Royal Ulster Constabulary


Royal Ulster Constabulary

The Royal Ulster Constabulary GC was the name of the police force in Northern Ireland from 1922 to 2001. It was founded on 1 June 1922 out of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC), the Belfast Borough Police Force and the Londonderry Borough Police Force (known colloquially as the "Derry City Force" - a name which stayed for many years) [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p5] . At its peak the force had around 8500 officers with a further 4500 reservists, who were members of the RUC Reserve. During the Troubles, over 300 members of the RUC were killed and almost 9,000 injured in paramilitary assassinations or attacks, mostly by the Provisional IRA, which made the RUC the most dangerous police force in the world of which to be a member [ [http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2000/n.ireland/police.html CNN] ] .

It became the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) in 2001. The RUC was not disbanded, but renamed (with assorted simultaneous reforms), as is provided for by the final version of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000. [ [http://www.opsi.gov.uk/acts/acts2000/00032--b.htm#prof www.opsi.gov.uk] ] The RUC was continually accused by sections of the Nationalist community and human rights' groups of one-sided policing and discrimination, and collusion with Loyalist paramilitaries. Conversely, the RUC was praised by security forces as one of the most professional policing operations in the world. [cite news
title=The RUC: Lauded and condemned
work=BBC News
publisher=bbc.co.uk
date=2001-10-31
url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/in_depth/uk/2000/ruc_reform/780311.stm
accessdate=2007-06-05
quote=Condemned by republicans, nationalists and human rights groups for embodying sectarianism and lauded by security forces as one of the most professional police operations in the world, the Royal Ulster Constabulary is one of the most controversial police forces in the UK.
] The allegations regarding collusion have prompted several inquiries, the most recent of which was published by Police Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan.

Early history

Under section 60 of the Government of Ireland Act 1920, the six counties making up Northern Ireland were placed under the jurisdiction of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC). On 31 January 1921, Richard Dawson Bates, the first Minister of Home Affairs for Northern Ireland, appointed a committee of inquiry on police organisation in Northern Ireland. It was asked to advise on any alterations to the existing police necessary for the formation of a new force (i.e. recruitment and conditions of service, composition, strength and cost).

An interim report was published on 28 March 1922, the first official report of the new Parliament of Northern Ireland, and it was subsequently accepted by the Northern Ireland Government. On 29 April 1922, King George V granted to the force the name Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC). In May, the Parliament of Northern Ireland passed the 1922 Constabulary Act and the RUC officially came into existence on 1 June. The headquarters of the force was established at Atlantic Buildings, Waring Street, in Belfast, and became the first Inspector General. The uniform remained essentially the same as that of the RIC: a dark green uniform as opposed to the dark blue worn by the British police and the Garda Síochána. A new badge of the red hand of Ulster on a St George's cross surrounded by a chain was designed but proved unpopular and was never uniformly adopted, eventually the Harp & Crown insignia of the Order of St Patrick worn by the RIC was readopted. [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p17]

From the beginning it had a dual role, unique among United Kingdom police forces, of providing a normal law enforcement police service while protecting Northern Ireland from the activities of proscribed groups. For personal protection its members were armed as the RIC had been.

The RUC was to be a 3000 strong force. It had the support of the Ulster Special Constabulary, a volunteer body of part-time auxiliary police who were given uniforms and training. The RUC's senior officer, the Inspector General, was appointed by the Governor of Northern Ireland and was responsible to the Minister of Home Affairs in the Northern Ireland Government for the maintenance of law and order.

