Select Committee on Northern Ireland Affairs Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witnesses (20-39)



  20. Are the destinations similar for those from the two communities who are expelled, or do a greater proportion of Unionists choose to come to Great Britain?
  (Mr Robinson) In terms of final destination, whether you are from a Unionist community or whether you are from a Nationalist community, the majority would come across to England or Scotland. Obviously, for cultural reasons you would find those from a Unionist community would make England, Scotland or Wales their final destination. The majority coming from a Nationalist community would be inclined to come across to this side of the water as opposed to even going into the Republic of Ireland.
  (Mr Wrigley) I think there is an interesting point here because I have dealt with a number of cases of expulsion where the person is told to get out of the country and they have actually gone south of the border. When it has been a short, sharp retribution it has been possible to negotiate their return, and I have been involved in such negotiations. I would suggest that there is a gradation of seriousness in terms of expulsions. Some are short, sharp raps "clear out for a year or two years", but the ones we are dealing with are life time. We do know that some of those who have been told to clear out for good, when they have come back two or three years later have been assaulted and have had to run for their lives. There is a slight nuance there between the motivation. Nearly all the expulsions which are related to strengthening the grip of the paramilitaries are long-term and, they hope, for life.

Mr Thompson

  21. Good morning, gentlemen. Is it reasonable to assume that most expulsions arise as a result of problems within a community, for example Nationalist problems in Nationalist areas, rather than on a cross-community basis, in other words Unionists versus Nationalists?
  (Mr Wrigley) I would say yes now, but over past years, and when I was involved 17 years ago, it was the reverse. Quite a lot of the expulsions were expulsions of people from the other side but they were sharply to do with threats of violence and what I would call the sharp end of the confrontation. More recently the pendulum has swung in the other direction.
  (Mr Robinson) At this particular point in time the majority of individuals or families with whom I would be involved, or have had involvement, have come from within their own community. The expulsions are for perhaps a variety of reasons and not always the reasons that are necessarily given. By that I mean that very often the common phrase is "anti-social behaviour", and whilst there are those who would involve themselves in that type of activity or behaviour, nonetheless there is a large section of those expelled for other reasons.
  (Mr Wrigley) Could I say that there is also a grey area between, because sometimes the press is told "these are drug dealers and we want them out of our midst" and there is a sort of hero role being played, but very frequently beneath the surface the issue is not that at all, it is under-cutting in terms of drug prices. So they get rid of the person who is a threat to them under the guise of doing this when they themselves are involved. This is something we have come across quite a lot. If I may say so, this just highlights the interface between those who appear to be politically motivated primarily and those who appear to be criminally motivated primarily. Far be it from me, as an Englishman, to explain the nuance of this, but at least when we are facing that situation we have got to recognise that the expulsions can have a primarily criminal intent or a primarily political intent, or a mixture of the two.

