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RFK daughter marries IRA figure

BOSTON -- Mary Courtney Kennedy, a daughter of the late Robert F. Kennedy, has married Paul Michael Hill, an Irish Republican Army figure who was wrongfully jailed for 15 years for bombing pubs frequented by British soldiers.

The announcement was made in Boston Thursday by the Kennedy family.

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Kennedy, 37, is the niece of the U.S. ambassador to Ireland, Jean Kennedy Smith. Hill, 38, is a Belfast native who is free on bail pending an appeal of his conviction in the 1974 killing of a British soldier.

The two were wed Saturday aboard the yacht Varmar VE in the Aegean Sea by the ship's owner and captain, Vardis Vardinoyannis.

Courtney's brother, Michael Kennedy, said the two had been engaged but had not set a date.

'I think when they got over there, they decided that was the best opportunity,' he said. Her mother, Ethel, flew over for the ceremonies.

Courtney Kennedy is the fifth of Robert and Ethel's 11 children. She is the U.N. ambassador for Eastern Europe on the AIDS Foundation.

She was previously married to cable television sports executive Jeff Rhue.

Hill was one of the Guildford Four. He served 15 years in prison after being wrongfully convicted in a fatal IRA bombing at a Guildford pub frequented by British soldiers.

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The four were later exonerated by a judge who ruled that police falsified evidence against Hill and three others.

Hill wrote a book about his ordeal, 'Stolen Years.'

He is free pending appeal of his conviction in the 1974 death of Brian Shaw, a former British soldier. Hill said he confessed to that killing because police threatened to press a murder charge against his pregnant girlfriend and threatened to harm his family.

The newlyweds were introduced in 1990 by her brother, Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy 11, D-Mass.

They are honeymooning in Ireland.

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