Overend shock at compensation

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A £75,000 compensation award paid out to a Coalisland man shot while acting as an IRA getaway driver is shocking, according to Ulster Unionist Sandra Overend.

Mrs Overend, MLA for Mid Ulster said she was disgusted at the award paid out to the man.

She said: “Like many of my constituents I am shocked and disgusted that anyone should be awarded compensation for injuries sustained whilst preparing to act as a getaway driver for a terrorist gang.  

“This gang set out to murder police officers and anyone else who was unfortunate enough to cross their path. Anyone acting in support of them did so in the full knowledge of this, and to seek compensation from the state is simply unbelievable.

“That Aidan McKeever should be awarded damages of £75,000 is unfathomable. This may be legally correct, but it isn’t any type of justice that I recognise.”

According to the High Court judge the shooting was not justified.

Mr McKeever sued the MoD over the operation in Clonoe, County Tyrone, almost 20 years ago.

Four IRA men were shot dead after attacking Coalisland police station.

Mr McKeever, 41, was wounded when members of a specialist undercover military unit opened fire on the men in a church car park in Clonoe in February 1992.

Mr Justice Treacy described an account given by one of the soldiers who fired at him as “utterly implausible,” and said that insufficient evidence was called to successfully defend the action.