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State role in Finucane murder

British government agents played "key roles" in the 1989 murder of Belfast lawyer Pat Finucane, a report has found. There had been long-running allegations of state collusion in his death.

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'Shocking' levels of state collusion, but 'no conspiracy'

The de Silva review into the murder of solicitor Pat Finucane has concluded there was "no overarching state conspiracy" but "shocking" levels of state collusion.

De Silva found the following agencies of the state were involved in the murder, and subsequent cover-up of the murder:


  • Members of the RUC "proposed" Mr Finucane be selected as a murder target
  • They took "no action whatsoever" to prevent the planned attack
  • The was a failure to investigate and arrest key members of the West Belfast UDA after the attack
  • Members "seriously obstructed" the criminal investigation

The Army

  • The Army had information on a series of planned UDA attacks through their informer Brian Nelson, but did nothing with the information
  • The army "must take responsibility" for Nelson's "targeting activity", including Mr Finucane during 1987-1989
  • Senior officers lied to criminal investigators
  • The Army and MoD officials provided the defence minister with "highly misleading" and in parts "factually inaccurate" information about the handling of informer Brain Nelson

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