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Former IRA man admits to Bloody Friday lies.

Byline: EXCLUSIVE: By GREG HARKIN

A FORMER IRA man who claimed Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams orchestrated the murders of nine people in the Bloody Friday atrocity in July 1972 has admitted: "I made the whole thing up."

And former paratrooper Peter McMullen has signed an affadavit which shows how he was given preferential treatment and a shorter prison sentence for making the claims in the first place.

Yesterday saw the 30th anniversary of the 21 bombs which caused carnage and chaos across Belfast.

Earlier this week the Provos apologised for the deaths of the civilians in the bombings as well as what it described as all other non-combatants killed during the Troubles.

In his original claims McMullen, an army deserter who joined the IRA in the city, said he attended meetings before the outrage at which Gerry Adams was present.

McMullen said that at a final meeting the day before the attack on Belfast: "I remember Gerry saying that he was concerned about the routes to and from the bombing".

But McMullen, who is still in hiding in England, sent a sworn statement to a firm of Belfast solicitors admitting that he had agreed to make up his original claims in order to ingratiate himself with the UK authorities after giving up on an extradition battle in America.

McMullen, from Magherafelt, was freed from court in July 1996 despite being given 14 years for the bombing of a Yorkshire army barracks, after the authorities agreed to take into account his nine years spent fighting extradition from the US.

He also agreed to make a full public statement denouncing the IRA.

He was never prosecuted in relation to dozens of other offences he was allegedly involved in.

McMullen - or Pete the Para as he was known - was dismissed as a 'fantasist'. Among his most bizarre claims were:

he told the IRA the Army would shoot civil rights marchers just days before Bloody Sunday

he tipped off the Provos about the introduction of internment

the IRA sentenced him to death because he refused to take part in the kidnapping of a wealthy Irish-American bar owner.

Now McMullen has finally come clean on many of his claims and insisted that he made up many of them - including the Adams claims about Bloody Friday - were made up.
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Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Jul 21, 2002
Words:384
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