Saoradh claim Derry anti-terror police operation targeted 'decades old one pound lotto' for republican prisoners

The PSNI at Junior McDaid House on Thursday.
The PSNI at Junior McDaid House on Thursday.

Saoradh has claimed the police investigation into the alleged illegal use of a lottery in which its national headquarters were searched on Thursday was an operation against "a one pound lotto that is decades old in support of Republican Prisoners and their dependents".

The party said its Junior McDaid offices were the centre of the PSNI operation while the homes of a number of activists were also searched.

PSNI vehicles in Chamberlain Street on Thursday.

PSNI vehicles in Chamberlain Street on Thursday.

Saoradh spokesman Paddy Gallagher said: “Since the inception of Saoradh a little over three years ago, the wider Republican family have come together in a united fashion with a rejuvenated and revitalised outlook for the future of Ireland, this has clearly worried the British establishment as they have stepped up their campaign of harassment."

He claimed the move against the lottery was an attempt to "thwart community activism and the support network for current Republican Prisoners and their dependents".

Gallagher continued: “It is clear that our party headquarters, our party members and our support base are being actively targeted in a futile attempt to stop the public availing of the services we offer.”

Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Griffin said: “This morning [Thursday] we searched five properties in the city in connection with an ongoing investigation into the illegal use of a lottery in the Derry/Londonderry area and seized a sum of money and other items in connection with lottery activity."