17/10/2008

'UVF' Weapons Cache Seized In Ballysillan

An investigation into a 'sudden death' in north Belfast has uncovered more than expected.

More than 70 firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition have been recovered from a house in a loyalist area of Belfast.

Police made the discovery after the death of a man in Belfast's Ballysillan area at the weekend. A search of his house uncovered the weapons.

A spokeswoman for the PSNI said: "Police have uncovered a substantial amount of guns from a house in north Belfast.

"The discovery was made as part of an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the sudden death of a man in the north of the city at the weekend.

"During follow up searches of the man's house more than 70 suspected firearms and thousands of rounds of ammunition were discovered. They have all now been removed for examination."

Police said a further number of firearms - believed to be a further 10 - were also seized from a lock-up in the Belfast area.
News Image
The man's death is not thought to be suspicious and police are continuing with their investigation.

Reports this morning suggest the weapons are from a UVF cache although the BBC Northern Ireland Security Correspondent, Vincent Kearney, has said that UVF sources could "not confirm the weapons belonged to the organisation".

However, Billy Hutchinson, a member of the PUP who has represented the UVF at meetings aimed at decommissioning weapons, has said he hoped to make "a full statement, later".

Meanwhile, Sinn Féin Junior Minister and MLA for North Belfast has welcomed the find.

"Sinn Fein welcomes the finding of this huge amount of guns and ammunition. These guns, which belonged to an organisation that was responsible for countless sectarian killings in north Belfast and further afield, have now been taken of the streets.

"The obvious question that nationalists across north Belfast will be asking what the UVF were doing with guns and a large amount of ammunition in the city anyway, 14 years after the UVF declared a ceasefire?"

(BMcC)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

30 November 2021
Two Men Found Dead At A House In Coleraine
Two men have been found dead at a house in Coleraine, the PSNI have reported. Police and emergency services were called to a house in Elms Park in Ballysally just before 2.40pm on Monday 29 November.
14 January 2022
'Collusive Behaviours' Found In Investigation Into UDA Murders
A Police Ombudsman report into paramilitary attacks by the UDA/UFF between 1989 and 1993 has found identified "collusive behaviours and raised significant concerns about police conduct". The Ombudsman investigated the RUC's handling of paramilitary attacks by the UDA/UFF, which resulted in 19 murders and multiple attempted murders.
13 January 2022
Appeal For Information On Serious Assault In Co Tyrone
The PSNI have issued an appeal for information following a serious assault in Sion Mills, Co Tyrone. Three men are being treated in hospital following an incident on Main Street, which occurred at around 8.45am on Wednesday, 12 January.
12 January 2022
PSNI Appeal For Information On Newtownabbey Hit-And-Run
The PSNI have issued an appeal for information on a hit-and-run incident in Newtownabbey. At about 5.30pm on Tuesday 11 January, a young cyclist was struck by a vehicle as travelled across a zebra crossing at Cloughfern roundabout on O'Neill Road.
08 December 2021
Campaign To Address Emergency Dept Missing Person Reports
The PSNI and Health & Social Care Board (HSCB) have launched a joint campaign to reduce the number of patients being reported missing from Emergency Departments (ED). The awareness campaign aims to stop patients from leaving the ED without telling a member of ED staff. The initiative will run across all emergency departments.