IRA supergrass Raymond Gilmour – found dead in his flat in England last week – was wanted by the PSNI for questioning.
The 56-year-old was to be arrested by the PSNI’s Terrorist Investigation Unit for withholding information about the alleged activities of Martin McGuinness.
TIU detectives were liaising with Kent police to have him brought in to a police station in Gillingham for questioning.
There Gilmour was to be formally arrested for withholding information about terrorist acts he claimed McGuinness was involved relating to his time in the IRA in Derry.
In his statement, Gilmour said he would reveal all about convicted IRA member McGuinness, including his alleged involvement in several murders.
Gilmour was found last week by his 18-year-old son from a previous marriage, his body decomposing where he died.
The discovery was made after he failed to respond to messages and calls from his family.
A post mortem is expected to be carried out next week to determine the exact cause of death.
But sources have told Belfast Daily that the outcome of the post mortem is being keenly waited on by his friends.
His personal security was the preserve of MI5 who are charged with looking after all informants and agents from Northern Ireland resettled in mainland Britain.
One source, who knew him well and was in regular contact with him, told us: “We know for a fact that he made a call to his MI5 contact in July.
“He threatened to expose his MI5 contact and then commit suicide.
“Clearly he felt under pressure from the PSNI to be interviewed. We knew he was feeling down for a quite while and his health wasn’t the greatest.
“We fear this pressure pushed him over the edge.
“At the end of the day, he was just another disposable Paddy.
“We really hope that his death was through natural causes and he didn’t go through with his threat to take his own life because of all this pressure he felt under.”
We can also reveal that he was in the process of suing the British Government.
“Ray was suing because he says the British Government reneged on his original deal when he was first resettled in England.
“He said they owed him £250,000.
“What we can’t get our head around is the fact that Ray ended up dying alone and in almost abject poverty.”
Gilmour had become a lonely figure, with his life spiralling into chronic alcoholism.
He was also suffering from post traumatic stress disorder.
His funeral is expected to take place next week.
Gilmour had been living in England under a new identity for the past 30 years after he gave evidence against fellow IRA and INLA members back in the early 1980s which became known as the ‘supergrass trials’.
His information rocked the IRA in Derry with so many members arrested on the foot of his word terrorist attacks ended in the city.
Gilmour was the only witness in the supergrass trial of 35 INLA and IRA suspects but it collapsed in 1984.
The then Lord Chief Justice Lord Lowry dismissed Gilmour’s evidence as being “unworthy of belief.”
Gilmour’s book ‘What Price Truth?’, a sequel to his first called ‘Dead Ground’, had become one of the top selling books on Amazon.
No sooner had it been published than it had to be taken off line because of the threat of legal action.
But after several months of legal arguments, the book went back online and its sales soared again.
In his interview two years ago, he said: “Martin McGuinness is now the Deputy First Minister in Northern Ireland but he appears to have forgotten all about his past in Derry.
“I mean, he was the man who taught me and republicans in Derry anti-interrogation techniques to prepare us for our arrest by the RUC and British Army.”
Gilmour said he was never asked to provide any information on McGuinness when it came to his “supergrass” trial.
He first joined the INLA when he was 17 working as a covert agent for RUC Special Branch.
After a fallout, he left the INLA and joined the IRA in 1980, passing back information on Provo players and operations.
However, two years later his cover was blown when police used information he supplied to recover a machine gun.
“I brought the INLA to their knees in Derry, I brought the IRA to their knees in Derry and I saved countless lives,” he said.
At the time of the interview, Gilmour said he felt ”abandoned by the police, MI5 and the State”.
He also feared the IRA would catch up with him one day.