  22. You have covered this to some extent, but what information do you have on the reasons given by people for their expulsions? Do you seek to check these out and, if so, what proportion of people who contact the Community actually prove to have genuine reasons for leaving their homes?
  (Mr Wrigley) Firstly, can I say that because we have been involved in most parts of Northern Ireland over many years we have got the facility to verify. We are certainly not a soft option. Indeed, we have been approached by some and have not responded for the very reason that you are suggesting. We find that perhaps the best way of responding is to receive from the person who is about to be expelled, or who has been expelled, their statement, their side of the story, and then to verify particularly with people who do not know them at all, who can perhaps see the situation in perspective. Quite remarkably we have been able to do that. I think it is probably the nature of Northern Ireland that we have found that basic information is available.
  (Mr Robinson) If I could just elaborate there. In real terms of people or families being expelled, I have dealt with a high proportion of those who have not had any involvement with paramilitary organisations or activity and who have been law abiding citizens, who have been upstanding citizens within their own community, and as a result of their not being willing to bow down to the intimidation of the paramilitary groups, or speaking out against the activities of the paramilitaries, or where sometimes representatives of an organisation have imposed a threat on an individual or family where they have reported that matter to the statutory forces of law or order, the result is that they have then had to come out. The concept of people having to come out purely and simply because it is their own fault or they must have been engaged in anti-social or "criminal" behaviour has been used as a cloak or a cover for the activities of the various organisations.
  (Mr Wrigley) I think there is no doubt that some are troublemakers, it would be foolish to deny that. One then questions why has the role of the RUC been circumnavigated, as it were. We know that this is a very sensitive area. Suffice it to say that quite often it is the RUC who advise people to move for their own safety. I think we need to recognise that that has happened over the years. I think you would agree?
  (Mr Robinson) Yes.
  (Mr Wrigley) I think there is a great difficulty in the minds of people who have never been subjected to this fear. I have been into houses where people have been beaten up within ten minutes of the event and grown men are cowering in the corner, terribly cut and bruised. They are traumatised so that when they are told to get out within a week, they get out within an hour. It is when you see people who are totally innocent in that situation that you realise that here are people who have been grievously deprived of basic human rights. There is a lot of debate about human rights currently but the infringement of human rights which is taking place, for a variety of reasons, is monumental. I would make the point that we do understand that there is a difficulty in terms of the RUC in both communities, that people will feel hesitant in being seen to approach the RUC, in being recognised as having given evidence to the RUC. This is a very complex area. We, in our Community, are not involved in politics at all, as you will appreciate, we merely respond to the cry for help, but we do make sure that it is a legitimate cry.

  23. Do you find that the geographical areas are gradually increasing and spreading out more into rural areas?
  (Mr Robinson) Yes, in a nutshell. The reality is that where at one time expulsions could have been identified as appertaining to a specific geographical area, ie the estates within specific towns or cities, the reality now is that the activity has spread into rural areas and into areas where you would never even contemplate that. Obviously, as you are aware, I come from Northern Ireland and there are small areas where one would not expect threats or intimidation to actually be engaged in but it is spreading throughout the rural areas in addition to urban areas.

  Mr Thompson: Thank you very much.

Mr Barnes

  24. Are there any areas that have been reclaimed so that the writ of the paramilitaries engaging in beatings and exiles is not taking place any longer?
  (Mr Wrigley) There are a few, but very, very few. Notably where the outrage among the public is so great the paramilitaries have to hold back, but they are very, very few and far between. We have had instances where, for example, it has got to be known in a group of houses or a neighbourhood prior to the expulsion that the father has been beaten up in front of his children and there is a sense of outrage which goes beyond just the outrage of the assault, and maybe that is an instance—I have come across three cases now—of the way in which pressure is brought to bear on the paramilitaries. This is why they do not like a lot of publicity for some of the beatings.

Mr McGrady

  25. I am concerned about your opinion as to how perhaps the level of expulsion and intimidation, if in fact that is what it is, can be reduced. In most of your evidence you make a passing reference to the police involvement. I am asking you for your opinion. Do you feel that there could be greater police penetration in these areas which are obviously to some degree under the control of the paramilitaries, to forestall these expulsions, or do you think that these particular communities, which are in a sense sometimes ghetto-ised, have a perception of the police, that they are not confident in them or that the police are not acceptable to them?
  (Mr Wrigley) Ideally we would like to see the RUC enter every area and be respected. I have to say that among our membership in Northern Ireland we have very committed Unionists and very committed Nationalists and we hear the differing responses, which you will be all the more familiar with than me, but at the end of the day we have got to face up to the reality of the fact that there are areas, Protestant and Catholic, where people do not feel able to openly approach the RUC. We deliberately do not walk along this road, if I may say so, because there are so many different views and we are not a political movement. We collaborate with the RUC and with any other grouping that has statutory responsibility. It is a very worrying thing that there does not appear to be a policing and, indeed, there does not appear to be a rule of law in many of these areas. Over and over again when we go to Northern Ireland, and we will be there tonight again, people who have really gone through the threats have repeatedly said "we have not got our rights". We are aware that there are swathes of territory in Northern Ireland where this does not apply and we are aware that normal relationships exist. We are talking about the key areas where there is trouble or where there are expulsions and, sadly, those are the areas where people do not have the confidence often to approach the RUC. That is not to criticise the RUC, it is to state a fact.

