No Court Martial For Royal Navy Whistleblower


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May 17, 2014
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"The Royal Navy submariner who went on the run after publishing claims about the safety of the UK's nuclear deterrent and Trident fleet is not to face a court martial. Able Seaman William McNeilly has instead been discharged from the Armed Forces with his "services no longer required".

McNeilly, who had served as an Engineering Technician on a patrol of HMS Victorious, will face no further charges relating to his conduct. The 25-year-old failed to return from leave and fled to Europe after publishing online an 18 page dossier containing allegations about safety and security breaches. The engineer claimed he'd repeatedly raised his concerns with his superiors but they'd been dismissed.

His actions were championed by anti-nuclear campaigners however the Ministry of Defence said his claims were "factually incorrect or the result of mis- or partial understanding".

Following a investigation the Defence Secretary Michael Fallon told MPs that "neither the operational effectiveness of our continuous at sea deterrent nor the safety of our submariners or members of the public have been compromised".

Mr McNeilly was detained by military police when he flew back into Edinburgh last month but his breaches were subsequently deemed to have not broken the Official Secrets Act.
Among the submariner's claims were accusations that there had been fires in missile compartments, alarms muted so people could ignore them, and of security breaches at the Faslane naval base where the Trident submarine fleet is based.

Naval regulations allow for a discharge when a "sailor's views or actions are deemed incompatible with service life."

According to an MOD spokeswoman "We can confirm the AB McNeilly has left the Naval Service, the details of which are a matter for the individual and his employer.

"Throughout the process Able Seaman was still being afforded the duty of care that we give all our personnel, as was his family.""