On Friday (21/1/11) afternoon, my sister, niece and I were travelling along Belfast’s Antrim Road when I noticed a friend being questioned at the side of the road. He’s frequently harassed by the British Police; therefore I stopped my car and walked a short distance to find out if he was alright. I was informed that the unreformed RUC were seizing his vehicle because they claimed he had no insurance. The person in question is a legitimate Taxi driver and has been for a number of years. So it was plain to see that the Peelers were intent on preventing him from working that particular day.
Seconds later, two heavily-armed RUC/PSNI members surrounded me in a hostile manner and demanded to search me under ‘anti-terror legislation’. At that stage, my friend was speaking on his mobile phone to his insurance company. He assured me that he was fine, so I returned to my car where a third Peeler was questioning my sister. I climbed into the driver’s seat and was attempting to close the door when a handcuff was suddenly placed around my wrist and my arm was dragged. I was then ordered to leave the vehicle as I was under arrest for assault?
After I got out, my two wrists were cuffed before I began receiving a number of kicks to my legs and ordered to lie on the ground. I was also being choked and punched repeatedly at the time by a second RUC/PSNI member. When I fell, they dragged me to their armoured Land Rover, parked a short distance away. Before three Peelers threw me onto the floor of the Jeep, were one kept punching me in the chest. Leg restraints were also placed on me despite protesting that I suffered from a serious heart condition. My sister and niece were outside telling them the same thing. It was then I demanded for medical assistance because at that point, I was finding it difficult to breath.
Eventually Ambulance staff arrived and helped treat me, they asked that I be brought immediately. However, the RUC/PSNI refused their pleas and took me to Antrim Road Barracks in Belfast. After being fingerprinted and photographed, I was taken to an ‘interview room’, where two Special Branch men were awaiting. The Spooks ‘notified’ me that a Loyalist killer Gang had been actively tracking my movements for sometime.
The British Intelligence Agents further alleged that they would end the targeting, if I ‘helped’ jail three Belfast Republicans, who they named. They also claimed that I would receive a ‘substantial financial reward’ if I agreed to ‘cooperate’. If not, they would pass on his details to the gang. When they left I demanded from the desk Sergeant who they were and who allowed them to speak to me, but I was ignored. This disturbing development yet again exposes the nefarious tactics used by British Crown Forces to frame Irish Republicans for lengthy imprisonment and death.
Martin Og Meehan