JIM NEESON - STILL ON THE CASE
|In 1994, while a Member of the Australian Federal Parliament
I visited Belfast and met Jim. Here he traces the route taken
by loyalist gunman Michael Stone when he shot dead mourners
including Jim's brother, Kevin.
During one of his trips to Australia Jim told the following story
- this is an edited version - the full text can be found at: http://www.anarki.net/angry/ap7/casement.html
Three IRA volunteers were killed by the British SAS in Gibraltar.
When they were brought home to Belfast the British tried to hijack
the bodies. That night another IRA man was killed in Belfast and
another person was killed by a loyalist. When we buried the Gibraltar
three, Michael Stone attacked the funeral with guns and hand grenades
killing three people and injuring over 70. One of those killed was
my brother Kevin.
I'm the manager of a community taxi service in West Belfast. We've
had 7 of our drivers killed by loyalists over the last 10 or 11
years as well as 20 or 30 attacks by loyalists on our taxis and
our passengers. Kevin was an IRA man . We didn't know, it's a secret
organisation. He was also a taxi man.
.......................Over 200 people were arrested and 41 charged;
I was one of those charged.........Yes, It was all on the video
evidence. No-one was arrested till a month afterwards. On the night
the incident the RUC, went to the media and took all their tapes
off them. They were never allowed to get it to make up a video before
last year. They used subjudice laws; anything we could show could
affect the fairness of the Diplock Courts. That's a laugh in itself,
but it prevented some of us mounting a better defence.
With Gerry Adams at the Sinn Fein Office on the Falls Road.
I took the photo.
Were people arrested because of their political affiliations?
A fair number of people were picked because they were there. Over
1600 police looked at those tapes. In some cases some of those police
identified 10 or 11 or 12 people, These policemen patrol our district
on a day to day basis. They become familiar with people and given
photographs it's pretty easy for them to identify someone. And that's
how the identification process took place, but they had to throw
in a few who weren't activists; otherwise it would look too much
like a set-up.
|A loyalist march we came across during our trip across Belfast.
'Be careful with that camera. Someone might think it's a gun,'
Jim had said when I jumped from the car to take this photo.