Neither the newly established Irish Free State nor Northern Ireland had an auspicious beginning. The polarised political climate in Northern Ireland resulted in violence from both sides of the political and religious divide. The lawlessness that affected Northern Ireland in the period of the early twenties, and the problems it caused for the police, are indicated in a police report drawn up by District Inspector R.R. Spears in February 1923. Referring to the situation in Belfast after July 1921 he states:

"For twelve months after that, the city was in a state of turmoil. The IRA (Irish Republican Army) was responsible for an enormous number of murders, bombings, shootings and incendiary fires. The work of the police against them was, however, greatly hampered by the fact that the rough element on the Protestant side entered thoroughly into the disturbances, met murder with murder and adopted in many respects the tactics of the rebel gunmen. In the endeavour to cope simultaneously with the warring factions the police efforts were practically nullified. They were quite unable to rely on the restraint of one party while they dealt with the other".

By the mid-twenties the situation had calmed down. The 1920s and 1930s were years of economic austerity. Many of Northern Ireland's traditional industries, notably linen and shipbuilding, were in recession. This contributed to the already high level of unemployment. Serious rioting broke out in 1932 in Belfast in protest at the inadequate nature of Poor Law relief and the threat of rioting was ever present.

In response to the growth of motorised transport the RUC Traffic Branch was formed on 1 January 1930. In 1936 the police depot at Enniskillen was formally opened and an £800,000 scheme to create a network of 196 police barracks throughout Northern Ireland by rationalizing or repairing the 224 premises inherited from the RIC was under way. In May 1937 a new white glass lamp with the RUC crest went up for the first time to replace the RIC crest still on many stations. About the same time the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) in Belfast was significantly expanded, with a detective head constable being appointed to head the CID force in each of the five Belfast police districts.

Sporadic IRA activity in the 1930s also required that the RUC be vigilant. In 1937, on the occasion of the visit of the King and Queen to the province, the IRA blew up a number of customs posts. In 1939. an IRA bombing campaign was launched in England. This campaign effectively ended on the 25 August, a few days before the outbreak of the Second World War.

The war brought additional responsibilities for the police. The security of the land border with neutral Ireland was one important consideration. Allied to this was a greatly increased incidence of smuggling due to rationing, to the point where police virtually became revenue officers. There were also many wartime regulations to be enforced, including 'black-out' requirements on house and vehicle lights, the protection of post office and bank monies, and restrictions on the movement of vehicles and use of petrol. The RUC was a 'reserved occupation', i.e. the police force was deemed essential to the war effort on the Home Front and its members were forbidden to leave to join the other services.

The wartime situation gave a new urgency to the discussions regarding the appointment of women police. The Ministry of Home Affairs finally gave approval to the enrolment of women as members of the RUC on 16 April 1943. with the first six recruits starting on 15 November.

Post-war policies brought about the gradual improvement in the lot of the RUC, interrupted only by a return to hostilities by the IRA. The IRA's 'border campaign' of 1957-1962 killed seven RUC officers. The force was streamlined in the 1960s, a new headquarters was opened at Knock in Belfast and a number of rural barracks were closed. In 1967, the forty-two hour working week was introduced.

Policing in a divided society

Policing Northern Ireland's divided society proved difficult, as each community (nationalist and unionist) had different attitudes towards the institutions of the state (Weitzer 1985, 1995). To unionists, the state had full legitimacy, as did its institutions, its parliament, the Crown and its police force. Northern Ireland's Catholics, most, but not all of them Nationalists, had been told by their leaders that Partition was temporary. [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p27] They and their politicians had therefore refused to take part in the Province's institutions in the mistaken belief that Northern Ireland would be ceded to the South. [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p27] The Catholic Church had forbidden any kind of fraternisation with Protestants, Cardinal McCrory even going so far as to publicly state that: "The Protestant Church in Ireland - and the same is true of the Protestant Church anywhere - is not only not the rightful representative of the early Irish Church, but it is not even a part of the Church of Christ" [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p27] This, plus a Unionist fear of fundamental government services being infiltrated by Catholics disloyal to the new state, polarised society and made many Catholics unwilling to join the police or civil service. [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabularly GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p27]

This mindset was expressed by David Trimble in the following terms: "Ulster Unionists, fearful of being isolated on the island, built a solid house, but it was a cold house for Catholics. And northern nationalists, although they had a roof over their heads, seemed to us as if they meant to burn the house down" [ [http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/peace/laureates/1998/trimble-lecture.html David Trimble - Nobel Lecture ] ] .

