Prince Charles’ secret NI letters written at time of Thompson and McCartney murders
JUDGES have ordered the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) to disclose correspondence between Prince Charles and former Secretary of State Paul Murphy during a troubled seven month period that witnessed the murder of 22-year-old Darren Thompson in Londonderry as well as the Northern Bank Robbery and the outing of Denis Donaldson as a spy.
The ruling follows an appeal by English reporter Rob Evans who has applied for access to the ‘advocacy’ letters written by the heir to the throne between September 2004 and April 2005.
The contents of the confidential letters have remained secret up until now but will have been informed by a turbulent period when devolution was suspended.
Amongst the tragic events to have occurred during the period in question were the murders of Darren Thompson in Woodburn Park, Londonderry in September 2004 and of 33-year-old Robert McCartney outside a bar in May Street, Belfast, in January 2005.
The letters will reveal what Prince Charles felt about NIO policy at a time when the Northern Bank Robbery was being committed and when Sinn Féin member Denis Donaldson was exposed as an informer, who had been working for MI5 and Special Branch for years.
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