Published Wednesday, 28 August 2013
Kieran Doherty was killed by the Real IRA in 2010 (© Presseye)
Relatives of Kieran Doherty, who was killed in 2010 by the paramilitary gang he had been a part of, received a payout from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Appeals Panel.
The exact sum was not disclosed but it is understood to be in the thousands.
The news has been met with anger from unionist parties who have now called for a meeting with Mr Ford about the Compensation Services branch of his department.
DUP MEP Dianne Dodds said: "The Compensation Services branch in the Department of Justice has blurred the line between 'victim' and 'terrorist' by awarding compensation to the family of Real IRA man Kieran Doherty.
"I have represented many innocent victims who lost a partner through terrorism and now struggle, as single parents, to afford their children's university tuition yet they have a hard-fight to get any support. These families find it very difficult to understand how someone like Doherty can get compensation of the magnitude suggested."
The body of 31-year-old Kieran Doherty was left at the roadside after he was shot dead on the Braehead Road in Londonderry in 2010.
Speaking to UTV on behalf of the family, Kieran's uncle has defended the payment.
Vinnie Coyle said: "It wasn't the cash settlement, that didn't come into it - no-one's life should have a value.
"There is no price on the loss of a human life and there is no price on a mother's tears. No matter what part of our community we come from a loss is a loss and we need to start recognising that."
Arlene Foster, DUP MLA, said the debate is not about "how much a life is worth", or "a discussion about who receives the most money".
The Fermanagh, South Tyrone representative added: "This is a debate about why a man who was a terrorist qualifies for compensation from a scheme put in place for victims whilst many innocent victims of crime and terrorism are struggling to get adequate help and assistance."
© UTV News