As policing is by definition the upholding of the law and order of the existing institutional structures, it is not surprising then that the RUC became closely identified with the state, through its largely Protestant and unionist membership, its use of the word 'Royal' in the title and its use of flags and emblems of the northern state and the United Kingdom of which Northern Ireland is a part.

Throughout its existence, republican political leaders urged members of the nationalist community not to join the RUC. Social Democratic and Labour Party Member of Parliament (MP) and critic of the force Seamus Mallon, who later served as Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland, claimed the RUC was "97% Protestant and 100% unionist."

The RUC did attract some Roman Catholic members. These men were for the most part former members of the RIC, who came north from the Irish Republic after the partition of the island. The bitterness of the fighting in the Anglo-Irish War precluded them from remaining in territory now controlled by their former enemies. The percentage of Catholics in the RUC dropped as these men retired over time Fact|date=February 2007.

However, IRA attacks on Catholics who joined the RUC, and the perception that the police force was "a Protestant force for a Protestant people" meant that Catholic participation in the Royal Ulster Constabulary always remained disproportionally small in terms of the Catholic percentage of the overall Northern Irish population. Notable exceptions include RUC Chief Constable Sir James Flanagan KBE (Derry), Deputy Chief Constable Michael McAtamney, Assistant Chief Constable Cathal Ramsey, Chief Superintendent Frank Lagan [ [http://www.ruthdudleyedwards.co.uk/Journalism05/IrInd05_37.htm] ] as well as RUC Superintendents Kevin Benedict Sheehy (Glengormley) and Brendan McGuigan.

In December 1997, London's "The Independent" newspaper published a leaked internal RUC document which reported that a third of all Catholic RUC officers had suffered religious discrimination and/or harassment from Protestant fellow officers [ [http://www.serve.com/~pfc/survey/ Survey ] ] .

The Troubles

The rise of Catholic civil rights protests at the end of the 1960s marked the beginning of the Troubles. The RUC continued its traditional pro-unionist role when it found itself confronting marchers protesting at the gerrymandering of local governmental electoral wards and the discrimination in local housing allocation. Many of these Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association protests were banned by the government of Northern Ireland, but often the marches went ahead regardless. The events at Duke Street in Derry and Burntollet Bridge, in east County Londonderry, were particularly notable for the brutality used.

The B Specials, proved highly controversial to some, with the unit seen by some nationalists as much more anti-Catholic and anti-nationalist than the RUC, which unlike the B Specials attracted some Catholic recruits. The severe pressure on the RUC and B-Specials led, during the Northern Ireland riots of August 1969, to the British Army being called in to support the civil administration under Operation Banner. Initially the army was welcomed by Catholic nationalists in preference to the RUC and in particular the B Specials (who were stood down on 30 April 1970). However, heavy handed army behaviour, most notably on Bloody Sunday (when thirteen people were shot dead in the aftermath of a civil rights march), soon saw the minority Catholic population turn against the Army.

The high level of civil disturbance led to an exhaustive inquiry into the disturbances in Northern Ireland carried out by the distinguished English judge Lord Scarman, the then Home Secretary, James Callaghan, called on Lord Hunt to assess and advise on the policing situation. He was assisted in this task by Sir Robert Mark, who later became Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, and Sir James Robertson, the then Chief Constable of Glasgow.

