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Last Updated: Friday, 29 September 2006, 19:20 GMT 20:20 UK
Spy can give video link evidence
Mr Rupert was an informer for the Irish police special branch
Mr Rupert was an informer for the Irish police special branch
An American "super spy" who infiltrated the Real IRA is to be allowed to give video link evidence at the Omagh bomb compensation case.

High Court judge Mr Justice Morgan ruled that David Rupert can give his evidence from the United States.

Mr Rupert is currently under FBI protection.

The judge had previously been told there would be a severe risk to Mr Rupert's life if he was to give evidence in person.

It was claimed he was living at a secret address in the US for his own protection as his evidence would amount to a "devastating exposure" of the RIRA.

Lord Brennan, QC, leading the Omagh claimants legal team, said: "His photograph has been put on a website to try to obtain information about his whereabouts."

Mr Justice Morgan also announced that the case, brought by some relatives of the 29 people killed and the scores injured in the 1998 atrocity, will start on 16 April 2007.

The case is against alleged members of the Real IRA who carried out the bombing and five of the organisation's alleged figureheads.

The most prominent is Michael McKevitt, 56, from Blackrock, Co Louth, who is serving a 20 year sentence in Portlaoise after evidence given by double agent Rupert led to his conviction as leader of the RIRA.

The others are Liam Campbell and Colm Murphy, from Dundalk, County Louth, Seamus Daly, Castleblayney, County Monaghan, and Seamus McKenna, Silverbirdge, South Armagh.

The hearing is expected to last at least two months.

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