After the discovery of declassified statements and documents from the ministry of defence, it is apparent that a secret deal existed between the Army and the attorney general,where by the most senior soldier in Northern Ireland,Gen Frank King lobbied the AG.
This is just further evidence of collusion between different parts of the british establishment of the time.
Lieutenant General Frank King sought to prevent soldiers from being prosecuted by the courts, for a range of offences, some of which included murder.King said “Attorney General has now undertaken to invite my views on the public interest in aspects of the prosecution of a soldier arising out of an operational shooting incident before any final decision in the case is reached.”King also called for soldiers to be exempt from any civil law.
The documents reveal assurances given to army chiefs by then Attorney General, Sir Peter Rawlinson, that his officials were not “unsympathetic” to the plight of soldiers in Northern Ireland and would do all in their powers to avoid prosecutions.
So the attorney general at the time sought the views of General King before any decision was made as to the prosecution of a soldier.Given that,the chances of any british soldier facing trial for crimes committed were very slim indeed.
Yet it didn't stop the Army from paying out compensation to victims families that were murdered by soldiers.
Families are calling for cases that involved the lobbying and meetings between the army and the DPP to be reviewed,and reopened.
The documents, uncovered by researchers from the Pat Finucane Centre, reveal:
• The Attorney General was “always ready to receive representations” from army officers to prevent soldiers being charged with serious crimes.
• Less than 10% of all cases submitted to the DPP, regarding shootings or assault incidents involving soldiers, resulted in prosecutions.
• MoD officials were assured that the Attorney General and DPP were all ex-army and by “no means unsympathetic” to the plight of soldiers.
• By 1976 the British army had paid out the equivalent of £5.7m in today’s money in more than 400 out-of-court settlements to avoid soldiers being convicted of unlawful shootings and assaults on civilians.
• The army’s most senior soldier warned that any decision to convict soldiers would force the British army to review its entire operation in Northern Ireland.
Declassified documents reveal army lobbied Attorney General not to prosecute soldiers | TheDetail.tv