Minister: press harassed my family over son's death
Thursday 23 September 1999
In a letter to the Press Complaints Commission he said that despite having "some experience of the press", he had been "genuinely shocked by their harassment" of his family. His son Hugh, 23, was found dead in his Glasgow flat by his mother two days ago.
Mr McCartney did not lodge a formal complaint with the commission but said: "My former wife ... has been persistently disturbed with ... demands from the press that she speak to them or supply them with a picture of my son. My elderly parents ... and my sister have been subject to the same treatment ... Surely any family is entitled to some space at this time?"
Hugh McCartney's death, say those who knew him, could have been prevented if the authorities had acted quicker. He was freed last week from prison in Glasgow, where he was serving a sentence for a dishonesty conviction. In jail he received methadone, a heroin substitute but by the time he was out he had been required to go "cold turkey".
A week later he was dead, having gone back to his heroin suppliers. Unaccustomed to the drug after several months, it would have been easy to overdose. He should not have been left without methadone - since last year, Scottish prisons are supposed to ensure continuity of care using it.
Mr McCartney had asked Glasgow City Council to move him out of his tenement block, where he moved two years ago to be near his mother. He said he felt suicidal and feared for his safety because of rowdy neighbours and the prevalence of drugs.
Experts highlighted the significance of his request, saying that it is vital to keep addicts out of drug ghettos to give them a chance to go clean. But the council's plans to transfer him were implemented too slowly. Yesterday workmen boarded up the flat.
Hugh McCartney was his father's only son, the third child after Karen, 30, and Yvonne, 27. Ian McCartney married Hugh's mother, Jean, in 1969 and the couple divorced in 1986.
- 1 Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
- 2 Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
- 3 The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
- 4 Now diplomacy has failed, boycotting Israel might be the only way we can protect the people of Gaza
- 5 Israel's propaganda machine is finally starting to misfire
Russell Brand accuses Sean Hannity of terrorism after aggressive Israel-Gaza debate
Pope Francis issues top 10 tips for happiness
Justin Bieber posts Instagram photo of a crying Orlando Bloom after Ibiza fight 'over Miranda Kerr'
Disney heiress Abigail disowns her share of family profits in West Bank company
Air Algerie AH5017 crash: Jet fell 30,000 feet in three minutes ‘due to violent storm’
The secret report that helps Israel hide facts
Land for gas: Merkel and Putin discussed secret deal could end Ukraine crisis
Woman and two children killed by mob in riots over 'blasphemous' Facebook post in Pakistan
Richard Dawkins tweets: 'Date rape is bad, stranger rape is worse'
Putin is 'thuggish, dishonest and reckless', says British ambassador to US
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – Britain as others see us
- < Previous
- Next >
£80000 - £90000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: I am current...
£65000 per annum + 15% Pension, Health, Travel & Bonus: Progressive Recruitmen...
£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Progressive Recruitment: SAP BW/BO CONSU...
competitive: Progressive Recruitment: I recruit for contract mechanical design...