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June 25 , 2009

Into the Dark: 30 Years in the Royal Ulster Constabulary during the Troubles


Johnston Brown was hailed by Martin Dillon as "the superb investigator who was central to bringing ‘Mad Dog’ Adair to justice." According to Dillon," . . . the day [Brown] publishes the story of life in the RUC, from the troubled 1970s to the 1990s, a veil will be lifted from the undercover war . . .. ". Into the Dark is that story. Johnston Brown served in the RUC for nearly 30 years. Recruited into the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) only two years into his service, he quickly established himself as a detective of outstanding ability. He was to lead the investigation into the murder of solicitor Pat Finucane, and it was he who was responsible for finally bringing Johnny Adair to book. Brown was, however, quickly to discover that he was up against another even more deadly enemy than the criminals he was pursuing: those sinister elements of RUC Special Branch who for reasons of their own were determined to thwart his success. Brown found to his cost that they would stop at nothing to do so . . . Into the Dark offers a gripping insight into life in the RUC: the day-to-day reality of policing the streets of West Belfast during the dark days of the PIRA hunger strike, and what it was like to be a detective stationed in the "killing fields" of North Belfast during the 80s. The narrative lays bare some of the key terrorist personalities, as well as those operating within the Special Branch to pervert the course of justice as a means of asserting internal control. The book is written in very clear and straightforward language and tells the story of the corruption at the heart of the RUC Special Branch during the recent troubles. Brown spent 30 years in the force, mostly as a detective in the CID branch and was responsible for bring some very important murderers to justice. His brave, honest and modest personality shines through every page.

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