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March 05, 2007

Collusion Families Visit Washington

Unity in Action Committee


Families Affected by Collusion to Visit Washington

Tuesday March 13th 1000am US Capitol Room H-137 -Briefing (Enter
Capitol Building on South/House side)

As a follow-up to Ms. Nuala O'Loan the Police Ombudsman for
Northern Ireland historic report on collusion concerned Irish
Americans have rallied together to sponsor a St Patrick's week
cross-community trip of victims of the British policy of
collusion with illegal paramilitary organizations.

In the first visit of its kind a delegation of families from both
the Catholic and Protestant community will be visiting the US to
highlight the importance of addressing the pressing issue of
British State collusion in the killings of people from both the
nationalist and unionist communities.

The delegation (details below) will be in Washington DC. Tuesday
March 13th to Friday March 16th; New York City Friday evening March
16th and Saturday March 17th; Philadelphia Sunday March 18th.

For further information or to arrange interviews please contact
Sean Pender or Dr. Michael Glass

The delegation will include the following members:

Mark Thompson

Mr. Thompson is the Director of Relatives for Justice (RFJ) a
regional NGO providing support and services to victims and
survivors of the conflict in Ireland. The British Army killed Mr.
Thompson's brother Peter in a shoot-to-kill operation on 13
January 1990.

Clara Reilly

Mrs. Reilly is the Chairperson of Relatives for Justice. Mrs.
Reilly has supported families injured and bereaved by the
conflict since it began. Mrs. Reilly's brother Jim Burns was
killed by the UVF on 23 February 1981 by the UVF in a clear case
of collusion. Her other brother Harry Burns died as a result of
injuries he received in a bomb explosion in 1999.

Raymond McCord

Mr. McCord is a protestant from North Belfast. Members of the UVF
beat Mr. McCord's son, Raymond jnr, to death in November 1997.
Mark Haddock, a notorious UVF killer and RUC and PSNI Special
Branch Agent responsible for up to 23 murders, sanctioned his
killing. In January of this year the Police Ombudsman published a
report into the circumstances surrounding the death of Raymond
McCord jnr. This has caused a seismic shift in public and
political opinion as it exposes the systemic and operational
policy of collusion.

Paul McIlwaine

Mr. McIlwaine's teenage son David was killed by the UVF in a
brutal stabbing incident on 19th February 2000 with another
teenager, Andrew Robb. This Protestant family from Portadown has
consistently highlighted the failings of the police investigation
into the killings of David and Andrew. After lengthy legal
battles the family, with the assistance of RFJ, have discovered
the concealment of important forensic evidence by the
investigating officers protecting the killers - including the
most senior UVF commander in the area who is a Special Branch
agent. This, and RUC Special Branch's failure to prevent the
killings despite being in receipt of prior intelligence of a
planned UVF plot to kill two people that night, is currently the
subject of a Police Ombudsman Inquiry.

Pauline Davey-Kennedy

Mrs. Kennedy's father John Davey, a Sinn Fein councilor on
Magherafelt District Council, was killed by the UVF on 14
February 1989. He was killed returning home from a Council
meeting. Mr. Davey had been the subject of consistent harassment
including detention, arrest and death threats from the British
army, and RUC Special Branch that they would have loyalists
active in the South Derry area kill him. The family has long
alleged collusion in this killing. His killing is the subject of
a report into collusion in the South Derry and East Tyrone area
by RFJ, assisted by the Centre for Human Rights at NUI Galway.

Theresa Slane

Mrs. Slane's husband Gerard was killed by the UDA on 23 September
1988 in the Clonard area of West Belfast. During the trial of
British army agent Brian Nelson it became clear that Mr. Slane's
murder had been entirely pre-planned and directed by the British
Army's secretive Force Research Unit (FRU).


Unity in Action Committee
13 Scullin Drive
Yardville, NJ 08620

Contacts: Sean Pender 609 462 7056

Dr. Michael Glass 609 540 3271
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