Stakeknife probe: Investigation team passes file to prosecutors

A police team investigating the Army’s most high-ranking IRA mole has prepared evidence files for prosecutors.

Operation Kenova is an independent police probe into the activities of Stakeknife, a state-run spy who reputedly ran the IRA “nutting squad”, which interrogated and murdered suspected informers.

In 2003, Stakeknife was widely named as west Belfast man Freddie Scappaticci, but he has always strongly denied it, and rejects claims that he was an IRA informer.

He was arrested and questioned by detectives as part of the three-year operation.

The police team, which is led by former Bedfordshire police chief John Boutcher, said it had prepared files for Northern Ireland’s Public Prosecution Service to assess.

PPS lawyers will be asked to make prosecutorial decisions on evidence files related to a number of offences, including murder, kidnap, torture, malfeasance in a public office and perverting the course of justice.

A statement from the investigation team said: “Those files are now in the process of being made available to the Public Prosecution Service for consideration.

“It would not be appropriate to go into further detail regarding that evidence, or the number of individuals involved, until that consideration has taken place.

“A full report of Operation Kenova’s findings will be published at the conclusion of all legal proceedings.”

It is understood the evidence files have not yet been passed to the PPS.

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