Sunday, June 20, 2010

Northumbria Police NOT telling the Truth in Martin McGartland Case

Letter by Martin McGartland;

Dear Sir,

Northumbria Police Press Release is fundamentally racist, politically
motivated and also misleading.

I have to respond to Northumbria Police's Press Release, which was
also reported in your newspaper on thursday 17th June 2010 regarding
my June 1999 attempted murder.
The Press Release Included the words "Our main line of inquiry,
therefore, continues to be that Mr McGartland may have been shot by a
person or people with Irish Republican sympathies for reasons closely
linked to his former life in Northern Ireland."

If Northumbria Police believe, as they have told me they believe, that my attempted murder was carried out by members or former members of the Provisional IRA who resented my work as a security force agent they should say so in plain terms. Their attempts to skirt round this fact are not only misleading, they convey a subtext which is fundamentally racist.

For a start not all the suspects who I know of are Irish. Secondly Irish republicanism is a respectable political ideology which should not be equated with terrorism or murder. Fianna Fail, the ruling party in the Irish republic, describes itself as “the republican party” and is the largest republican organisation on the island. Most people who
support a republican ideal have no truck terrorism and do not deserve to be pilloried in this way.

I am now formally calling on the Northumbria Police to amend the wording of their appeal and to make it clearer and fairer. It breaches their own code of conduct and if they refuse to amend it I will make a formal complaint and also take the matter further.

I also want to place on the record that I believe that Northumbria Police are involved in a cover-up when dealing with my 1999 attempted murder case. I also believe that Northumbria Police know who shot me and that they know where to find them but feel constrained from taking the appropriate action by political considerations.

Intended or not, this has the effect of protecting IRA terrorists who were involved in my shooting and reduces the effectiveness of their appeal.


Martin McGartland

Address withheld

Martin McGartland wrote the above letter in reply to the following Press Release by Northumbria Police;


Renewed appeal over shooting.

Dated: 17 Jun 2010
Northumbria Police

Police officers investigating the attempted murder of a man over a decade ago have renewed their appeal for information.

Martin McGartland was shot as he sat in his car in Duchess Street, Whitley Bay, 11 years ago today.

Despite being shot a number of times at close range, Mr McGartland survived the attack on June 17, 1999.

Although a number of arrests have been made, nobody has ever been charged with the attempted murder, and an extensive investigation is continuing.

Detective Chief Superintendent Chris Thomson, who is leading the investigation, said: "Although this was an unsuccessful attack, it was a cold-blooded, calculated murder attempt which caused Mr McGartland serious injuries.

"Our main line of enquiry continues to be that Mr McGartland may have been shot by a person or people with Irish Republican sympathies, for reasons closely linked to his former life in Northern Ireland.

"Mr McGartland's history as an agent for the then Royal Ulster Constabulary and his supplying of information about the Provisional IRA is a matter of public knowledge, documented in his own books on the subject."

Detectives are continuing to use DNA recovered from the scene to eliminate people from the investigation.

Other lines of enquiry centre around a van abandoned at the scene which had been bought only two days before the attack, and a message left on a telephone answering machine a few days earlier, asking about a van for sale. The caller had a Scottish accent, originating from somewhere in the Glasgow region.

Two semi-automatic pistols and some ammunition were found in the Gateshead area within months of the attack. One of the guns was forensically linked to the shooting and police believe those responsible may have stayed in the Gateshead area in the run up to the attack and possibly afterwards. This is another line of enquiry.

Det Chief Supt Thomson added: "Although nothing substantial came out of last year's appeal, which marked the 10th anniversary of the incident, we are determined to make sure that anyone who may have any information about this attack has the opportunity to come forward.

"Over time, word can leak out and be talked about. People's loyalties can change a lot in eleven years, and people may now be prepared to help us - it's a long time for people to keep silent about something like this.

"Anyone who may have information can contact Northumbria Police on 03456 043 043, ext 69191 or the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."

Police still have an audio tape message left on a telephone answering machine a few days before the shooting by a man who is believed to be one of those involved in the attack. The caller was asking about the sale of a van which was similar to that used to conceal the gunman immediately before the shooting. To hear this tape again, log on to