  26. Thank you for that answer. Can I just extrapolate from what Mr Robinson said about the outward extension of intimidation from what are normally known as paramilitary controlled areas. I find that quite surprising in view of the fact that the controlled areas do not exist usually in rural communities because they are scattered. Therefore, would the intervention of the police in those cases not be much more effective than in the so-called territorial areas of the paramilitaries?
  (Mr Robinson) In terms of this extension, the reality is that individuals and families are put into a state of fear. There is a recognition that their safety cannot be safeguarded 24 hours a day by statutory bodies or by the RUC and consequently people recognise that by and large at any given time and at any given point they can become a victim, either through beating, shooting or any other form of attack. In this particular situation, people feel very much on their own and feel that they have got to deal with the situation in whatever way is possible. I am thinking of one particular case in a small seaside town where even I was slightly taken aback at the family that had been put under particular threat as the paramilitary organisations began to extend their tentacles of control. This family had lived in the house for some 30 years and as regards members of the family, the organisation had all the details, every single detail, even down to very private details. When confronted with that type of evidence then people feel disempowered whenever they are aware that there are those in organisations who know and have very, very detailed information about them. If I could just come back to your initial question. In terms of people's responses and the response of communities and whether or not, for example, effective policing can take place, communities feel very much disempowered. If communities could be empowered to take responsibility for their areas again then perhaps you would see what we would understand as effective policing, effective administration of law and order taking place. That is a feeling that people have, that they do not have the ability to take back control of their own communities. This is across the board. I have been in Loyalist areas, I have been in Republican areas where individuals feel disempowered and are accepting, or have had to become accepting, of the principle that if anything happens you do not go to a statutory body but you have to go to those who are representative of the paramilitary groups. I hope that answers your question.
  (Mr Wrigley) I wonder, Mr McGrady, whether I could just reiterate one thing which was implied in your question. The number of controlled areas has undoubtedly grown during the period of the so-called peace process. This is one thing which we can say categorically from our own experience. The number of areas which are really under tighter control of the paramilitaries is greater now than it was.

  27. That slightly surprises me, but I take your experience. What you are telling me now is that the no-go areas in terms of policing have expanded rapidly since the ceasefire. I will just note that. May I ask you a question regarding the first initial contact, Mr Robinson's remarks regarding empowering the local communities. I do not want to draw you into any political comment. You do not want to go there, I appreciate that. There is a firm proposal now, under the new policing regime, for the creation of district police partnerships, involving the community, the police and presumably local representatives. Do you feel, speaking non politically, of course, that would be a weapon whereby we could challenge the control of paramilitaries and the activities of paramilitaries within our communities?
  (Mr Robinson) From my own perspective that would come down to whether or not the community had confidence in those appointed to such bodies. At the end of the day I do not know if that would enable or facilitate communities to feel a greater sense of empowerment. One interesting situation which I have come across in terms of addressing the issue we touched on earlier regarding the publicity given to activity, and very often where publicity is given to it there is a reduction or a turning off the tap, as it were. I can think of one specific area where there were 30 to 40 names on a list for expulsion and whenever this was highlighted and addressed, all that activity was curtailed. This is what I mean by empowerment of a community. Once it was highlighted and dealt with and indicated that it would go into a greater public arena if this happened, the organisation stepped back.
  (Mr Wrigley) Could I make a very emphatic point, Chairman. The weapon is not just the act of expulsion, the greatest weapon is the threat of expulsion and the threat of expulsion silences people, people who are the very folk who could be pillars of the local community, who could collaborate with goodwill. This is what worries me every time I go to the Province and meet people. I meet people who are saying "I would dearly like to speak out but they have told me `Once again and you are out'". It is the way in which you tackle this which is the big question mark for us as a non political grouping. There are areas, I would have thought, where pressure could be brought to bear and, whereas there is much debate about decommissioning and all the political things which we have no views and do not express any on, it seems to us that the poor folk we are dealing with in their day to day lives are faced with problems which they believe are not being addressed.

