UVF On Verge Of Implosion?

picador

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Breaking story from UTV who are tonight reporting that a senior figure in the paramilitary Ulster Volunteer Force is about to turn supergrass against his former comrades. It's believed this is linked to the ongoing Operation Ballast investigation into the activities of the notorious Mount Vernon gang during the 1990s.

A number of men from North Belfast and Newtonabbey, among them the serial assassin and RUC Special Branch agent, Mark Haddock, face trial for serious terrorist offences, including the murder of rival loyalist Tommy English. The case against the accused rests heavily on the testimony of two brothers, Ian and Robert Stewart, who turned supergrass in return for lenient sentences after confessing their parts in the October 2000 murder of UDA man English (the GFA's early-release provisions apply only to offences commited before April 1998).

A new wave of arrests is expected in light of the latest, more serious defection, which comes at a time when the UVF is already under severe pressure due to the continuing fallout from its murder of Shankill Road man Bobby Moffat in June. The Sunday World, which has impeccable loyalist sources, reported at the weekend that the organisation's top brass (sorry that's me seeking a job at the SW!) was in total disarray with senior figures said to be turning on each other.

Can the state really afford to hang the UVF leadership out to dry? And on another note, why is the UTV website publicising police arrest operations in advance?

Adds: the Irish News initially named Gary Haggarty as a prospective 'grass' in August last year.
http://saoirse32.blogsome.com/2009/08/28/p14147/
 
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Conan UFB

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I hope the UVF/RHC slaughter each other.
You can never be to careful when a touts about boys.
When in doubt take him out.
 

vinoboy

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Doubtless the above advice will continue to be practiced on the illiterate youth that get sucked in by dissident groups.
 

picador

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I hope the UVF/RHC slaughter each other.
You can never be to careful when a touts about boys.
When in doubt take him out.
There are certainly a few who know a lot of secrets. Which is why I doubt that either the HET's Operation Ballast (apparently renamed Stafford) or the PSNI investgation into the murder of Bobby Moffat will touch the men right at the top.

National Security considerations are at issue.
 
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picador

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We must cut links with UVF, says PUP chief - Northern Ireland, Local & National - Belfasttelegraph.co.uk

The remnants of the Progressive Unionist Party meet tonight to decide whether to maintain their links with the UVF. I forecast the UVF needs all the help it can get at the minute and the PUP will vote to maintain that link.

A cynic over at Slugger suggests the answer to the question
Why is the UTV website publicising police arrest operations in advance?
is that a big stick is being waved at the UVF in a final attempt to make them play ball in accordance to the rules (i.e. no more killing, kneecapping or racketeering).

I guess we shall see whether these heavily-trailed arrests (also mentioned in today's Irish News) materialise or not.
 

picador

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PUP has voted to retain the link with UVF. Meanwhile, still no arrests.
 

picador

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Very interesting to hear; was it close?
I've no idea but as things stand the UVF still has a political adjunct. Some dodgy looking fellas appeared on the news as interim leader Dr John Kyle read out a statement.
 

vivabrigada

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BBC News - Former UVF leader Gary Haggarty granted bail by Belfast court
"In January 2010 he agreed to become an assisting offender under the terms of the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act (SOCPA).
He has been held in custody since agreeing to testify against former associates in return for a lighter sentence.
Some 30,000 pages of material and 760 interview tapes have been amassed from interviews conducted with him."

Will he be any more reliable a witness than the Stewart brothers or is it squeaky bum time on the Shankill?
 

vivabrigada

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I hope many ex RUC/current PSNI people are finding life very stressful.

Scumbags.
So do I, but I wouldn't hold my breath:

"Mark Thompson (Relatives for Justice) says he was deeply disturbed by the responses he got at a meeting with a senior officer from the PSNI’s C2 Serious Crime Unit. Operation Ballast became Operation Stafford when the PSNI took it over.
Mr Thompson says he accompanied a number of families to a meeting with Garry Eaton, the then PSNI’s Senior Investigating Officer [SIO] involved in the Operation Stafford investigation.

He told the Detail: “During the course of a 20-minute private meeting with the family who lost two relatives to this gang he told myself and the family he was not interesting in examining the role of police officers whatsoever.

“The conversation came around to us putting to him that if he came across a police officer that was committing a criminal act, engaged in wrong-doing or had information that could have prevented the loss of life and didn’t act or protected a person who was an agent involved in murder, what would he do with that?

“And he stopped us and said ‘I want to make it crystal clear I am not looking at police officers, I am only interested in terrorism and criminality.’”

The PSNI told The Detail that no one was above the law but pointed out that the police did not investigate police – that was the job of the Police Ombudsman."
http://www.thedetail.tv/issues/54/the-state-and-northern-ireland’s-past/the-state-and-northern-ireland’s-past
 

vivabrigada

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PUP leader Billy Hutchinson has denied claims that he 'debriefed' the killers of murdered schoolboy Thomas Devlin.

The allegation has been made to the police by Gary Haggarty, former UVF boss turned supergrass, it was reported yesterday.

It is claimed that Haggarty (41) has told police that former assembly member and UVF prisoner Hutchinson helped advise Thomas's killers, Gary Taylor and Nigel Brown, on what to tell the police.
Haggarty claims the debriefing took place in a property on the Mount Vernon estate that had been bugged by Special Branch.

In 2007 Mr Hutchinson was arrested, questioned and released without charge as part of the murder investigation.

The arrest was made after detectives planted a bug in Nigel Brown's home which recorded him talking to Gary Taylor about the PUP leader. At the time Mr Hutchinson blamed the arrest on the fact he had been critical of the police investigation in the media.
Hutchinson Rejects Claim That He 'Debriefed' Killers | News | The Irish News
 

eskrimador

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PUP leader Billy Hutchinson has denied claims that he 'debriefed' the killers of murdered schoolboy Thomas Devlin.

The allegation has been made to the police by Gary Haggarty, former UVF boss turned supergrass, it was reported yesterday.

It is claimed that Haggarty (41) has told police that former assembly member and UVF prisoner Hutchinson helped advise Thomas's killers, Gary Taylor and Nigel Brown, on what to tell the police.
Haggarty claims the debriefing took place in a property on the Mount Vernon estate that had been bugged by Special Branch.

In 2007 Mr Hutchinson was arrested, questioned and released without charge as part of the murder investigation.

The arrest was made after detectives planted a bug in Nigel Brown's home which recorded him talking to Gary Taylor about the PUP leader. At the time Mr Hutchinson blamed the arrest on the fact he had been critical of the police investigation in the media.
Hutchinson Rejects Claim That He 'Debriefed' Killers | News | The Irish News
That's when Dawn "I know nuffink about the UVF" Purvis organised a protest for Hutchinson's release.

But sure, Billy and Gerry Kelly were on the radio this week talking like BBFs
 


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