The report was published on 3 October 1969 and most of the recommendations subsequently accepted and implemented. The aim being a complete reorganisation of the RUC, with the aim of both modernizing the force and bringing it into line with the other police forces in the UK. This meant the introduction of the British rank and promotion structure, the creation of 12 Police Divisions and 39 Sub-Divisions, the disbandment of the Ulster Special Constabulary [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/low/dates/stories/october/10/newsid_3146000/3146929.stm BBC] ] , and the creation of a Police Authority representative of the whole community.Callaghan asked Sir Arthur Young, Commissioner of the City of London Police, to be seconded for a year. Young's appointment began the long process of turning the RUC into a British police service. The RUC Reserve was formed as an auxiliary police force, and all military-style duties were handed over to the newly formed Ulster Defence Regiment, which was under military command and replaced the B Specials. The Ulster Defence Regiment would in turn would eventually be replaced, amidst allegations that it too was sectarian, by the Royal Irish Regiment.

Callaghan picked Young, a career policeman, because no other British policeman could match his direct experience of policing acutely unstable societies and of reforming gendarmeries. From 1943 to 1945, he was Director of Public Safety and Director of Security in the military government of Allied-occupied Italy. Later, he had been seconded to the Federation of Malaya at the height of the 'Emergency' (1952-1953) and to the crown colony of Kenya during Mau Mau (1954) [ [http://www.psni.police.uk/index/pg_police_museum/pg_academic_research/pg_sir_arthur_young.htm Sir Arthur Young ] ] .

The first deaths of the Troubles occurred in July 1969. 67-year old Francis McCloskey, a Catholic civilian, died on 14 July [ [http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/sutton/chron/1969.html CAIN-1969] ] , a day after being beaten around the head with batons by RUC officers in Dungiven. The police had baton-charged a crowd leaving a dance hall after disturbances relating to an Orange Order parade in the town the day before. Samuel Devenny, another civilian, died on 17 July, as a result of a beating he had sustained in his home from the RUC in Derry in April. His teenage daughters were also beaten during the incident. In August 1969, the RUC killed the third and the first child victim of the troubles, in Belfast. Nine-year old Patrick Rooney was shot as he lay in bed by policemen firing from a moving truck.

On 11 October 1969, Constable Victor Arbuckle was shot by loyalists on Belfast's Shankill Road during serious rioting in protest at the recommendations of the Hunt Report. He became the first police fatality of The Troubles. In August 1970, two young constables, Donaldson and Millar, died when an abandoned car they were examining near Crossmaglen exploded. They became the first victims of the re-organized Provisional Irish Republican Army (PIRA) campaign.

In March 1972, the Government of Northern Ireland resigned and the parliament was prorogued. Northern Ireland subsequently came under direct rule from Westminster with its own Secretary of State, who had overall responsibility for security policy.

Starting in late 1982, a number of PIRA and Irish National Liberation Army (INLA) men who were en route to engage the Army/RUC were shot dead by the RUC, usually at checkpoints. The constant and prolonged nature of these incidents led to accusations of a shoot-to-kill policy by the RUC. The British government set up the Stalker Inquiry to investigate. In September 1983, four officers were charged with murder as a result of the inquiry, although all were subsequently found not guilty.

In May 1986 John Hermon, then Chief Constable, publicly accused Unionist politicians of "consorting with paramilitary elements." Anger at the Anglo-Irish Agreement led to unionists attacking over 500 homes, of Catholics and RUC officers. 150 RUC families were forced to move as a result of the intimidation.

In 1998 Chief Constable Ronnie Flanagan said in a television interview that he was unhappy with any RUC officers belonging to the Orange Order or any of the other loyal orders. While the RUC refused to give any details on how many officers were members of the Order, 39 RUC officers are listed on the Order's Roll of Honour (of Orangemen killed in the conflict). If this is was a representative cross-section, it would mean 13% of the force were members of the Orange Order. Many officers were suspended for taking part in protests of banned or rerouted marches.