  28. Just a final tidy up question if I may, in terms of relationships which you have with policing and enforcement of law and order. You did indicate in your earlier answer that your first point of contact could be either pre-exile or post-exile. Post-exile is a fact, a fait accompli, but in the cases where you are informed or appealed to where expulsion is about to take place, would you automatically include the police in your endeavours to prevent the enforcement of that expulsion threat?
  (Mr Wrigley) We have no doubt at all, as a Christian community, it is our responsibility to collaborate with the police and the courts. It is as simple as that. We do understand historically a lot of the difficulties in Nationalist areas but this is where we are. We cannot move. We believe that sooner or later the rule of law must be a day to day experience in the lives of ordinary people, as opposed to a theoretical exercise or statement. I hope that does not sound too critical, Chairman, we are talking about folk who want to get on with their ordinary lives, a lot of the political debate is two or three steps removed from it.

  Mr McGrady: Thank you very much, gentlemen.

Mr Robinson

  29. Welcome to the Committee, gentlemen. Good morning to you. I have found your evidence very valuable and, indeed, I think you do yourselves considerable credit with demonstrating, as you have, the in-depth knowledge of the subject. I have to say you have somewhat depressed me, mind you, it seems to be a problem which is getting worse if anything rather than better. I am following on from Mr McGrady's questions, I do not detect you can see any remedy to the situation or any way of reversing the threat.
  (Mr Wrigley) I would dearly like to respond to that but it may appear that I am going off at a tangent. Can I say there is a hope in the sense that in our Community we are very pleased with having quite a number of people who have been involved in the meting out of pain and suffering and have found their Christian faith. We find that there is hope if we can take into these communities people who have travelled that road, Catholics and Protestants, preferably walking together. I would wish, Mr Robinson, to say that we are hopeful, in spite of the doom and gloom. In almost every community we are now in touch with people who are committed Protestants and committed Catholics, who in fact have been drawn, to some extent, into the confrontation but who are now walking together. I think there lies the hope. It is more personal than political, I accept, but there is hope.

