Police chief vows effort being made to tackle UDA

John Magill Superinrendent District Commander Causeway Coast and Glens District Command Unit.
John Magill Superinrendent District Commander Causeway Coast and Glens District Command Unit.

John Dallat has been given a reassurance by Superintendent John Magill that additional patrols are taking place daily to counter the threat from loyalist paramilitaries.

In the communication the District Commander for this area has disclosed that 18 arrests have taken place and 20 searches have been carried out. Two people have been reported to the Public Prosecution Service.

“While I welcome the assurance from Superintendent Magill I believe that his acceptance that the criminal activity including attacks on individuals is the work of the UDA is a matter which should concern not just the PSNI but the assembly at the highest level,” Mr Dallat, the SDLP MLA for East Derry, said in a statement.

“It is wrong that people should have to live side by side with terror groups that should never have existed and certainly have no excuse 18 years into the Assembly when there has been ample opportunity for them to put their so-called policies before the people.

‘This is why the Irish Government through the British-Irish Secretariat must step up its engagement with local people, particularly those in areas threatened by these vile organisations.”

Mr Dallat said efforts to stamp out paramilitarism in North Antrim and Coleraine must be a priority for the new government.

Regrettably there are still individuals within the UDA/UFF who were steeped to their neck in the Greysteel/Castlerock atrocities who never served a day in prison or were even questioned about those and other murders and are still in key positions to influence a resurgence of violence when the mood takes them,” he said.

“The new government, whoever it may be, has unfinished business in the North and must redouble its endeavours to create a normal society and not one built on make-believe while ignoring the reality that there are madmen still roaming the highways and byways with ever-increasing threats being made to plunge us into a past which served no-one and failed everyone.”