Dead Man Running

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Martin McGartland

Martin McGartland (born 30 January 1970) is a former special branch / MI5 secret agent who infiltrated the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) in Belfast.     

After being exposed as an agent in 1991 he was kidnapped by the IRA but escaped from the three armed terrorists by jumping out of a window.  

He was then resettled in England under a new identity of Martin Ashe.  His inew dentity was exposed by Northumbria Police  and Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) after they took him to court on a minor motoring charge. 

The court case resulted in his birth identity (as well as his secret address) becoming publicly known.  

The IRA tracked Martin down and shot him six times as he sat in his car outside his home in England.   He recovered from the injuries.

He has written two books about his life, Fifty Dead Men Walking: The Terrifying True Story of a Secret Agent Inside the IRA and Dead Man Running.

The film, Fifty Dead Men walking, is 'loosely based 'on the book of the same name,  Jim Sturgess  plays Martin and Sir Ben Kingsley (as Fergus) plays  his special branch handler in the film.  It also stars Rose McGowan (Charmed) who plays IRA woman 'Grace'. 

Martin has stated publicly that;, "The film is as near to the truth as Earth is to Pluto."

Martin was given another new identity as a result of the shooting.  To this day he continues to live in hiding.  Special branch and MI5 have abandoned him.  He said publicly;  "MI5  WILL forget about you [Agents] once you out live your usefulness. - once you pass your sell-by-date.  There is no-one more ruthless than MI5 once an agent has passed his / her sell-by-date."