Police release two men held over Jean McConville murder

Widow was one of Disappeared abducted from Belfast in 1972

An undated handout photo of Jean McConville (left) with three of her 10 children. Photograph: PA Wire

An undated handout photo of Jean McConville (left) with three of her 10 children. Photograph: PA Wire

 

Two men arrested by police in Northern Ireland in connection with the abduction and murder of Jean McConville in 1972 have been released.

A 63-year-old man was arrested in the Forkhill area of south Armagh while a 64-year-old man was arrested in Co Antrim. They were questioned at Antrim police station.

The men were released “unconditionally” this afternoon, the PSNI said.

The total number of people arrested and questioned in connection with the investigation into the death of Ms McConville is 11, Detective Inspector Neil McGuinness of the PSNI said.

Ms McConville was one of the Disappeared, people who were abducted and murdered and secretly buried by republican paramilitaries, mainly by the IRA.

Her body was found on Shelling Hill beach in 2003.

She was a widow and the circumstances and the nature of her killing, which her children abandoned and subsequently taken into care, made her murder one of the most notorious of the Troubles.

The IRA claimed she had been assisting the British army while her family said she was taken away by an IRA gang because she had comforted an injured British soldier shot close to her flat in Divis in west Belfast.

A Police Ombudsman investigation in 2006 found no evidence to support the IRA claim that she allowed the British army place a transmitter in her home.