A report by Marie Anderson published this morning examined attacks by the UDA/UFF between 1989 and 1993 which resulted in 19 murders and multiple attempted murders.
The report identified a number of significant concerns and the Ombudsman said she was of the view that the families’ concerns about collusive behaviours were ‘legitimate and justified’.
Among the findings were that Mr. Fullerton was not warned about a threat to his life.
Reacting to the report Deputy Chief Constable Mark Hamilton said: “The Police Ombudsman’s Report into this series of murders and attempted murders brings to the fore once again the horror and pain for all communities of Northern Ireland’s past.
“This report by the Police Ombudsman examined the police response into 19 murders and two attempted murders carried out by the ‘Derry/North Antrim Brigade of the UDA/UFF during the period 1989-1993. This series of atrocities culminated in the indiscriminate attack on the Rising Sun Bar in Greysteel on 30 October 1993.
“These were appalling crimes carried out by those with evil intent. We are very aware of the hurt and anger felt by the families of those killed and those injured and we apologise to the families for the findings in this report."
DCC Hamilton said the policing landscape has completed changed since the early 1990s.
“The peace process has changed the context for policing. The Police Service of Northern Ireland now have greatly improved policies and procedures which guide our response to potential threats and how we approach criminal investigations and the management of intelligence. These policies and procedures are firmly embedded in principles of the Human Rights Acts 1998. We welcome the fact that the Ombudsman has recognised these positive developments in her report.
“The Police Service of Northern Ireland remains firmly committed to bringing those responsible for these murders to justice. We appeal to the community for information that will assist our Legacy Investigation Branch detectives in their investigations."