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Stakeknife inquiry ends without any prosecutions of final 12 suspects

Stakeknife inquiry ends without any prosecutions of final 12 suspects

Stakeknife inquiry ends without any prosecutions of final 12 suspects
Feb 29, 2024 1 min, 0 secs

A seven-year police investigation into murders linked to the British army’s top agent inside the Provisional IRA has ended with no prosecutions.

The announcement signalled an anti-climactic and widely expected winding down of the saga known as Stakeknife, one of the most contentious cases of the Northern Ireland Troubles.

“The challenges encountered in this last phase of decisions, as before, included an absence of important source materials and legal difficulties in attempting to rely upon intelligence records as evidence that could be admitted in criminal proceedings,” said the deputy director of public prosecutions, Michael Agnew.

The west Belfast man, who died last year aged 77, is said to have passed secrets to army handlers who allegedly turned a blind eye while he presided over the killing of suspected IRA informers.

Jon Boutcher, a former Bedfordshire police chief constable, launched Operation Kenova with a 50-strong team of detectives in 2016 to deliver justice and truth to families of the victims.

“I hope that these reports will demonstrate the wider value of Operation Kenova investigations in providing answers to families and also setting out a fuller context and narrative on what are no doubt very challenging and significant issues of understandable public interest,” said Herron.

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