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Northern Bank robbery - what progress?

01 March 2007

Jim Allister MEP has been in correspondence with Michael McDowell in respect of the ongoing investigation into the Northern Bank Robbery and resulting money-laundering.

In a written reply, 3 months after the MEP wrote to Dublin's Justice Minister, Mr McDowell has stated:-
"You will be aware that the Garda Siochana has previously confirmed the link between the money laundering operation uncovered in 2005 and the proceeds of the Northern Bank robbery. I can inform you that the material has been sent by the Gardai to the Director of Public Prosecutions in connection with this case. Various lines of inquiry continue to be investigated on which it would not be appropriate to comment in detail......illegally obtained funds are being pursued vigorously by the law enforcement agencies in both jurisdictions, and this will continue to be the case. I would include the ongoing investigation into the proceeds of the Northern Bank robbery in this category."
Commenting Mr Alister said:-
"At the time of the Northern Bank robbery Mr McDowell said the Provisional movement was "a colossal crime machine laundering huge sums of money." In view of this, I trust the promised vigour by the law enforcement agencies in investigating both the robbery and the destiny of its ill-gotten gains, isn't being tempered by political considerations, North or South. The longer that passes without significant developments, the more suspicion that such might indeed be happening."

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NI politics