The widow of an IRA leader admits to a sleazy secret

Andy McSmith

The name Martin Meehan resonates in republican circles in Northern Ireland. He was among the Provisional IRA’s first recruits in 1970, and spent 18 of the next 24 years in jail. Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness were pall bearers at his funeral in 2007. But the name of his widow, Briege Meehan, will command less respect, even by Sinn Fein, now that she has pleaded guilty to assault and cruelty towards her step daughter. Charges of sexual abuse were “left on the books.” Her step daughter has released a statement saying that this should silence those who accused her of being a fantasist. This abuse was happening in the Meehan home, when Meehan himself was being feted as a political prisoner. The British army had pulled him in over the kidnapping and torturing a suspected informer, for which he was sentenced to 12 years.

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    After G8 there will be a new raft of political prisoners.

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