Published Date: 24.05.2002
The Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland notes with surprise and disappointment the contents of a Press Release issued by Edwards & Co, Solicitors, on behalf of the Police Association for Northern Ireland on 22nd May 2002.
The Police Ombudsman does not consider that it is proper to debate in the media the merits or otherwise of the judicial review challenge issued by the Police Association in respect of her report upon an inquiry into matters concerning The Omagh Bomb Investigation. Contrary to the provocative and inaccurate assertions in the said Press Release, the issue as to whether the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland acted illegally or unlawfully is yet to be determined by the Court and the Police Ombudsman has filed a detailed defence to the allegation made by the Police Association in its legal documents.
The Police Ombudsman simply does not understand the suggestion in the said Press Release that she has not substantially challenged the Police Association allegations or that she is seeking to divert attention to some alleged peripheral matter. It would be inappropriate to attempt to ascertain via the media what the Police Association mean or whether the Press Release is intended to be some form of response to recent news stories that Senior Police Officers have sworn affidavits in the Court proceedings. In any event it is the Police Ombudsman’s view that all relevant matters should be left for the Court to determine.
Police Ombudsman Information Office.
Telephone 028 90 828604.