  30. I am glad I gave you an opportunity to do some outreach work. I wonder if I could ask you about what I might describe as your aftercare, after-contact service. I presume that in cases of expulsion there is some on-going contact. I think some reference was made at an earlier stage about an attempt to negotiate people back in again. Could you give us maybe some background information as to what you do after you have got somebody out of the country and based elsewhere?
  (Mr Wrigley) Before Andrew answers the question in general terms I would just like to be quite specific. On some occasions people have been expelled and in one instance the father was dying of cancer and we had to negotiate for a visit back on the condition that he was out again the same day. There is that kind of follow on. There are other people who have gone through misery at this end. I can give instances of a man who was beaten up and expelled a number of years ago whose wife and three children followed him. There was immense difficulty. The three children, having been brought up on an estate where there was a lot of violence, were in need of constant attention and the man was then followed by the paramilitaries and beaten up in this country. His wife, in the face of the stress of it, committed suicide. We, as a Community, had to help to pick up the pieces. There we have a tragedy. We had more recently a man who came over, perhaps you may care to refer to his case, who had the road accident. It gives an instance of how the need for support in this country when they have not got an extended family around is very great.
  (Mr Robinson) Yes. There are a number of cases which perhaps I could use to exemplify the situation in terms of continued support. First of all I would say that as a Community we have no desire to be intrusive into other people's lives or, having helped people, to be seen to be exercising any degree of control over their life pattern in terms of how they get on with their lives. I say that simply because we, as a Community, are here to serve and to help and we are available as and when people need us. I am thinking of this particular case where, for example, this family had come out—it will soon be two years—and members of the Community put them up in a house. They have beautiful rented accommodation. The husband in the household was involved in a very serious road traffic accident, so serious in fact that he has lost one of his limbs. There was grave concern for other injuries to him. In that particular instance, since their arrival but in particular to this instance, in this road traffic accident, support has continued to be given to the family, emotional support, physical support, and relationships have been maintained with that particular family. If I may say so, the gentleman is making an excellent recovery and even he has indicated that it is down to the prayers of the Community in terms of his recovery. That is a very important fact in terms of his perception of life and of things. Some families will get on with their own lives and we will not hear from them again once they are relocated.
  (Mr Wrigley) I wonder whether I could just interrupt. That family to which Andrew referred I met just three weeks before the accident. They were just burnt up with bitterness that, as ordinary law abiding people, they had been thrown out. He had lost his job, she had lost her job, the children had friends over there, were coming to and fro from this country to there. There was a complete sense of fluidity and lack of stability but they did have the knowledge that they were loved and cared for in the community where we settled them. I want to make it very clear, that strange to say, good has come out of evil. As a result of that crisis they now are more integrated as a family and more at peace. They are still an uprooted family, they are still, if you like, refugees.

  31. What proportion of those who are expelled are seeking to get back to Northern Ireland?
  (Mr Robinson) It is difficult to put an actual percentage on it but a high proportion of those—
  (Mr Wrigley) Very high.
  (Mr Robinson) —would desire to be back amongst family, back within a culture that they are familiar with. All I can say is that the majority with whom I have been involved would be desirous to get back home.

