RUC man at the centre of Pearse Jordan shooting leaves the North

The Andersonstown News has learned that the RUC member – known as Sergeant A – who was responsible for the shooting dead of local man Pearse Jordan in 1992, is no longer resident in the North.

And the fact that Sergeant A no longer lives within the jurisdiction creates a real possibility that he will never have to testify at any kind of legal proceedings related to Mr Jordan’s killing.

Pearse Jordan was shot dead in a controversial shoot-to-kill operation on this day (November 25) 12 years ago.

The 22-year-old was driving down the Falls Road when two vehicles carrying an elite RUC unit rammed his car near the entrance to St Louise’s school.
At that point, eyewitnesses reported that Pearse – who was unarmed – stumbled from his car in a daze before the RUC opened fire, shooting him three times in the back from close range.

Although the IRA later stated that Pearse was a Volunteer in the organisation, no incriminating evidence of any kind was recovered either at the scene of the shooting or in the car he was driving.

For the last 12 years Pearse’s parents, Hugh and Teresa, have continuously battled with their legal team at Madden and Finucane to secure justice in the case.

However, as with many shoot-to-kill cases, there has not been an inquest yet into Pearse Jordan’s killing.

Legal sources close to the Jordan family have indicated that the key reason behind the delays is a policy decision by the British government to constantly obstruct proceedings and challenge almost every direction issued by the courts in the case.

Speaking to the Andersonstown News yesterday, Hugh Jordan pledged to “carry on and get justice in whatever way we can”.

“We don’t have any other choice,” he said.

“The RUC/PSNI, the DPP, the courts and the British government generally have been consistently getting these cases strung out.

“Ironically the length of time since the incident could also be used by the Crown in their favour at any future hearings.

“Potentially, as well as witnesses not being available, they could use the delays they encounter in order to try and question the credibility of independent eyewitnesses.”

Arguing that the British government has taken a policy decision to obstruct even basic hearings into killings carried out in its name, such as the murder of solicitor Pat Finucane, Hugh called for justice in the cases.

“These cases all have similarities. It is British policy to string out the cases as long as possible in the hope that detail can be distorted or the search for truth diverted.

“The police have routinely withheld key evidence from coroner’s courts and then when they have been forced by the courts to hand it over they have given assurances they will comply, only to go back and constantly challenge such rulings in the courts.

“The reality is I would prefer that the European courts were able to impartially consider all these cases and issues, because there is no possibility of British justice in this type of case,” said Hugh.

Earlier this year there were two key decisions in the case regarding Judicial Review proceedings taken by solicitors for the Jordan family.

The Jordan family have welcomed the potential impact of some of the recommendations arising out of these proceedings, particularly the fact that following any inquest the Department of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) should re-examine its decision not to prosecute the RUC members involved in the killing, specifically Sergeant A.

Any inquest will also be allowed to examine the planning of the operation in which Pearse Jordan was killed, as well as reaching conclusion on the nature of the death.

However given that Sergeant A is apparently no longer resident in the North, there are very serious question marks as to whether he could even be compelled to attend an inquest, never mind face subsequent charges from the DPP.

Journalist:: Jarlath Kearney

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