UK

Jean McConville Case: Former IRA Leader Ivor Bell Charged In Connection With Abduction And Murder

22/03/2014 10:39 GMT | Updated 22/03/2014 11:59 GMT

A veteran republican charged in connection with the IRA murder more than 40 years ago of Belfast mother of 10 Jean McConville is due in court today.

Ivor Bell, 77, is expected to appear before magistrates in Belfast accused of aiding and abetting in the murder as well as membership of the IRA.

He was detained at his home in the Andersonstown district of west Belfast on Tuesday.

Mrs McConville, 37, was abducted by the IRA at her home at Divis Flats, Belfast in December 1972, shot dead and then secretly buried.

jean mcconville

Jean McConville (left) with three of her children before she vanished in 1972

The murder is one of the most notorious incidents of the Northern Ireland Troubles.

She was dragged away from her children by a IRA gang of up to 12 men and women after being accused her of passing

information to the British Army in Belfast at the time

An investigation later carried out by the Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman rejected the allegations.

She was shot in the back of the head and buried 50 miles from her home. The IRA did not admit her murder until 1999 when information was passed on to police in the Irish Republic.

She became one of the so-called Disappeared, and it was not until August 2003 that her remains were eventually found on Shelling Hill beach, Co Louth.

Nobody has ever been charged with her murder.

Bell was among of a delegation of republicans, which included Gerry Adams, now the Sinn Fein president, and Martin

McGuinness, the Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland, and a former IRA commander in Derry who were flown by the RAF to London to have ceasefire talks with British ministers in 1972. But the truce collapsed within days.