  32. Of that percentage how many have managed to get back?
  (Mr Wrigley) Very few.
  (Mr Robinson) I am thinking over a period of time now, just bear with me, be patient. I am thinking of one specific family which was able to get back—I beg your pardon, two specific families who ultimately were able to get back. We are talking over a period of maybe one to two years. Other individuals, and I am thinking of one particular case of a 13 year old boy, we were able to negotiate to get him back into an area, not back into his own area but certainly back into the country.
  (Mr Wrigley) Could I say that in a number of instances quite young people are excluded, not for misbehaviour, they are excluded because they are wanting to put pressure on the parents. When the parents place money on the table then the youngsters are allowed back. I have come across this on three occasions in the last two years.
  (Mr Robinson) In terms of the ongoing care, again thinking of a particular situation where a young man had lost his job in Northern Ireland and the reason for the loss of his job was because of intimidation. He went through tremendous trauma and ultimately, because it was a national company, he reapplied over here and they refused to accept him because his employers had given a very poor reference. That was down to the fact that his illness had kept him off work. We were able to work very hard there in terms of proving that in actual fact he was a good worker and in actual fact he would be an asset to the company. We were able to get that company's decision turned on its head. That also involved some of his local political representatives being supportive as well in that particular instance. That illustrates how, again—a family who had absolutely no connection with any paramilitary organisation—their local representatives felt they were able to give support to that particular case. I am thinking of a family that we have been working with—another family—for three or four years, in terms of the difficulties. When we talk about difficulties, it is not just the difficulty of relocating and settling, it is ongoing emotional support, it is ongoing dealing with, for example, particular claims and helping them to get medical evidence to support claims. It is also—and this is one of the great tragedies—where, for example, offences have been committed against people and there are court hearings going on in Northern Ireland, in certain cases sometimes they have to get back to Northern Ireland, in and back out on the same day. I am talking about working class people, I am talking about people on Unemployment Benefit, they then have to fund their own passage back to Northern Ireland. I think of one particular case—and I hope I am not going off at a tangent, Chairman—to illustrate some of the difficulties. This family had saved up to enable their family member to return for this hearing and it was a case of getting in that day, slipping back out that night. The flight had just taken off and they received a telephone call to say that the court hearing had been cancelled, it had been deferred to another date. These are some of the harsh realities. Last year we were involved in working with a man who had come out 20 years ago and had encountered severe difficulties. I do not know if that helps to illustrate.
  (Mr Wrigley) I wonder whether I could add also to the fact that when someone leaves, the human need is very often still there at home, in greater measure indeed. Very often we work with local churches and voluntary bodies and agencies to give them support in Northern Ireland. Sometimes, for example, three members out of a family of four will leave and the remaining member feels isolated and dejected and in need of support. The advantage we have is having people on either side of the water so we can give some measure of encouragement and support of a practical nature.
  (Mr Robinson) If I perhaps could illustrate some of the ironies in this type of situation. I can think of one family I am currently working with in Northern Ireland, giving support to, who again needed medical support in Northern Ireland and could not get to their GP. Yet from where we were based, we ended up getting them the appointment to see their GP in Northern Ireland.
  (Mr Wrigley) I think it is important to look at nuts and bolts. If someone leaves their home in entirety, what happens to that home in terms of safety and security? This is a huge problem. Very often we have had to arrange for vans to come and we have had to negotiate safe entry and exit of those vans. Even then the drivers of the vans have themselves been threatened. It is not just a clear running away from a home in which one family had been living for 32 years, it is a question of trying to sort out all the mess of the mortgage, of the property, of the furnishings and being able to put them in the place where they should be. I feel, Chairman, it is tremendously important for people to realise the nature of the problem is extremely complex in terms of the human need. There are so many facets to the cries for help.
  (Mr Robinson) In terms of the complexity, Chairman, again to illustrate so that perhaps we can get a real feel. It is not just a case of saying "We will move you to such and such a city or such and such a town", we really do endeavour to look at the real needs which are presented within that family. Now, for example, if I move them into a particular city, I have then got to think of which school their children will go to because if there is already a family from Northern Ireland in that area, possibly attending that school, people are absolutely terrified that someone else will identify them. I think of a lady who had tremendous emotional problems and was being cared for and, again, we had to look at where we would place her so she would get the support from the statutory bodies that she needed. It is not just a case of saying "We will move you to here" or "We will move you to there", we also have to think of areas in this country where there would be support given to organisations by communities in this country as well.
  (Mr Wrigley) There is just one final point I would add to that and that is the confidentiality has got to be of a very high order. People who have been thrown out feel extremely vulnerable and want to change their identity and get lost in the crowd. They are very, very sensitive to being identified and yet when we go to the local authorities or housing associations they have to be identified. There are very, very delicate issues to be concerned with there. A very high proportion of the people I have met, especially the men, do feel they are being followed when often they are not, in most cases they are not, but because of the nature of the situation they are hyper-sensitive to this. For example, some are very hyper-sensitive to the police, others will be hyper-sensitive to anyone with any political role at all, irrespective of the party. We have to encourage them to recognise that there is goodwill towards them and there are people who are prepared to stand with them.

  Chairman: I think we had better put slightly more structure in. We pride ourselves that we try and ask about everything that we need to know about, I think there will be further opportunity for illustrations.

Mr Robinson

  33. Just one very quick question, which comes from a comment you have made. I am getting more and more the impression that expulsion is not a final act as far as paramilitaries, that there seems to be at least a fear that they are coming after them, that they are in hiding as opposed to having been expelled and that is the punishment in itself.
  (Mr Wrigley) I think it is a minority but it is a very serious minority. If one person has been followed it gets around. We had one case of a man—I must not give the area—who moved into a community and was taken away, 20 miles away, and was roughed up. The purpose for that roughing up was to remind him that he must never ever return to Northern Ireland. The very clear purpose was not to get information from him or to punish him again, it was to reinforce "We do not want you back".

