Northern Ireland news

Police criticised over privacy request at UDA man Colin 'Bap' Lindsay's funeral

Paramilitary wreaths are carried at the funeral of UDA commander Colin 'Bap' Lindsay in south Belfast

POLICE have been criticised for issuing a request on behalf of a murdered UDA man’s family for privacy at his funeral - where UFF and UDA insignia were later produced.

Senior UDA members mingled with mourners at the funeral of Colin ‘Bap’ Lindsay, pictured left, in south Belfast yesterday.

The UDA man died after a samurai sword attack at a house in the city’s Belvoir estate earlier this month. Stanley Wightman (52), who was also wounded, died in hospital two days later.

Albert Armstrong (46), of Mahee Close on the Belvoir estate, has been charged with murdering both men.

UDA commander Jackie McDonald, dressed in a dark suit and wearing a UDA tie, saluted as Lindsay’s remains were carried into Belvoir Church of Ireland for the funeral service. Police sat in cars near the church as two men carried large floral wreaths from the UDA and the UFF behind Lindsay’s coffin.

Men dressed in white shirts and black ties and wearing loyalist armbands formed a guard of honour for the cortege which was led by a lone piper. A man wearing a beret saluted the coffin as it passed.

Last night Policing Board member Dolores Kelly said police need to clarify their position.

“I think it’s up to them to explain why they made the decision they did and what consideration they gave to it,” she said.

“It may have been out of respect for the family but there are others to do that.”

The DUP has asked police to ensure a “proper evidence gathering” operation is in place at today’s funeral of INLA hunger striker Patsy O’Hara’s mother Peggy. The call was made by former social development minister Nelson McCausland after a masked gunman fired a volley of shots over Mrs O’Hara’s coffin as part of a republican tribute to the Derry woman.

Mr McCausland said he contacted Chief Constable George Hamilton to demand that evidence gathering would take place at the pensioner’s funeral and asked 20 questions about how republican funerals were policed. 

Northern Ireland news

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