'Mad Dog' Adair's son held after drugs raids

Ian Herbert,North
Wednesday 17 December 2003 01:00

The son of Northern Ireland paramilitary Johnny 'Mad Dog' Adair was arrested yesterday during a series of drug raids in the Bolton area of Greater Manchester, where he and his family have been seeking refuge from loyalist in-fighting.

Jonathan Adair, 19, was arrested on suspicion of drugs offences along with a 22-year-old man at a hotel on the M61 in Anderton, Cheshire. Police also arrested a 32-year-old woman; a 13-year-old boy; an 18-year-old girl and a 40-year-old man after raids on five houses.

Five imitation handguns, including a fake M-16 assault rifle and four fake handguns, were also seized during the raids. Greater Manchester Police carried out the operations just after 6am as part of a three-month investigation codenamed Operation Margate into alleged drug dealing by associates of Ulster Freedom Fighters (UFF) leader Mr Adair, who lives in the area.

The Adairs moved to Greater Manchester in search of refuge in March, following the execution of Ulster Defence Association (UDA) commander John Gregg. Some 50 members of Mr Adair's notorious C Company of the UFF, the UDA's killing squad, have joined them in the north east of England. In April, five shots were fired at Mr Adair's wife Gina Adair's house in Horwich, Greater Manchester. A UDA faction later admitted responsibility.