Rosemary Nelson

Inquiry into murder of Northern Irish solicitor finds no collusion between paramilitaries and crown forces


Rosemary Nelson

An inquiry into the murder of lawyer Rosemary Nelson in 1999 was published yesterday and found no evidence of direct collusion between security forces and loyalist paramilitaries.

However the finding was immediately dismissed by members of Sinn Fein and the SDLP, who spoke of the years of harassment and abuse Nelson suffered from the local police.

A bomb was secretly planted under Nelson's car by members of the Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF) a splinter group of the Ulster Defense Association (UDA).

What both paramilitary organizations had in common, critics say, was that a large number of their members or associates were working for one or other branches of the security forces at the time.

The inquiry noted that local police officers operating in the Mid Ulster area had continually threatened the solicitor over her championing of nationalist residents in Portadown.

Two years before Nelson was murdered, an identical explosive device was used to kill the UDA man Glenn Greer in 1997. Greer had previously confessed to his C Company paramilitary members that he had been a Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) Special Branch informer.

The inquiry found that the same kind of booby-trap bomb that had been planted to kill Greer was used in Nelson's death.

One of the biggest questions that the Nelson Inquiry had to ask was how and why the RUC Special Branch, the security services and military intelligence knew nothing of the murder plot, when it was plain they had so many informers working for them, some of whom must have had some knowledge of the plans to kill the lawyer.

Secretary of State Owen Paterson told the House of Commons on Monday that there were failings in the measures that had been taken to protect the lawyer. Paterson said that the British government was "profoundly sorry" for these failures.


Log in with your social accounts:

Or, log in with your IrishCentral account:

Forgot your password ?

Don't have an account yet? Register now !

Join IrishCentral with your social accounts:

Already have an account ?

For Newsletter Subscribers – Draw for 1 Prize on December 31st.

Prize: Your Piece of Ireland – a Square of Land in the heart of the Glens of Antrim, Ireland

More details here (or you can buy a little piece of Ireland directly): http://bit.ly/1zew9ox

Terms & Conditions

Or, sign up for an IrishCentral account below:

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.

Make sure we gathered the correct information from you

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.

You already have an account on IrishCentral! Please confirm you're the owner.

Our new policy requires our users to save a first and last name. Please update your account: