Paratroopers legal team apply for judicial review

Marchers on January 30th, 1972, the day that would become known as Bloody Sunday.
Marchers on January 30th, 1972, the day that would become known as Bloody Sunday.

Legal counsel representing seven former members of the Parachute Regiment have applied for a judicial review of the manner in which the PSNI is conducting an investigation into the killings on Bloody Sunday.

A 66-year-old former Paratrooper arrested in connection with four shootings on January 30, 1972 was last night released on police bail. It is understood he is ‘Lance Corporal J’ and was being questioned in relation to the killing of William Nash, John Young, Michael McDaid as well as the wounding of Alexander Nash. He was released after twenty four hours in custody on police pending further inquiries.

Now solicitors acting for seven of the former soldiers have claimed the investigation into the deaths of 14 people as result of British Army actions in Derry almost 44 years ago is being conducted for “political reasons” and have also questioned the legality of the process.

It follows a warning from the PSNI that soldiers may lose their status of anonymity if they are charged with murder or other offences.

Yesterday, legal representatives for seven men, referred to by Lord Saville during the 12-year long inquiry into Bloody Sunday as soldiers B, N, O, Q, R, U and V served emergency proceedings against the PSNI in the High Court in London.

It is also believed that the lawyers acting for the soldiers have argued that it would be illegal to arrest any of the soldiers at their homes without notice and remove them to Northern Ireland for questioning. Therefore, they have requested that the soldiers are given 24 hours notice of arrest so that they can arrange to attend a local police station by appointment. They also contend that the murder investigation is politically motivated.