Northern Ireland news

'Investigations ongoing' in Diane Dodds offensive tweet case

Diane and Nigel Dodds with their son Andrew, who died in 1998
Marie Louise McConville

THE PSNI has said "investigations remain ongoing" into an offensive tweet sent to a DUP MLA.

Earlier this week it was revealed that detectives involved in the investigation had contacted the gardaí for assistance.

It is believed the person responsible for the abuse, which was directed at Diane Dodds, about her late son, is based in the Republic.

The tweet, posted on New Years’ Eve from an anonymous account, which has since been removed, made a hurtful reference to the death of the former economy minister’s son, Andrew.

Born with spina bifida, Andrew died in 1998 after contracting pneumonia just before his ninth birthday.

The Upper Bann representative described her late son as a "fun-loving" young boy, who had an opinion on everything.

Mrs Dodds has pledged to pursue the troll, and it is understood she is being joined by the relative of a Troubles’ victim targeted by the same account.

She also criticised social media companies for failing to clamp down on offensive comments and said trolls were able to "hide behind a cloak of anonymity".

According to a report on RTÉ, the PSNI cyber crime unit identified the account holder and established that they live in the Republic.

It said PSNI contacted gardaí to request assistance.

Yesterday, the Gardai press office directed a query about the case to the PSNI.

On asking the PSNI if anyone had been interviewed in the case, a spokeswoman said: "Investigations remain ongoing and we are unable to offer any further comment at this time".

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