Northern Ireland news

Man accused of involvement in David Black murder named during recorded Garda interviews of another suspect

Co Tyrone man Damien McLaughlin

A PRE-trial hearing in the case of a Co Tyrone man accused of involvement in the murder of prison officer David Black, heard him being named during recorded Garda interviews of another suspect.

The recordings, being played to Belfast Crown Court, of two officers interviewing suspect Stephen Brady may form evidence in the trial of 41-year-old Damien McLaughlin from Kilmascally Road near Ardboe.

He denies charges including, aiding and abetting the November 2012 murder of the 52-year-old Mr Black, a father of two, possessing the Toyota Camry used by the gunmen, and belonging to the IRA.

Mr Justice Colton, is being asked to consider whether the 12 Co Leitrim video recordings, if any, of the Garda interviews with Brady can form part of the Crown case against McLaughlin.

Several interviews have already been played to Mr Justice Colton.

Today, in the seventh interview played to the court, the Leitrim man was shown CCTV footage of the garage where he worked and talking to a man, who also allegedly used his mobile phone.

Brady was then pressed by the officers that the man he was seen chatting to was McLaughlin.

While he initially agreed with the officers "the fellow was in the Real IRA", believed him to be a member, that he "knew him by name", although not personally, he refused to name the man.

"That's f***ing Damien McLaughlin, is that f***ing correct," asked one detective, and when Mr Brady refused to say, the officer came back at him: "Its either a yes or no, answer, that's Damien McLaughlin from Tyrone".

Mr Brady repeatedly told his inquisitors, "I told you I'm not saying .... you're saying its him".

In response the detectives, repeatedly swearing, told him "that's Damien McLaughlin from Tyrone... I know that Damien McLaughlin from Tyrone".

As the suspect repeated he was "not saying" the detective repeated, "You're not telling me who it is ... I'm telling you".

Eventually after it was put to him time and again that the man he was seen on the CCTV footage with, was Damien McLaughlin, Brady replied: "Yeah".

He also later agreed with the officers that he knew "Damien McLaughlin to be an IRA member from Tyrone".

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