Department of Homeland Security Demands Surrender Of Irish Businessman For Deportation

A press release from the supporters of Malachy McAllister who is facing deportation from the USA.

On the eve of the 18th anniversary of the historic Good Friday Agreement of 1998, brokered by the United States, which brought an end to decades of violent conflict in Northern Ireland, the period known as “the Troubles” has raised yet another casualty.

Malachy McAllister, a stonemason and restaurateur who has been resident in Rutherford, NJ for 20 years, fled Belfast in 1998 with his young family following a vicious gun attack on his home and children by a Loyalist terror gang, which was to propel him through the asylum systems in Canada and the United States for the next 15 years. 

When his legal options became exhausted before a Federal Court of Appeals in 2006, Judge Maryanne Trump-Barry made a plaintive call from the bench for relief from the executive, opining that: “I refuse to believe that "Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free ..." is now an empty entreaty. But if it is, shame on us.” Judge Trump-Barry concluded:

…we cannot be the country we should be if, because of the tragic events of September 11th, we knee-jerk remove decent men and women merely because they may have erred at one point in their lives. We should look a little closer; we should care a little more. I would ask — no, I would implore — the Attorney General to exercise his discretion and permit this deserving family to stay.

The Department of Homeland Security, responding to these sentiments and similar pleas from a bi-partisan group of Congressional leaders, allowed Mr. McAllister and his family to remain under its “prosecutorial discretion” policy for low-priority immigrants. On Thursday, March 24, 2016, Mr. McAllister’s safety net was swiftly and unexpectedly withdrawn.

Mr. McAllister stated:

I am shocked and deeply saddened that, after 20 years, I am to be ripped from my family, my infant son, my business and community to a country I had to flee from nearly 30 years ago to bring my young family to safety.

Mr. McAllister has developed deep ties to the Irish-American community in the Tri-State area, and enjoys support from many Irish American groups in relation to his campaign to remain. Elected Chairman of the United Irish Counties organization’s prestigious dinner in 2009, he had the honor of introducing US Special Peace Envoy to Northern Ireland, Senator George Mitchell. He was aide to the Grand Marshall of the 2010 New York St. Patrick’s Day Parade, namely, New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.

Recently, Mr. McAllister was made aware of information which confirmed his reasons for fleeing his home country. Recently declassified military intelligence documents disclosed by Sir Desmond de Silva following his review of collusion between security forces and Loyalist terrorists in Northern Ireland in the murder of human rights lawyer, Patrick Finucane, reveals that Mr. McAllister had been targeted for assassination by Loyalist terrorists with the knowledge and support of the security services in Northern Ireland. 

Mr. McAllister, who tragically lost his wife Bernadette during his fight to remain, continued:

My only desire for my family was to stake a piece of ground on the Eastern seaboard of the United States which we can finally call home. The past should remain where we left it.


  1. Wait, Pat Finucane is being renamed 'a human rights lawyer'??

    Fuck me laughing!! Let's be honest here, he was a very good lawyer at getting people off the hook and yes he was murdered in barbaric circumstances by evil bastards but quit with the revisionist holier than thou attempts.

    Human Rights lawyer my arse, this smacks of another being elevated to martyrdom by republicans.

  2. Steve,

    he has not been renamed as a human rights lawyer but has from his death been described as one. The real revisionism would lie in trying to strip that away from descriptions of him.

    Is a human rights lawyer a good way to describe him but not other defence lawyers? It would depend on whether he was involved in human rights lobbying/campaigning inter alia outside of representing defendants in court, then it would fit.

    According to Justin O'Brien's book, Killing Finucane: “He had successfully challenged the British government at the European Court of Human Rights over its incarceration policies in the mid-1970s. He had spearheaded the use of compensation claims in cases involving allegations of mistreatment and torture within interrogation centres. He was also instrumental in galvanising opposition to the provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act, which was facing a barrage of international criticism from human rights organisations.

    Seems pretty much what a human rights lawyer would do.

  3. Steve

    Because a lawyer happens to be involved in a case that was brought to the ECtHR or represents a client complaining about police misconduct does not make them a 'human rights lawyer' though it is common place up north to call any legal ass a human rights lawyer because it makes them into something they are not.

