Properties worth around 44 million euros and thought to be linked to the IRA have been targeted in raids in Manchester in the north west of England.
The home and business of landlord Dermot Craven was also searched. Two-hundred-and-fifty properties have been identified. It’s thought to follow an inquiry into the business and financial affairs of Thomas Murphy, who iswidely considered to be the head of the IRA. The raids follow a High Court application for search and seizure warrants. It was awkward timing for Gerry Adams, who heads the IRA’s political ally Sinn Fein. He’s been meeting with Tony Blair to discuss the next moves in Northern Ireland following confirmation that the IRA has destroyed its arsenal of weapons. But first in to see Blair was hardline protestant loyalist Ian Paisley. “We asked for our rights. We are determined, with the Grace of God, to obtain these rights for the people of Northern Ireland,” Paisley said. Paisley presented the Prime Minister with a 60- page document detailing the conditions necessary before his party would enter into direct negitiations with Sinn Fein.