The size of the RUC increased on several occasions. At its height, there were 8,500 regular police officers supported by about 5,000 full-time and part-time reserve officers, making it the second largest force in the United Kingdom after the Metropolitan Police in London. The direction and control of the RUC was in the hands in the Chief Constable, who was assisted by two Deputy Chief Constables and nine Assistant Chief Constables. For operational purposes, Northern Ireland was divided into twelve Divisions and 39 Sub-Divisions. RUC ranks, duties, conditions of service and pay were generally in line with those of police forces in Great Britain.

Awards

Awards for gallantry for individual officers since 1969 included 16 George Medals, 103 Queen's Gallantry Medals, 111 Queen's Commendations for Bravery and 69 Queen's Police Medals.

On 12 April 2000, the RUC was awarded the George Cross for bravery in dealing with terrorist threat, [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/april/12/newsid_2478000/2478009.stm Queen honours NI police] , BBC] a rare honour which had only been awarded collectively once before, to the island nation of Malta.

Casualties

Officially, 314 officers were killed and over 9000 were injured during the history of the RUC. All but 12 of the dead were killed in the the Troubles (1969 to 1998), of whom 277 were killed in attacks by Irish Republican groupings. [The Thin Green Line - The History of the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC, Richard Doherty, published by Pen & Sword Books - ISBN 1-84415058-5 p271] However, according to the CAIN project at the University of Ulster [ [http://www.cain.ulst.ac.uk/sutton/tables/Status.html CAIN: Sutton Index of Deaths ] ] , 301 active RUC officers were killed and 18 "ex-RUC officers", which would total 319 fatalities during the Troubles.

Patten Report

The Belfast Agreement produced a whole scale reorganisation of inter-community, governmental and policing systems, including a power-sharing executive with David Trimble and the nationalist Social Democratic and Labour Party's (SDLP) Seamus Mallon (later replaced by new party leader Mark Durkan) as co-chairmen. The perceived bias, and the clear under-representation of Catholics and nationalists, in the RUC meant that as part of the Good Friday Agreement (1998) there was a fundamental policing review.

The review was headed by Chris Patten, a former Hong Kong Governor and British Conservative Minister under Margaret Thatcher, and published in September 1999. It recommended a wholesale reorganisation of policing, with the Royal Ulster Constabulary being renamed the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), and a greater drive to recruit Catholic recruits and should adopt a new crest and cap badge.

The PSNI was introduced in November 2001 (full title: The Police Service of Northern Ireland (incorporating the Royal Ulster Constabulary GC). As part of the change, the police service dropped the word 'Royal' from everyday usage and adopted a new badge that included the crown, harp, and shamrock - the symbols used by the RUC and RIC - each with an identification with one or other community.

The Stevens Inquiry

On 18 April 2003 as part of the third report into collusion between Loyalist paramilitaries, RUC, and British Army, Sir John Stevens published an Overview and Recommendations document (Stevens 3). [Overview and Recommendations document for Stevens 3 is available in PDF format [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/2956337.stm here] .] Stevens intention was to make recommendations which arose from serious shortcomings he had identified in all three Enquiries. [For a chronology of the Stevens Inquiries and surrounding events see BBC News 17 April 2003 available [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/2954383.stm here.] ]

The third Stevens Inquiry began in 1999, and referred to his previous reports when making his recommendations. Stevens began his report by saying:

"My Enquiries have highlighted collusion, the wilful failure to keep records, the absence of accountability, the withholding of intelligence and evidence, and the extreme of agents being involved in murder. These serious acts and omissions have meant that people have been killed or seriously injured." [Stevens 3 Overview and Recommendations document Page 3]

Stevens third inquiry focused in detail on only two of the murders in which collusion is alleged; the murder of Brian Adam Lambert in 1987 & the killing of Pat Finucane in 1989. Stevens 3 also included investigation into a small number of related agent case histories, agents known as Covert Human Intelligence Sources (CHIS). This included looking into allegations made by members of the Force Research Unit (FRU), and some of the activities of Ulster Defence Association (UDA) assets William Alfred Stobie and Brian Nelson.

