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NI Secretary to decide whether to hold Pat Finucane murder inquiry 'by end of November'

Finucane was shot by loyalist paramilitaries in front of his family in Belfast.

Image: PA Images

THE NORTHERN IRELAND Secretary of State Brandon Lewis has said he will make a decision before the end of next month on whether to hold a public inquiry into the murder of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane.

The 39 year-old was shot by loyalist paramilitaries in front of his family in Belfast in 1989 amid claims of collusion with state security forces.

Members of the IRA had been among his clients.

In the UK High Court today, Lewis committed to making a decision on holding the public inquiry by 30 November.

Peter Madden of Madden and Finucane Solicitors said it was unfortunate that Finucane’s widow Geraldine had to resort to extensive litigation over three decades to protect her rights.

“We expect that the Secretary of State will now take the only legitimate course available to him and announce a full public judicial inquiry and that we will not need to resort to further court proceedings,” a statement said.

In February last year, the Supreme Court ruled that investigations into the fatal shooting of the Belfast solicitor have not been effective and fell short of international human rights standards.

Finucane’s son John last year said delay had replaced collusion as the British Government’s chief weapon against victims of violence.

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Former Prime Minister David Cameron previously decided not to hold a public inquiry into the case. A separate review commissioned by Cameron declared his killers colluded with the state in a “shocking” fashion.

Contains reporting by Press Association.

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