Top cop ‘naïve’: security sources

By Irish Echo Staff

[caption id="attachment_79815" align="aligncenter" width="300"]

Out of his depth? PSNI Detective Supt. Kevin Geddes

Out of his depth? PSNI Detective Supt. Kevin Geddes

Out of his depth? PSNI Detective Supt. Kevin Geddes[/caption]

A PSNI detective who has been branded “naive” and “out of his depth” after he made contradictory claims about IRA involvement in the Belfast murder of Kevin McGuigan is being blamed for crashing the peace process in Northern Ireland.

Detective Supt. Kevin Geddes told reporters Thursday that “former members of the Provisional IRA” were involved in the gunning to death of McGuigan who had been linked to the murder of ex-IRA leader Gerard “Jock” Davison in May.

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But in the same press conference, the mid-level cop said “a major line of inquiry for this investigation is that members of the Provisional IRA were involved in this murder.”

Cue outrage from unionist politicians and demands for Sinn Féin to be kicked out of the already floundering Stormont Executive.

This despite repeated calls by Sinn Féin for the public to help the PSNI bring to justice those behind both recent murders and public condemnation by Martin McGuinness of the gang posing as Action Against Drugs, which is believed to have targeted former IRA member McGuigan.

But this morning security sources in Belfast were briefing that Detective Supt. Geddes, a Scot, was “out of his depth” and “naïve.” “There’s no one who believes that the IRA is still a functioning armed group overseeing attacks or ordering killings,” said one source. “Geddes went off the reservation when he made that claim. However, when he said former IRA members were involved with Action Against Drugs, alongside dissident republicans and established criminals, he was on the money.”

As unionists lined up to lambast Sinn Féin and demand their removal from the Northern Ireland Executive, Sinn Féin’s Gerry Kelly was unequivocal in rejecting any republican link to the murder of McGuigan. Describing the PSNI comments as “contradictory,” Kelly said, “The IRA has gone, it has left the stage, it made a statement in July 2005, saying it was gone. In his statement Detective Supt. Geddes said that AAD, Action Against Drugs, was the organization he believed was involved. I am a republican. I am saying this is a criminal gang. I think I may have the credibility to be able to know the difference.”