The Barron Inquiry - Draft Terms of Reference for Inquiry - A Fresh Inquest - 2005 Inquest Account - BIRW Report - Witness Account - Ludlow Family Account - Sunday World report May 1976 - Meeting the Police Ombudsman - Ed Moloney Radio Interview - 25th Anniversary - Profile - Questions - Photographs - Press Release - Letter to RUC - Magill article 1999 - Press Coverage - Barron Report Published - Ludlow Family Response to Barron Report - Download the Barron Report from the Oireachtas website (pdf file) - Statement from Justice for the Forgotten - Joint Oireachtas Committee Request for Submissions - Joint statement from Justice for the Forgotten, Relatives for Justice and the Pat Finucane Centre - Download Transcript of Ludlow family meeting with Oireachtas Sub-Committee (Word file)
Joint Committee on Justice, Equality, Defence and Women's Rights
Sub-Committee on the Barron Report on the Murder of Seamus Ludlow
Hearing, 24 January 2006
Submission by Brendan Ludlow, a nephew of the late Seamus Ludlow, before the Oireachtas sub-committee.
Open hearings of the Joint Oireachtas sub-committee on Justice's inquiry into the recently published Barron Report into the 1976 murder of Seamus Ludlow commenced on 24 January 2006 with submissions from several members of the extended Ludlow family. In the afternoon session important submissions were also made by Justice for the Forgotten and British Irish Rights Watch.
Joint Oireachtas sub-committee sessions continued the following week on 31 January and 1 February, with important evidence taken from retired Gardai and former politicians, as well as the current Garda Commissioner.
Brendan Ludlow is a nephew of Seamus Ludlow.
Perhaps he will give us some information on how the family felt.
Brendan Ludlow: I
thank the sub-committee for the opportunity to attend and to speak.
In 1972, two gardaí came to stay in our house and they were put up by my
mother and father. This is how my
mother and father treated the State. They
put them up between 1972 and 1976. I
joined the 27th battalion of the Defence Forces in 1977 and operated on the
Border where Seamus was killed. I
operated there from 1977 until 1999. This
is how we treated the State. The
State has treated us as described from 1976 to date; we have had nothing else
but the same treatment from the Garda Síochána.
G. Murphy: Given
Mr. Brendan Ludlow's experience as a member of the Defence Forces when the RUC
supplied names to the Garda Síochána - a matter on which there was no
follow-up by the force - does he believe there was a policy in the Twenty-Six
Counties at the time to the effect that leads given by the RUC to the Garda
would not be followed up or that the Garda would not interview people in the Six
Counties? Does he believe that a
political decision was made in this regard?
G. Murphy: There
was never any effort on the part of the security forces, the Garda Síochána or
the Army in the South to interview people in the North.
B. Ludlow: I
do not understand the question.
G. Murphy: Does
Mr. Ludlow believe the Garda was under instructions on foot of a policy not to
interview the four people the RUC mentioned?
B. Ludlow: Yes.
Does Mr. Brendan Ludlow believe that decision was correct or incorrect in the
context of the period? The excuse
has been made that the UK authorities were seeking other concessions, including
the right to overfly the Republic's territory, at that stage.
In that context, politicians down here made a decision based on the
belief that if they sought rights in the Six Counties, they would have to
concede rights to the British in the Twenty-Six Counties.
B. Ludlow: Yes.
G. Murphy: Does Mr. Brendan Ludlow believe that was a
good policy decision?
G. Murphy: Given Mr. Brendan Ludlow's understanding of
the circumstances at the time, does he believe that was the only alternative?
B. Ludlow: I would say that was the alternative they
came up with.
G. Murphy: I would like to ask about something that
has been discussed before. What is
Mr. Brendan Ludlow's reaction to Mr. Justice Barron's finding that the Garda
investigation, as a clinical investigation, was carried out properly?
B. Ludlow: For me, it was not carried out properly.
B. Ludlow: Basically speaking, the Garda told my father nothing.
They treated my aunts and uncles with the utmost disrespect.
G. Murphy: There has been no contact whatsoever from
the Garda about any of those issues since then.
B. Ludlow: There has been no apology and nothing has
come forward at all.
G. Murphy: When it became clear to the Garda that it
had misinformed the family and that the initial allegations or rumours were
incorrect, no efforts were made----
B. Ludlow: Nothing.
Thank you, Brendan, for coming in to assist us.
We received a helpful document from your solicitor prior to our hearings
which indicates that Brendan Ludlow's contribution will address the sense of
betrayal experienced by the family. We
can all understand that. The
document states that your contribution will address how ordinary citizens fell
victim to what appear to have been State policies which did not spare the most
deserving. Could you elaborate on
those State policies?
Brendan Ludlow: I do not understand the question.
I do not understand, but I think what you mean is my mother and father had put
up two gardaí in the house. They
were very helpful to the State. I
was very helpful to the State when I took a job in the Defence Forces.
From 1976, however, until 2006 we have been treated in the same way by
the Garda Síochána, we do not get any information from them.
The document says there was a State policy.
I am trying to find out what that policy was.
Was there a policy-----
Seamus, could you answer that question?
That addresses Mr. Justice Barron's observation that security branch had a
policy decision and that policy decision in effect meant that this crime was not
investigated and this family was not protected.
That is obviously something this committee will wish to examine.
It is the classic big policy question, something we are anxious that the
We will not do that immediately. We
would like to stick with Mr. Brendan Ludlow and what he has to say.
The family obviously had issues with the Garda and the State from early on.
Why, on a personal level, did you feel it appropriate for you to become a
member of an organ of the State? The
Garda is similar to the Army.
Why did they not want to investigate? Do
you not know?
I Top I
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