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The Newry Democrat, 14 February 2006:

McDowell's 'slap in face' for Ludlows

The late Seamus Ludlow, murdered 2 May 1976.The family of  murdered Dundalk man Seamus Ludlow has accused Irish Justice Minister, Michael McDowell of "slapping them in the face" after he warned against a public inquiry into the 1976 murder.

Mr McDowell apologised last week to the Ludlow family for the handling of the Gardai investigation into Mr Ludlow's murder but counselled against a full public inquiry.

Michael Donegan, a nephew of Mr Ludlow, said: "Michael McDowell gave us an apology for the way the case had been handled but then he slapped us all in the face by recommending there shouldn't be a public inquiry into Seamus' death."

Mr Donegan said the reason given for not pursuing an inquiry was because both DPPs in the North and South believed there was not enough evidence for prosecutions - a claim he dismissed.

"There's no logic to that," he added. "We are not looking for prosecutions.

"A public inquiry is all about getting answers as to why the Gardai and the RUC didn't act on intelligence they had at the time.

"We want to know about the cover-up and collusion in this whole case. That is the reason we seek a public inquiry, not to pursue prosecutions.

"We have also made several aplications to meet with Bertie Ahern about this but have never received a reply, yet he is more than happy to meet with the father of loyalist killer Billy Wright.

"The Government don't want to know about us."

Mr Ludlow, a forestry worker, was abducted outside Dundalk by masked men and shot dead on May 2, 1976.

At the time, Gardai claimed Mr Ludlow had links to the IRA and had been killed because he was an informer, an allegation always denied by his family.

But 25 years later it was claimed that Gardai had been informed by the RUC in 1979 of the four loyalist suspects they believed were involved in the murder but Gardai had not taken action.

This prompted the Irish Government to order Justice Barron to conduct a series of investigations into the murder, particularly collusion between loyalists and security forces in the North, which resulted in last November's Barron Report and the current hearings at the Oireachtas.


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Download the Barron Report from the Oireachtas website (pdf file)

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Bank of Ireland
78 Clanbrassil Street
Dundalk
County Louth
Ireland

Account No. 70037984 

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Copyright 2006 the Ludlow family. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 19, 2006