Stevens used the following criteria as a definition of collusion while conducting his investigation:
*The failure to keep records or the existence of contradictory accounts which could limit the opportunity to rebut serious allegations.
*The absence of accountability which could allow acts or omissions by individuals to go undetected.
*The withholding of information which could impede the prevention of crime and the arrest of suspects.
*The unlawful involvement of agents in murder which could imply that the security forces sanction killings. [Conclusions section of Stevens 3 Overview and Recommendations document Page 16]

Stephens also pointed out that his investigation had been obstructed:

"Throughout my three Enquiries I recognised that I was being obstructed. This obstruction was cultural in its nature and widespread within parts of the Army and the RUC. I am confident that through the investigative efforts of my Enquiry team, I have managed to overcome it and achieve the overall objectives of my Enquiry." [Stevens 3 Overview and Recommendations document Page 13]

Stevens, in the Conclusion's section of the document stated:

"I have uncovered enough evidence to lead me to believe that the murders ofPatrick Finucane and Brian Adam Lambert could have been prevented. I also believe that the RUC investigation of Patrick Finucane’s murder should have resulted in the early arrest and detection of his killers.

I conclude there was collusion in both murders [Brian Adam Lambert's & Finucane's] and the circumstances surrounding them. Collusion is evidenced in many ways. This ranges from the wilful failure to keep records, the absence of accountability, the withholding of intelligence and evidence, through to the extreme of agents being involved in murder.

My three Enquiries have found all these elements of collusion [above] to be present. The co-ordination, dissemination and sharing of intelligence were poor. Informants and agents were allowed to operate without effective control and to participate in terrorist crimes. Nationalists were known to be targeted but were not properly warned or protected. Crucial information was withheld from Senior Investigating Officers. Important evidence was neither exploited nor preserved." [Conclusions section of Stevens 3 Overview and Recommendations document Page 16]

Noted in the report was that as a result of the Stevens 3 inquiries and up to the date of publication there had been 144 arrests with 94 people convicted, along with 57 separate reports submitted to the Northern Ireland Director of Public Prosecutions.

Reaction to Stevens 3

The SDLP demanded to know how much former chief constables of the RUC knew about the collusion. During the time period under investigation Sir Hugh Annesley and Sir Ronnie Flanagan both filled senior management positions in the RUC including the office of chief constable. The SDLP also demanded to know how much then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Tom King and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher knew of the activities.

Sinn Féin have said that the full publication of the Stevens Reports has been suppressed and Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams said that the "... limited publication of this Stevens Report is only the tip of the iceberg". [ [http://www.sinnfein.ie/news/detail/252 Sinn Féin: Adams - Stevens only the tip of the iceberg ] ] In December 2006 Sinn Féin's Philip McGuigan said that all three Stevens reports should be published in full. [ [http://www.sinnfein.ie/gaelic/news/detail/17147 Sinn Féin: Call to publish in full Stevens Reports into collusion ] ]

Nationalists continue to demand a full public sworn inquiry into the events with proven collusion like the Finucane murder, and all cases where collusion has been alleged. David Trimble, the leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, called for a parliamentary inquiry into the collusion.

It is notable that the new first Chief Constable of the PSNI, Hugh Orde, before his appointment, served at a senior level within the Stevens Inquiry team. He has insisted that the errors and the collusion within the RUC documented in the Stevens Report (the third issued by Sir John Stevens) will not be allowed to happen under the new police service.

