Former UVF killer ordered back to jail

Michael McHugh,Press Association
Sunday 23 October 2011 06:41

A former Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) supergrass and killer has been ordered to return to prison by the Government.

James Crockard, 56, who has been living in Spain, was jailed in 1983 for the murder of two Catholics from west Belfast.

He was freed under licence after serving eight years of his life sentences for the killing of Carl McParland and Gabriel Wiggins. But the Government now fears he presents an increased risk to members of the public.

A Northern Ireland Office (NIO) spokesman said: "Minister of State Paul Goggins, acting on behalf of the Secretary of State, has revoked the life licence of James Graham Crockard and recalled him to prison on his life sentences.

"It is with regard to concerns of him having breached the conditions of his licence and presenting an increased risk of harm to the public."

Crockard testified against 29 loyalists charged with more than 90 UVF-linked offences in the 1980s.

Mr Wiggins, 56, a father of 14 children, was shot in September 1979 when he answered a knock at the front door of his home in the Springfield Road area of west Belfast.

Carl McParland, 21, was killed by gunmen who entered his sister's home at Leoville Street in the Clonard area of west Belfast in April 1980.