Northern Ireland news

Convicted paedophile Liam Adams dies

 Liam Adams was five years into his sentence for raping his daughter
Digitial Staff

CONVICTED child abuser Liam Adams has died.

The 63-year-old brother of former Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams had been receiving end-of-life care in a Belfast hospice for terminal cancer.

Earlier this month it was reported that Adams had been moved to hospital from Maghaberrry Prison, where he had been serving a 16-year sentence for the rape and sexual assault of his daughter, Aine Dahlstrom. He was five years into his prison term.

Mrs Dahlstrom, who waived her right to anonymity, was four in March 1977 when her father first assaulted her. The abuse escalated to rape in May 1978. The abuse continued until March 1983, only stopping when she was aged around nine.

She returned to Belfast from Scotland in 2006 to have the case against her father reopened. He was interviewed by police in November 2007. She went public in December 2009. There were further legal wrangles, leading to Adams fleeing to the Republic, where for a time he fought a European Arrest Warrant.

He was handed over to the PSNI in November 2011, having failed to challenge the extradition process. He continued to deny any wrongdoing, putting his victim through two lengthy trials. The first in April 2013 collapsed for legal reasons. The second started in September of that year.

A jury convicted him and in November 2013 Judge Corinne Philpott sentenced the west Belfast man to 16 years in prison, with two further years to be served on probation. In 2015 an appeal against the conviction failed.

Adams has served most of his sentence in segregation, over fears for his safety because of the high-profile nature of his conviction.

Liam Adams was the younger brother of former Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams

His second wife and daughter supported him throughout the criminal process.

The Northern Ireland Prison Service confirmedthis morning the death in custody of a 63-year-old prisoner from Maghaberry Prison.

"The prisoner died on Monday morning, February 25. His next of kin have been informed. As with standard procedure, the PSNI and Prisoner Ombudsman have been informed," a statement said.

Ronnie Armour, Head of the Northern Ireland Prison Service said: "I would like to extend my sympathy to the family of the prisoner. My thoughts are with them at this difficult time."

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