Alleged Loyalist collusion

Elements of the RUC are alleged to have colluded extensively with loyalist paramilitaries throughout the 30 year conflict in Northern Ireland. Particularly prominent in this regard were the actions of the specialist anti-terrorist unit, the Special Patrol Group. This unit was formed in the early 1970s and was disbanded in 1980 after two of its members were convicted of terrorist offences including kidnap and murder. The two, John Weir and Billy McCaughey implicated their colleagues in a range of crimes including giving weapons, information and transport to loyalist paramilitaries as well as carrying out shooting and bombing attacks of their own. [ [http://www.nd.edu/~cchr/publications/IIP_final_11_06_06.pdf Center for Civil & Human Rights // Law School // University of Notre Dame ] ] In a report released on the 22 January 2007, the Police Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan stated Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) informers committed serious crimes, including murder, with the full knowledge of their handlers. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/bsp/hi/pdfs/22_01_07_ballast.pdf Statement by the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland on her investigations into the circumstances surrounding the death of Raymond McCord Junior and related matters] ] The report alleged Special Branch officers created false statements, blocked evidence searches and "baby-sat" suspects during interviews. Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) councillor and former Police Federation chairman Jimmy Spratt said if the report "had had one shred of credible evidence then we could have expected charges against former Police Officers. There are no charges, so the public should draw their own conclusion, the report is clearly based on little fact". [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/6286657.stm BBC News, Monday, 22 January 2007. "Reaction to Ombudsman's report"] ] However, Northern Ireland Secretary of State Peter Hain said that he was "convinced that at least one prosecution will arise out of today's report". [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/6286695.stm BBC News, Monday, 22 January 2007. "NI police colluded with killers"] ]

Chief Officers

The chief officer of the Royal Irish Constabulary was its Inspector-General (the last of whom, Sir Thomas J. Smith served from 11 March 1920 until partition in 1922). Between 1922 and 1969 the position of Inspector-General of the RUC was held by five officers, the last being Sir Arthur Young, who was seconded for a year from the City of London Police to implement the Hunt Report and disarm the police and disband the Ulster Special Constabulary ('B' Specials). Under Young the title was changed to Chief Constable in line with the recommendations of the Hunt Report. Young and six others held the job until the RUC was incorporated to the new Police Service. The final incumbent, Sir Ronnie Flanagan, became the first Chief Constable of the PSNI.

*Inspector-General Sir Charles Wickham, from June 1922.
*Inspector-General Sir Richard Pim, from August 1945.
*Inspector-General Sir Albert Kennedy, from January 1961.
*Inspector-General J.A. Peacock, from February 1969.
*Chief Constable Sir Arthur Young, from November 1969.
*Chief Constable Sir Graham Shillington, from November 1970.
*Chief Constable Sir James Flanagan, from November 1973.
*Chief Constable Sir Kenneth Newman, from May 1976.
*Chief Constable Sir John Hermon, from January 1980.
*Chief Constable Sir Hugh Annesley, from June 1989.
*Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan, from October 1996-November 2001, continuing as Chief Constable of the PSNI until April 2002

Ranks

*Chief Constable
*Deputy Chief Constable
*Assistant Chief Constable
*Chief Superintendent
*Superintendent
*Chief Inspector
*Inspector
*Sergeant
*Constable
*Reserve Constable

References

Further reading

*Weitzer, Ronald, 1985. "Policing a Divided Society: Obstacles to Normalization in Northern Ireland," "Social Problems", v. 33 (October), p. 41-55.
*Weitzer, Ronald, 1995. "Policing Under Fire: Ethnic Conflict and Police-Community Relations in Northern Ireland" (Albany, NY: State University of New York Press).

External links

* [http://www.psni.police.uk/ Police Service of Northern Ireland]
* [http://www.royalulsterconstabulary.org Royal Ulster Constabulary GC Memorial Website]
* [http://www.ukpolice.org/rucroll/index.htm RUC GC Roll of Honour]
* http://www.policememorial.org.uk/Forces/IRELAND/RUCGC_Roll.htm RUC Roll of Honour


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  • Royal Irish Constabulary — Police royale irlandaise La Police royale irlandaise (Royal Irish Constabulary=RIC) a été créée par la Grande Bretagne en 1822 pour maintenir l ordre en Irlande. Elle comptait plus de 8 600 policiers protestants en 1841. Elle participa au… …   Wikipédia en Français


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