Freddie Scappaticci

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Northern Ireland.jpg This article is part of SpinWatch's Northern Ireland Portal.

Freddie Scappaticci is alleged to be a former high level informer in the Provisional IRA codenamed Stakeknife. He has been accused of involvement in up to 40 killings.[1]

Joseph Fenton

According to former BBC security correspondent Brian Rowan, Scappaticci was involved in the killing of informer Joseph Fenton:

So far, all so tragically predictable. But, says Rowan, the man who interrogated Fenton on behalf of the IRA was Freddie Scappaticci, the head of the IRA's internal security unit or 'nutting squad', who himself was later alleged to have been a long-time, high-level double-agent, codename 'Stakeknife', working for the RUC Special Branch and the Army's Force Research Unit. Rowan suggests that the fact that one agent working for the State was responsible for passing a death sentence on another agent (and many, many others besides) gives a glimpse of just how dirty the 'dirty war' really was.[2]

Stakeknife allegations

Journalist Martin Dillon has written of the 'Stakeknife' claims:

It could be argued that the 'Stakeknife' story was created to minimise the damaging effects of the Stevens investigations on the whole intelligence community. It shifted the media focus to the IRA - a partner in the peace process, with an equally violent role in the dirty war. One could reasonably assume 'Stakeknife' was intended to weaken the IRA at a time when it was refusing to decomission its arsenal. The unsubstantiated 'Stakeknife' revelations created deep suspicion in IRA ranks. some of its leading operatives considered breaking with the organisation and transferring their loyalties to an IRA offshoot.[3]

External Resources


  1. Stakeknife, British Irish Rights Watch, accessed 2 April 2009.
  2. Patrick Corrigan, Brian Rowan and the curious case of the 'dirty war', Belfast and Beyond blog, Amnesty International, 1 April 2009.
  3. Martin Dillon, The Trigger Men, Mainstream Publishing, 2004, p.276.