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Northern Ireland news

Judge orders PSNI not to transfer cash into account of republican

A court has put in place an interim order preventing the PSNI transferring cash to the bank account of a man it allegedly tried to recruit as an informer
Connla Young

A court has ordered the PSNI not to pay money directly into the bank account of a man it allegedly tried to recruit as an informer.

It is believed to be the first time a court has issued such an order.

A judge, sitting at Belfast's High Court, also ruled that the man - who is a republican - cannot be identified.

His legal team launched a challenge after he allegedly received a call on his mobile phone from a person claiming to be a police officer earlier this month.

It was said that during the call the officer, who identified himself, asked the man about several individuals and told him that cash was going to be lodged in his account several days later.

The man launched legal action in a bid to stop cash being transferred.

It is believed the police involved were attached to the PSNI's C3 unit, which used to be known as Special Branch.

The man's solicitor, Michael Brentnall, said: “Our office initiated emergency judicial review proceedings after PSNI officers stated they would transfer money into our client's account, even though our client had objected to the transfer of money, and after he had refused to provide information to them in respect of certain individuals.

“The High Court has put in place an interim order to stop the PSNI from transferring monies to our client's bank account.

“This was done in order to protect our client's human rights which have undoubtedly been put at risk by the threat of the transfer of monies.”

It is not the first time that security forces have been accused of putting cash into people's bank accounts.

Last November north Belfast woman Arlene Shannon claimed that MI5 lodged £300 in her bank without her permission.

Earlier this month Co Fermanagh woman Sharon Boyle also alleged that two detectives gave her Next and Asda gift cards valued at £150 each after she was approached at her home in Enniskillen.

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