Revealed: British Army handlers 'let father-of-four informant be murdered by the IRA to save their prized double agent Stakeknife'
- Stakeknife revealed informant Joe Fenton was to be murdered by IRA as a traitor
- However army chiefs did not act as they did not want to compromise Stakeknife
- Mr Fenton was shot in 1989 soon after Stakeknife left house where he was held
- Revelations are part of new BBC Panorama investigation into IRA double agent
Army chiefs in Northern Ireland let a police informant be murdered by the IRA to protect another British spy considered a ‘golden egg’, it is claimed.
Estate agent Joe Fenton, 35, was secretly providing information about Republican terrorists to the Special Branch.
But when the Army’s IRA double agent Stakeknife – said to be Alfredo ‘Freddie’ Scappaticci – warned that the father of four was to be murdered as a traitor, military chiefs did nothing.
It is claimed they did not want to expose the high-ranking mole who was at the heart of the IRA’s internal security unit, known as the ‘nutting squad’, which interrogated and killed suspected spies.
Connections: Alfredo ‘Freddie’ Scappaticci, circled – alleged to be Stakeknife – at an IRA man’s funeral in 1988 where Gerry Adams, far right, carried the coffin
Mr Fenton was shot in 1989 soon after Stakeknife left the house where he was being held.
BBC1’s Panorama said Stakeknife told his own Army handlers that Mr Fenton would not survive, but no action appeared to have been taken to prevent the killing.
An independent investigation into more than 50 murders – at least 18 of which Panorama has linked to Stakeknife – is being led by Bedfordshire chief constable Jon Boutcher.
He told the programme: ‘We need to understand what was the rationale and decision-making of one person being allowed to die in order potentially, if this was the case, that another person can live.’
When the Army’s IRA double agent Stakeknife – said to be Alfredo ‘Freddie’ Scappaticci (pictured) – warned that Joe Fenton was to be murdered as a traitor, military chiefs did nothing
Kevin Winters, lawyer for the families of some of Stakeknife’s alleged victims, said of Mr Fenton’s murder: ‘If there was prior knowledge and [security forces] did nothing to intervene, that veers into the realms of criminal liability.’
Some killings by the ‘nutting squad’ were said not to have been properly investigated to keep Stakeknife’s cover, Panorama said.
The £35million Operation Kenova is investigating whether his fellow spies were sacrificed so he could continue as a mole because he was such a prized agent.
Panorama reporter John Ware is pictured in West Belfast
Northern Ireland director of public prosecutions Barra McGrory said a classified report detailing Stakeknife’s link to the murders made for ‘chilling reading’.
He added that there were ‘parallel processes’ – ‘a police investigation but all along there is an entirely secret dimension … that drives a coach and horses through the rule of law. It means the people who carried out these murders were not properly investigated or brought to justice’. Military intelligence sources have said Stakeknife was providing information that was saving many other lives.
Former head of Belfast Special Branch Ray White said: ‘It really is a moral maze … as to how you actually balance out.’
Mr Scappaticci was outed as playing a key role in the IRA for 25 years in 2003. In 2012 General Sir John Wilsey, Army commander in Northern Ireland from 1990 to 1993, said: ‘He was a golden egg …very important to the Army. We were terribly cagey about Fred.’
Bricklayer Mr Scappaticci has always strongly denied the allegation that he is Stakeknife.
- Panorama – The Spy In The IRA is on BBC1 at 10.45pm tonight.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4399478/Army-let-informant-killed-IRA-save-Stakeknife.html#ixzz4dxcJ6ttI
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