Seamus Ludlow, aged 47, was abducted by loyalist paramilitaries in County Louth and shot dead on May 2, 1976, but gardaí never interviewed the suspects identified by the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) 18 months later.

At the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Justice, Judge Henry Barron was asked if this decision had been taken because of the volatile situation at the time. “I think the reality is that it was probably political,” he replied.

Committee member Senator Jim Walsh suggested that, while he did not agree with it, one possibility was that the Government did not want the loyalist suspects interviewed because it might inflame republican sympathies.