The nonsense of not knowing – the twists and turns of the on-the-runs

Every word that former PSNI chief constable Sir Hugh Orde speaks next Wednesday will be analysed and scrutinised. It will be his turn to give evidence to the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee – just days after retired Detective Chief Supt Norman Baxter alleged Downing Street interference to try to have two republican suspects released by police in 2007. The unfolding saga of the on-the-runs is a tale of twists and turns, but it is nonsense to suggest that no one knew anything until the headline collapse of the John Downey London case.