Rights Watch (UK), formerly British Irish Rights Watch, are pleased that the Police Ombudsman has vindicated the Sergeant Joe Campbell’s family’s long held concern that the RUC did not do enough to protect Sergeant Campbell’s life, or investigate his death. However, the investigation was significantly hampered by the police’s failure to produce relevant information and the failure of former police officer’s to cooperate with the investigation.
Yasmine Ahmed, Director of Rights Watch (UK) has said:
“The Ombudsman’s report is welcome, although we join with the family at expressing our dismay that no individual has been held to account for his death and that there have been a number of investigative failings. The length of time taken to produce the report (12 years), the loss and deliberate destruction of information and the failure of some former RUC officers to cooperate with the investigation have significantly hampered the investigation, including whether there was RUC collusion that was subsequently covered up. We are disappointed that so much of the early investigations initiated by the Police Ombudsman were not been built upon. This raises very serious questions about whether the UK Government has fulfilled its investigative obligations under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights in respect of Sergeant Campbell’s case.
We are glad that the report vindicates the families concerns that the RUC did not do enough to protect Sergeant Campbell’s life, or investigate his death and that our report aided the Ombudsman so greatly in his investigation. This report adds to the strong case for more to be done to ensure that there is greater accountability for RUC actions during the conflict in Northern Ireland, and that the PSNI should be more forthcoming with any information it holds that would aid investigations by the Police Ombudsman. We echo the conclusion of the Police Ombudsman when he says that ‘the family have been failed.”
For more information on this release contact Yasmine Ahmed (Director) on (+44) 0208 004 0941 or email firstname.lastname@example.org