Britain: Coming Home To a Cell

Coming Home To a Cell

To the British government, Joe Doherty is simply a killer, but in the U.S. the Northern Irishman's fight to evade a life in prison has been a political cause celebre. Last week the escaped murderer's nine-year legal struggle came to an end as he was finally sent home.

In May 1980, a member of Britain's Special Air Service was killed in a shoot-out in Belfast with Doherty and three other I.R.A. members preparing an ambush. Charged with murder, Doherty escaped just as his trial was concluding. After his arrest in 1983 for entering the U.S. illegally, the British government sought his...