Man held in McCartney probe freed

A 29-year-old man arrested over the murder of Belfast man Robert McCartney has been released without charge.

Mr McCartney, a 33-year-old father-of-two, died after being stabbed near Belfast city centre on 30 January.

Another man questioned about the murder was released without charge at the weekend.

Meanwhile, the police have said they are no longer looking for people outside Northern Ireland in connection with the killing.

Earlier, Chief Constable Hugh Orde said a number of people wanted for questioning had left the jurisdiction.

Mr Orde said he is "not impressed" by the IRA's decision to expel three members suspected of involvement in the murder.

"I'm not that impressed by illegal organisations ejecting people who have committed illegal acts.


"This was not committed just by three people. We are looking to gather evidence against anyone that was involved in the actual offence, or in a conspiracy to commit the offence or in the affray around the offence," he added.

Mr Orde was speaking at a news conference a short time after Northern Ireland Secretary Paul Murphy also said the expulsions did not go far enough.

Mr Murphy said Sinn Fein should follow Mr McCartney's family's example and ask witnesses to go to the police.

He also paid tribute to the family and said he was impressed by the number of people who had shown support for them.

"It (the IRA) doesn't go far enough," he said.

"I hope they follow the lead of the McCartney family by telling people, if they know anything about this crime, they should go to the police.

"That should be the plea of every political party here in Northern Ireland, including Sinn Fein."

Mr McCartney's family has said expulsion of IRA members did not go far enough.

Speaking in the Irish Parliament on Tuesday night, Irish Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern said that until Mr McCartney's killers "are brought before the courts, no member of the Provisional movement can utter the words truth or justice with any credibility".


Meanwhile, a motion demanding justice for the McCartney family has been passed by 33 to 0 at Belfast City Council.

SDLP councillor Pat McCarthy said the motion condemned the killing and commended the family's courage.

Mr McCartney's family has said those responsible must be forced to admit their role in the murder.

The motion, debated on Tuesday night, called upon the entire community to show "the same courage and dignity displayed by Mr McCartney's family".

Mr McCarthy represents the Markets area where the murder took place.

His motion also demanded "an end to the intimidation of witnesses and calls upon the community to co-operate with the due process of the law to apprehend the organisers and perpetrators of this crime".

Thirteen Sinn Fein members on Belfast City Council abstained from the motion.

Meanwhile, Sinn Fein is not going to raise funds during Gerry Adams's trip to the United States for St Patrick's Day.

Party sources said events billed as fundraisers would now become speaking engagements as fundraising could become a distraction from the work of rebuilding the political process.

It is also understood Sinn Fein chief negotiator Martin McGuinness will not travel to the United States, but will stay at home because of the gravity of the current situation.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?