I see the RUC/PSNI has once again exposed itself for what it has always been and will always be, an unaccountable, Political, Unionist Force with no interest in the rule of law or justice in general. I am of course referring to the ridiculous political expeditation that the RUC/PSNI has engaged with regards to the robbery of the Northern Bank and this recent crop of ridiculous arrests.
I hear that one of the men arrested is bringing an action to the Police Ombudsman. Brian Arthurs, a former POW, said “This has been terrible ordeal for my family. I deny any involvement in the Northern Bank raid.
“Over the last six months, my name has begun appearing in various newspapers, claiming I am a senior IRA man, even a member of the army council and the link man with General de Chastelain on decommissioning. All nonsense.
“I regard this as a process of police victimisation through the media.”
He added: “On the morning of my arrest, (yesterday) the police arrived at 7 (am) and within two hours reporters were outside the door. I believe they were tipped off by the police.
“The beat on the door, they terrified my children (aged 8, 14 and 17) and handcuffed me in front of my family.
“The police stayed in the house for five hours. They took away 39 bags of our property, every scrap of paper in the house, every phone, every bank statement and document relating to my two businesses.
“They even took my daughter’s GCSE coursework.
“They were very aggressive, they threatened my son Declan, aged eight, telling him at one stage to “Get back inside the f.....g house” or they would kill him ‘like we killed your uncle’.
“Seven jeeps arrived at my parents house, they are aged 65 and 70 – and were there for four hours. My children are now not sleeping at night.
“I am taking a case to the Police Ombudsman.
“When I was being interrogated, they asked me briefly about the Northern Bank robbery, accusing me of being involved in preparing the job and of being a leading IRA man.
“They then began to ask me about the IRA’s structures, how many members it has and how they feel about the ceasefire, it was a fishing expedition.
“When my lawyer asked what evidence they had to justify holding me, the police could only say unspecified intelligence information. They had nothing at all.”
From what I can see this is nothing more than a fishing expeditation and I fully expect nothing to come of it. The SDLP should take note of the mood in the Nationalist and Republican community, you jumped too soon and Nationalism can see that.