Four accused reject Máiria Cahill allegation

Máiria Cahill today.

Four people accused of covering up the rape of Máiria Cahill have issued a statement rejecting her claims.

The statement, issued by a law firm in Belfast, names four people who have been subject to what it calls an "unprecedented media onslaught".

It says all four people were investigated, but were acquitted when Ms Cahill decided not to give evidence which could be cross-examined in court.

It says those acquittals have now been "either ignored or devalued", and welcomes the news of an independent review by the Director for Public Prosecutions in the North.

The statement follows a meeting between Ms Cahill and Taoiseach Enda Kenny earlier, where Ms Cahill claimed the IRA had moved alleged sex abusers to the Republic to help them escape sanctions north of the border.

Press Statement from Peter Madden of Madden & Finucane

We represent Padraic Wilson, Seamus Finucane, Briege Wright and Maura McCrory.

This statement is released on behalf of my clients and in response to the unprecedented media onslaught that they have had to endure since the recent BBC Spotlight broadcast.

The cases against my clients were the subject of an intensive and lengthy high-ranking police investigation. They were then prosecuted by the office of the PPS, which was represented at all times in court by an experienced Senior and Junior counsel. The complainant Mairia Cahill was therefore afforded every available resource the State could offer.

There were protracted legal arguments relating to the procedures and evidence in these cases. The charge of IRA membership against Padraic Wilson was dismissed by the Court at the first opportunity as there was no evidence to support it at all.

The other charges were to be contested and ultimately Maria Cahill, the main prosecution witness, was to be cross-examined about her version of events which was not accepted by my clients.

She refused to allow this to take place and would not participate in the normal method of giving evidence at a trial, where the truth of her version of events would be tested by cross-examination.

My clients were therefore found not guilty of these offences.

In any normal society that would be the end of the matter and my clients should have been permitted to go back to their normal lives.

However, the rule of law has been subverted by the ongoing trial by the media against my clients.

Their acquittals have been either ignored or devalued.

We welcome the announcement by the DPP that there will be a review of the prosecution of these cases and we hope that the principles of openness and transparency stated by the DPP will extend to providing us with full disclosure during the process.

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