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Arms Smuggling

Volume 894: debated on Thursday 26 June 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent evidence he has received of arms and money from the United States and Canada coming into Northern Ireland for illegal use; and if he will make a statement about these matters.

A proportion of the illegally-held arms recovered by the security forces in Northern Ireland are clearly identifiable as originating in the United States. At least 20 persons have been convicted in the United States for offences connected with gun-running to Ireland, and in Canada four were successfully prosecuted earlier this month. All these had Republican connections. In December and January three men were convicted at Winchester and two in Toronto, all with Loyalist connections, on charges relating to the smuggling of arms for Northern Ireland from Canada.As regards the transfer of money, I would refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave earlier today to the Questions from the hon. Members for Kingston-upon-Thames (Mr. Lamont) and Surbiton (Sir N. Fisher) and the hon. and learned Member for Blackpool, North (Mr. Miscampbell).