an issue for us.

4 Once the police had come back and said, "We don't

5 consider there is a threat", you know, what more --

6 I just cannot see as a branch, an administrative branch

7 for complaints, what more we could do.

8 Q. Can you help with this question? Can you look at the

9 paragraph at the top of the left-hand side:

10 "The organisation requests that you provide us with

11 information about what measures are being taken to

12 protect Rosemary Nelson"?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. What steps did you take to get an answer?

15 A. As I say, that -- we couldn't answer that as a branch.

16 You know --

17 Q. Did you do anything to refer it to anybody else?

18 A. I don't think so.

19 Q. You were writing --

20 A. At that stage, we had raised the issue of personal

21 protection with the police. That was in the system and

22 we did that, as I say, proactively even though it wasn't

23 our area.

24 And in relation to the complaints side, the police

25 had said -- when they responded indirectly, they said,

 

 

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1 well, we don't see a -- we don't see that she is under

2 threat, we have no evidence to show that. So that --

3 you know, the whole issue of personal protection and --

4 you know -- was not for us.

5 So that is why -- I really wouldn't have raised

6 that -- you know, it was in the police system. Personal

7 protection is for the police. If Rosemary Nelson had

8 raised personal protection with the NIO, we could have

9 referred her to KPPS. But we were an administrative

10 branch for complaints. We had very little -- there was

11 nothing we actually could do.

12 There was nothing -- we relied on other

13 organisations, but I do contest the fact that personal

14 protection lay with our branch, and the fact that

15 Amnesty had raised that in a very long -- you know,

16 a lot of these letters are long, complicated. They

17 involve so many aspects, but we were responsible for

18 complaints and, you know, that is not a complaints issue

19 for an administrative branch in relation to complaints.

20 Personal protection -- as I say, we had proactively

21 raised it with the police. It was up to the police to

22 do the assessments. It was up to -- you know, that was

23 out of our hands.

24 THE CHAIRMAN: Mr Phillips, certainly the stenographer needs

25 a break and probably other people do too.

 

 

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1 MR PHILLIPS: Yes.

2 THE CHAIRMAN: We will adjourn until tomorrow morning.

3 MR PHILLIPS: I fear we probably have between half an hour

4 and 45 minutes to go, I am afraid.

5 THE CHAIRMAN: We will break off now and resume at quarter

6 past 10 in the morning.

7 If you would be good enough, Miss Colville, to be

8 here tomorrow morning. Thank you.

9 (4.50 pm)

10 (The Inquiry adjourned until 10.15 am the following day)

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1 I N D E X

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P121 (continued) ................................. 2
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Questions by MR PHILLIPS (continued) ......... 2
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Application by MR DONALDSON ...................... 73
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Submissions by MR DONALDSON .................. 73
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Submissions by MR PHILLIPS ................... 86
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Ruling ....................................... 90
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MISS ANNE COLVILLE (sworn) ....................... 91
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Questions by MR PHILLIPS ..................... 91
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