Statement by TUV leader Jim Allister:
“The revelation that the family of a convicted criminal were paid “substantial” compensation after he was murdered by former associates in the Real IRA shows that Criminal Injury Compensation needs to be reviewed urgently.
“This is an issue which falls within the remit of the Justice Minister, David Ford, and it is something which I intend to press him on.
“It is typical of the topsy turvy state of Northern Ireland that the families of innocent victims of terrorists should receive pittance in compensation while the families of terrorists receive large pay-outs. Victims see convicted terrorists elevated to the highest offices in the land and, until recently, criminals rewarded for their crimes by being gifted posts as Special Advisers.
“There are many unanswered questions relating to this criminal injury compensation, which would not have arisen if the former provision for a public hearing in front of a judge had not been dispensed with in financially driven amendments to the law. How was dependency established in this case? Had the deceased a convincing work record and contribution record to his mother and grandmother, bearing in mind he is said to have had a partner? Was she too compensated? What deduction, if any, was made for the deceased’s character, criminal record and conduct?”