Mr Barnes

  34. Good morning, gentlemen. You will have touched upon the first question which I raise but it will probably set the scene for the other questions I want to pursue. A justification or excuse often given for the punishment beatings and people being placed into exile is this is rough justice. It is a substitute for policing and maybe prosecuting and executing as well at the same time. Can you elaborate on your response?
  (Mr Wrigley) Yes. I think it is seen as being substitutionary both in the minds of the people inflicting the punishment and those who are receiving it. I want to reiterate again it is a minority. Where there is the concept of this being another de facto exercise of law and order, it is accepted because there is no other de facto exercise of authority in some of these areas. I find it extremely difficult to put into words but when you go into some of the hard line estates, the question of who really rules on a day to day basis is not there. Your house is broken into, you will inform the local paramilitary leader, first port of call. You will not inform the RUC. You would accept that would you not, Andrew?
  (Mr Robinson) Yes.

  35. Earlier you made a distinction between two types of paramilitary action involved in this.
  (Mr Wrigley) Yes.

  36. There was the old guard who had a political agenda and it might be very much tied in with that type of activity, yet it might spill over to what they saw as their crude form of policing. Then there was what might be described as IRA plc, people in this in order to engage in rackets and to extend their authority for their own commercial reasons.
  (Mr Wrigley) I understand the question. I think there is a grey area between the two and it is, with regard to individuals, whether for criminal or political reasons, they have got to build up their own power base and their own street credibility. This is how it works. The individual who exercises the power to expel, or to threaten to expel, perceives of himself being built up in his power base on that estate.

  37. To pursue the matter in what might be claimed as being responses to criminal activities, do you have any estimates of the proportions of those who, say, are forced into exile with some argument behind it that this is a criminal activity and those who are being pushed out for reasons that do not have that veneer of excuse behind it?
  (Mr Wrigley) I think we are talking about a prima facie accusation, are we not, here? The statement is being made whether the people had any legitimate right to throw them out, and they did have a motive for punishing the criminal. We have not discussed this before this meeting but my understanding would be that it is a very small minority and in any case there is an overlap between the criminal act and the family. There are quite a number of families where there are young boys who misbehave and ostensibly the boys are punished for misbehaving but the real target is the family and very often the man who is politically getting in the way. I would like Andrew to answer that question in terms of proportion. As far as I am concerned it is a minority.
  (Mr Robinson) Again, in terms of hard figures, as I was saying earlier, the majority of folk I have dealt with have not had involvement. Some of those with whom I have had involvement who have been put out on the basis of criminal activity have actually already served a judicial sentence for their crime and consequently are expelled from their area upon release from prison. That is to send a statement to a community, it is not necessarily true to say that a community does not want the individual back but what it is to say is that those in control of that area are using the situation to reinforce their control, their authority and to make a statement as to who enforces the law in that area.

  38. How large would that group be, the people who have criminal sentences and then they are given the extra punishment of being forced out by paramilitaries? You describe the grouping that you are talking about as being a small minority of people, is this a small minority of the small minority?
  (Mr Robinson) Yes, a minority of the minority.
  (Mr Wrigley) Yes, I would say that.

  39. Are there particular claimed offences that are more prominent than others being given as justifications for the people being placed into exile, not just the criminal argument but maybe other grounds on which it is being done which are given to you time and time again as reasons for why people are being chased?
  (Mr Wrigley) Drugs is a very emotive word so that is used, sometimes it is used unfairly and inaccurately of people in order to gain public support for exclusion. At the end of the day a lot of the expulsions are not appended to a reason. There is not a reason given, it is part of the strategy of control. In my judgment there are a number of areas where it is purely geographical. There will be a great area where it is important that everybody on that estate in that area is aware of the control of the paramilitaries. They will reach into part of that quite deliberately so the neighbours and friends in that district are aware. It is an extremely complex strategy which is followed but it is all to do with asserting control.

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