Thousands expected at UDA funeral

Thousands of loyalists were expected to attend today’s funeral of murdered UDA leader John Gregg.

Thousands of loyalists were expected to attend today’s funeral of murdered UDA leader John Gregg.

Loyalist sources are claiming it will be the biggest paramilitary show of strength since the funeral of LVF leader Billy Wright, five years ago.

The UDA leadership has threatened massive retaliation for Saturday night’s double murder in the docks area of Belfast.

They have warned members of Johnny Adair’s “C” Company to leave his unit by midnight tonight or face the consequences.

Adair’s followers have been blamed for the murder of Gregg and fellow UDA member Robert Carson as they returned home from a Glasgow Rangers match on Saturday night.

As the bitter feud continued, Adair’s "C" Company vowed to meet any attacks with “a measured military response“.

“While "C" Company will continue to seek a resolution to the present impasse and difficulties we are determined and resolute in ensuring the safety of our officers and members,” it added.

One senior loyalist claimed that Adair and his close associate John White were “finished“.

“Members of "C" Company are walking away in droves. There is no doubt these people are finished. Adair doesn’t have the support of any other organisation,” he added.

Robert Carson, a 33-year-old father of two, was buried yesterday after a funeral service at his family home.

Members of the UDA’s leadership were among thousands of loyalists who turned out for the funeral in the Rathcoole Estate.

These included the four remaining members of the UDA inner council, Jim Gray (East Belfast), Billy McFarlane (North Antrim and Derry), Jackie McDonald (South Belfast) and Andre Shoukri (North Belfast).

Among those following the coffin was “Mo” Courtney, a former close ally of Adair. Courtney left the unit last week after claiming they were trying to kill him.

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