Sunday Life

UVF must apologise
What victim's dad told Ervine in first meeting between two

By Stephen Breen
21 November 2004

THE dad of a UVF murder victim last night slammed the terror group for embarking on a 'consultation process' among its members.

Outraged Raymond McCord - whose son, Raymond jnr, was beaten to death seven years ago - said the organisation would do better to meet its victims.

Senior loyalist sources told Sunday Life the UVF is to step up meetings with its rank-and-file about the group's future plans.

The determined dad spoke to us after he confirmed he had held a secret meeting with PUP chief David Ervine, to discuss his son's brutal killing.

Mr McCord has consistently claimed the murder was carried out on the orders of a Special Branch informer within the UVF.

Police Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan is currently investigating the police inquiry into the murder, giving the Newtownabbey man hope that his family will finally receive justice.

Mr McCord had initially requested a meeting with the UVF's so-called 'chief of staff' - but his request was rejected.

In the seven years since the killing, no one from the UVF-linked PUP had met with Mr McCord, despite repeated requests.

Although he described the meeting with Mr Ervine as "positive", he hit out at the UVF leader's rebuff.

Said Mr McCord: "He would not see me, because he doesn't want to answer the questions I would have put to him.

"Just like the man who ordered my son's death, I think this leader has also been a high-level informer over the years, and he knows I would have no problem in confronting him about this.

"As I've said before, I don't want the people who murdered my son to be executed - I just think they should be expelled from the organisation.

"If the UVF does decide to go out of business, then they should apologise for the innocent people they have murdered since their 1994 ceasefire.

"My meeting with David Ervine was positive, and I've no doubt, one day, my family will get justice for the murder of my son."

In a separate development, the son of the UVF's 'chief of staff' was assaulted during a Remembrance Day Parade, in the Shankill last Sunday.

Senior sources told us the man was involved in a bloody fist-fight, after he was accused of being a "cokehead" by the son of another leading loyalist.

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