    In PF's case he did earn it because he was consistent and perhaps pionered human righst issues in Ireland; at real rsik to his life he represented scores of cases involving physical brutality, unlawful arrests and he was among a small number of lawyers throughout the then EEC(EU) who were making use of the 1950's European Human Rights Convention. It was not until the 1970's that among these few lawyers that individuals could bring their case to the ECtHR when all other avenues had been exhausted. Before then it had been thought that only states could take action; hence Ireland v UK 1979 torture case. By 1980's applications to the ECtHR started to become as common place as we now have come to as an integral part of the legal process.

    And as a result of these developments Ulster and Queens University law schools now provide dedicated human rights law modules only within the last 20 years.

  4. Steve
    You are mistaken. PF was very successful and cared very much for the human rights of his clients. As for the human rights of the victims of his nearest and dearest: not so much.

  5. Peter,

    a churlish comment which sounds resentful of the fact that he has been successfully described as a human rights lawyer. No person or lawyer can champion every case or individual.

    In pushing human rights is there the slightest evidence to suggest he pushed them in the hope that only some humans would benefit and not others? You don't appear to speak out too often in support of the rights of the UDR's many victims but it would be most churlish of me to presume you don't think they should have no rights or that you think they are less worthy of them.

  6. AM

    OK fair enough, but that is a huge one for the PUL community to swallow. PF is still viewed as being a 'Provo staff lawyer' due to all of his brothers being provos, and his repeated success at getting some nasty characters off the hook.

    If he had just focused on the Human Rights stuff it would be easier to believe.

  7. Steve,

    "still viewed" amounts to nothing in terms of what is or what is not.

    He is to be deemed guilty because he had brothers?

    He is to be deemed guilty because he won cases?

    Have you not considered tackling the prejudice behind such a verdict rather than deferring to it?

    He was the target of British state terrorism.

  8. AM

    -agreed, it was an irrelevant observation that I should retract

    -that every single one of his brothers were/are Provisionals, and one of those was even named by Maria Cahill as threatening her with 'letting loose'her rapist, would make the average lay person wonder if by some miracle PF really was unsullied by involvement with the RM other than a purely client/solicitor arrangement. Or at the very least was PF a 'tactical asset' of the RM?

    -in the eyes of people with murderous extrajudicial intentions, unfortunately yes

    - a fair point, the prejudice is ingrained deep but should be challenged even within myself

    - the point is inarguable, but are you now trusting all testimony from British state security force assets?

  9. Steve,

    how many brothers did he have? On what basis can it be said that every single one of them was a Provo? I don't believe that to be accurate even though three were.

    The average lay person choosing to believe the world is flat is a prejudice rather than fact based belief. Would you want to be judged on the actions of one of your siblings?

    Testimony from all quarters is to be weighed rather than sponged up.

    Why this seeming inexorable need to taint a slain lawyer? Why not just state he was targeted by collusion because he was a high profile lawyer that elements within the state and loyalists disapproved of?

  10. It's more the 'human rights' lawyer that irks AM, he no doubt kept people who murdered out of gaol. While I appreciate (now) that he won a case, it still sticks in the craw.

    A bit hypocritical to bandy about human rights when he kept those who murdered out of jail.

    And yes he was murdered collusion, that's not my point, and the question I asked was that given the evidence of that collusion came from the British state apparatus as well, are you or others now accepting that evidence at face value?

  11. Steve,

    the case for collusion was made long before the British state felt compelled to reveal anything. Evidence was extracted from the state who still to this day have been rowing back from truth recovery.

    Should we accept evidence of collusion if offered by the state? If compelling and in the absence of any compelling alternative explanation, yes. The obvious question is why would it plead guilty to what it was not guilty of?

    Keeping guilty people out of jail in no way implies any identification between lawyer and the actions of the guilty. The lawyer protects the human rights of all from the arbitrary power of the state by ensuring that people have rights against the state.

    There is no hypocrisy involved in being a human rights lawyer and offering the best legal defence possible to a defendant against a state that all too often demonstrated a willingness to imprison and keep in prison for many years people it knew to be innocent. There is consistency between defending the rights of accused people and a broader advocacy of human rights.

