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Last Updated: Monday, 18 August, 2003, 12:59 GMT 13:59 UK
Scappaticci loses legal bid
Freddie Scappaticci
Freddie Scappaticci applied for a judicial review

The west Belfast man who denies being a British Army spy inside the IRA has lost a judicial review he brought in a bid to clear his name.

Freddie Scappaticci, 59, wanted the High Court in Belfast to order the Northern Ireland security minister to make a public statement on the allegation that he was the spy codenamed 'Stakeknife'.

He said his life had been put in danger since the allegations were made in newspaper articles and on television and radio in May.

He sought the judicial review in a bid to get Security Minister Jane Kennedy to confirm he had not been a British agent.

Application dismissed

Ms Kennedy had consistently refused to make any such statement, saying the government did not comment on intelligence matters including the naming of agents.

Mr Scappaticci's lawyers invoked the European Convention on Human Rights and he was given leave for a judicial review in the High Court.

On Monday, Lord Chief Justice, Lord Carswell said he had considered various matters including, the threat to Mr Scappaticci's' life.

However, he dismissed the application to overturn Ms Kennedy's decision.

He said to deny one person as an agent could place the life of another in danger.

In other words, a refusal to comment in the case of another suspected agent, could be interpreted as significant.

Mr Scappaticci was not in court for the hearing.

Speaking outside the court, his solicitor Michael Flannigan said Mr Scappaticci was disappointed with the outcome.

"He has been under enormous pressure during the past three months. His life has effectively been turned upside down," he said.

He said Mr Scappaticci's priority was to get back to a situation where he could live safely at home.

The BBC's Mark Simpson
"According to his legal team the fight to clear his name goes on"

Scappaticci judgement reserved
08 Aug 03  |  Northern Ireland
Scappaticci wins legal bid
17 Jun 03  |  Northern Ireland


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