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BBC NI's Jeremy Mitchell
Local politicians fear UVF retaliation
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Sunday, 16 January, 2000, 18:54 GMT
Call on LVF to disband

The Jameson brothers blanked out this LVF tribute to murdered LVF leader Billy Wright Jamesons blanked out tribute to former LVF leader

The family of murdered Portadown man Richard Jameson have called on the Loyalist Volunteer Force to disband.

His four brothers spent Saturday painting over the lettering of the LVF murals in the County Armagh town where their brother was murdered at his home last Monday.

The murdered Portadown businessman was named as the commander of the rival loyalist paramilitary Ulster Volunteer Force in the area.
The Search for Peace
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But Richard Jameson's family deny this and blame the LVF for his murder because they say he stood up to drug dealers in the town.

His brother Bobby Jameson said: "We are taking these slogans off the walls because these people are no longer LVF, they are DVF - they are drug dealers.

"And that is what this whole thing is about, drug pushers and terrorising young people."

'Community support'

Bobby Jameson added that they had not received any hostile approaches as they painted out the LVF slogans and lettering on murals on gables ends in Portadown's loyalist Edgarstown estate.

Bobby Jameson: People of Portadown will no longer stand by Bobby Jameson: People of Portadown will no longer stand by
"The people came out and they embraced us. We can't do this on our own. We are doing it with the community and that is why we want every other town to do it as well," he said.

Mr Jameson added: "At the end of the day this is a token to show that the Portadown people in the community are not going to stand by and let these people ruin the town any longer.

"The people Portadown and other towns as well want the peace process to work and these drug people are taking it over and going under the name of loyalists."

Richard Jameson, 46, was shot several times at close range by a lone gunman as he drove up to his home on the Derryletiff Road, about five miles outside Portadown in County Armagh.

Richard Jameson's family have denied he was involved with the UVF Richard Jameson's family denied he was in the UVF
Thousands of people attended his funeral last Thursday.

Security sources said he was the leader of one of the largest loyalist paramilitary groupings, the Ulster Volunteer Force in Portadown.

Speaking the day after the murder, David Ervine of the Progressive Unionist Party, which has links to the UVF, said Mr Jameson had been murdered by "drug dealers masquerading as loyalists" because he had been a "bulwark in his community" against dealers.

Loyalist feud

The murder followed an ongoing bitter dispute between loyalist factions in the Portadown area.

Mr Jameson is believed to have been one of 12 people injured when tension between UVF and LVF supporters erupted into trouble at the end of a football match at Shamrock Park Social Club in Portadown, just after Christmas.

The hardline splinter group, the LVF was formed by Billy Wright after the UVF leadership stood his Portadown UVF unit down in 1996.

Billy Wright's breakaway UVF unit formed the LVF in 1996 Billy Wright's breakaway UVF unit formed the LVF in 1996
The UVF move came after the unsanctioned killing of Catholic taxi driver Michael McGoldrick which breached the ceasefire announced by the Combined Loyalist Military Command in 1994.

Wright was shot in the Maze prison by the republican paramilitary splinter group, the Irish National Liberation Army in December 1997 and Mark Fulton the man named by security sources as the LVF's current leader is serving a four year sentence for firearms offences in Maghaberry prison.

Mark Fulton telephoned a Belfast newsroom two days after Mr Jameson's murder by mobile phone to deny LVF involvement in the murder.

Although the UVF is much larger province-wide than the LVF, in the Portadown area the UVF is reported to have been trying to regain lost ground with a recent recruitment drive.

Local Democratic Unionist Party Assemblyman Paul Berry told the BBC after the murder that Mr Jameson had tried to calm the feud situation between the two groups in Portadown.

Mr Berry said: "He tried to keep a lid on the whole thing and to intervene in this problem, but sadly he has become a victim of this problem."

The defacing of the LVF's murals is unlikely to defuse tension in Portadown. Some attempts had been made to restore some of the LVF slogans overnight on Saturday.

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See also:
11 Jan 00 |  Northern Ireland
Murder as loyalist feud boils over
10 Jan 00 |  Northern Ireland
Police hunt loyalist's killer
13 Jan 00 |  Northern Ireland
'No revenge' plea as UVF man buried
28 Dec 99 |  Northern Ireland
Loyalist tension blamed for violence

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