    If Michael Mansfield was to represent in court someone like the RUC Special Branch who colluded in the killing of Pat Finucane would he be any less a human rights lawyer? Or should only people who don't support human rights be allowed to represent these characters?

    You seem all over the place on this one.

  12. AM

    Actually, I have not made my mind up either way on this one, best to keep an open mind I suppose. The collusion and the horrible nature of his murder sicken me, but neither was he targeted for no reason, and I doubt he was targeted for being a 'human rights lawyer'.

  13. If people were targeted for no reason other than being Catholic, it is no great challenge to think he was targeted because he was a human rights lawyer.

    I think you have tried to reframe your argument which was initially not a response to a claim by anyone that he was targeted because he was a human rights lawyer, but was a response to a description of him as a human rights lawyer.

    He might have been targeted because he was a prominent high profile figure in the nationalist community; or because he upset the Security services due to his legal defence work frustrating their attempts to imprison people.

    Your continued effort to taint him with the whiff of something might reveal a more malign agenda on your own part than his. You have shown him to be culpable of noting and yourself culpable of trying to blacken him.

    In the course of a blog comments exchange that amounts to very little other than he emerges more blameless than you. And that still provides no possible basis for anyone targeting you ... or him.

  14. Anthony,

    The description of Pat Finucane as a Human Rights Lawyer as opposed to a solicitor, it appears to me has a political context. Dessie Boal's career of advocacy far exceeds that of Finucane yet never once have I read or heard of Boal being described in that vain. Dessie was perhaps responsible for the acquittals of more republican defendants than Pat yet was not targeted by the state.

  15. Robert,

    doubtless, some employ the tag for politically derivative purposes. Equally, others deny it for the same.

    I tend not to use the term as a pre-fix for Pat or other lawyers in the North. But as Pat was involved in pushing human rights issues outside of the defendants he represented, the term Human Rights lawyer is apt. If Dessie Boal did likewise, rather than function as a defence attorney, and did not advocate measures that were injurious of human rights, he fully merits the description. Jeff Dudgeon for example is a unionist political activist who has done more for human rights than many political activists in the nationalist community. Was he to be described as a human rights activist, fine by me.

    That Dessie was not targeted for assassination is perhaps more symptomatic of the sectarian mindset of those who targeted him than it is inference of culpability on the part of Pat.

    Can we find anything in official reports or elsewhere which show Pat was targeted for anything other than his legal and/or human rights advocacy?

    Suggestions to the contrary seem based on nothing of substance. All whispers, innuendo and smear.

    Given the sheer amount of montages and security service intelligence reports that have been leaked have you seen one that states Pat was doing something that would make him a suspect?

    Special Branch briefing loyalist assassins, in evidential terms, amounts to nothing.

  16. AM

    As I admitted above, yes I probably am shaped by my own prejudices, but unfortunately that is how Finucane was viewed in the community I was brought up in. Curiously, now I think back to it, the fact that he was catholic never even entered into any conversations I remember about it at the time. You may laugh but it's true.

    All of us have biases, for some reason Finucane is a sore one for both sides. Probably more so than other single murder I can think of.

    But you are right,I should work on my preconceived prejudices in light of evidence.

  17. Steve,

    the fact that he was a Catholic didn't have to come up because labelling him a Provo lawyer was a better rationale for not having to address the manner of his death. And it was mirrored within the nationalist community when innocent Protestants were killed: a they weren't killed for nothing type perspective. If we strip people of their innocence and ascribe to them a culpability role it makes it easier to justify killing them. It is the way with war.

  18. Um...anyone concerned about Malachy McAllister and his family? I care deeply about Pat Finucane and his legacy, but the here and now is about the McAllister family.

  19. Too true AM, too true.

    Apologies for any offence.

  20. Steve,

    no offence caused. Just a difference of opinion, rationally argued out.

  21. Anyone else think it's a bit of a coincidence that this arises now. 99% sure that the Judge referred to has a brother who's running for President on an anti-immigration ticket! just a thought .