Under the heading
"WHY WAS DEAD COP TAKEN OFF FRAUD PROBE?"
the SUNDAY WORLD published the following article on September 14th 1986 by journalist Jim Campbell:
A close friend of Mervyn Patterson, the detective found shot through the head on the foreshore of Belfast Lough in late July, claimed yesterday police chiefs won't tell her why he was taken off an RUC Fraud Squad investigation vital to her family.
She also says the police won't name the officers who ordered Patterson off the case into the handling of Freddy Andrew's legacy after he was made a ward of court.
Eileen Wright, his sister, has campaigned for two years to find out where much of her brother's money and property went from the car sales business he inherited. She claims a substantial amount of the money and property has vanished.
Eileen became friends with the dead policeman during his inquiries into the case and even though he had been removed from the Andrews case he was advising the family and was shortly to give evidence on their behalf if he hadn't been shot.
Mrs. Wright has made very serious allegations against a number of prominent people and although police investigating the bizarre death of Mervyn Patterson believe it was an elaborate suicide rigged to look like murder she believes he was killed because he knew too much.
As reported last month in SUNDAY WORLD Patterson had warned Chief Constable Sir Jack Hermon and this paper he would kill himself if that was the only way he could highlight alleged corruption within the RUC.
He claimed in documents sent to this paper and the RUC chief that corruption included the Andrews case.
He was taken off the case and replaced by other Fraud Squad detectives who have been probing the Andrews affair for over a year.
Mrs. Wright said the dead man told her he was taken off the case because he was making allegations.
She told this to the police when they questioned her recently about Mervyn Patterson's death. And she also bluntly told investigating officers she didn't believe her friend killed himself but was murdered because he knew too much.
Mervyn Patterson's arms were loosely tied behind his back and his feet were bound when he was found with a gunshot wound in the back of his head.
Although police remained tight-lipped for several days about the cause of death a police spokesman later said foul play was not suspected.
No gun was found near where the body was found only a few hundred yards from Det. Constable Patterson's home overlooking Belfast Lough. This has fuelled speculation by friends like Mrs. Wright there was something more sinister than suicide in the shooting.
Earlier this year Eileen Wright wrote to the Police Complaints Commission for Northern Ireland about the handling of RUC enquiries into her brother's estate and asked for the names of the officers who removed Det. Constable Patterson from the case and the reason he was taken off the inquiries.
She claims the replies from the Police Complaints Board are "feeble" because they have told her that since her complaint and queries concern general administration of the RUC, efficiency and procedures of the RUC and not just an individual officer it is beyond the scope of the board.
But the Board didn't tell her who had the scope to deal with her inquiries over who took Mervyn Patterson off the Andrews case.
"I think they are running out of anything sensible to say," she said yesterday.
Police investigating the Patterson death have examined again documents dealing with the Andrews inquiry.
And, according to Assistant Chief Constable (Crime) D. B. Mellor, papers of the RUC Fraud Squad are now with the Director of Public Prosecutions whose department will decide if anyone should be charged with fraud over the handling of the Freddy Andrews estate.