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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 OmbudsmanEd 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) - Publication of the Oireachtas Report - Download the Final Oireachtas Sub-Committee Report on the murder of Seamus Ludlow from the Oireachtas website (pdf file) - Ludlow family press release in response to the Oireachtas Report

Original Ludlow Family website - Second Ludlow Family website - The Dundalk Bombing

The Irish Times, 30 March 2006:

Committee calls for Ludlow killing inquiry

A new investigation into the 1976 killing of Co Louth man Séamus Ludlow by suspected loyalist paramilitaries must be launched by the Garda, an Oireachtas inquiry has found, writes Mark Hennessy, Political Correspondent.

In its final report into the murder, the inquiry said the Garda had treated the Ludlow family "in an appalling manner", even failing to notify them of the inquest into his death. "The gardaí do not seem to have made any inquiries in Northern Ireland in 1976 or seriously considered the possibility of collusion," (by members of the British security forces) it declared.

Mr Ludlow was shot three times at close range and dumped in a ditch after he had left a local pub near his Thistle Cross, Dundalk home on May 1st, 1976. His reputation was badly tarnished in the months after the killing because gardaí believed he was an IRA member shot as an informer.

Following a Garda inquiry in the mid-1990s it emerged that the RUC had told gardaí about four suspects for the killing in 1979 - but detectives failed to take the opportunity to interview the four men. The men were eventually interviewed in 1998, though the Northern Ireland director of public prosecutions decided not to prosecute due to insufficient evidence.

An Garda Síochána should now co-operate with the PSNI's "cold case" investigation team, which has been given a £30 million budget to review all unsolved killings from the Troubles.

Though it acknowledged that the State's authorities faced major difficulties during the 1970s, the inquiry said the security and political crisis at the time did not excuse the fact that the Ludlow investigation stopped though four suspects had been identified. "No matter how turbulent the times, the investigation into the murder of a citizen of the State should not be sacrificed for any reason," the TDs found.

An earlier investigation by former High Court judge, Mr Justice Henry Barron identified four men, James Fitzsimmons, Richard Long, Samuel Carroll and Paul Hosking - two of whom served in the Ulster Defence Regiment at the time, as being involved. A Commission of Investigation, which has public inquiry-like powers, though it hears evidence in private, should also be set up, said the Oireachtas Justice, Equality, Defence and Women's Rights sub-committee, chaired by Fianna Fáil Dublin South Central TD Seán Ardagh.

However, it has emerged that gardaí interviewed witnesses in Northern Ireland on three occasions during the 1970s, though former Garda commissioner Larry Wren told the inquiry that gardaí were blocked from doing so by a 1953 directive.

The committee found "a clear conflict" exists between Mr Wren and former Det Insp John Courtney, who claims that Mr Wren stopped him travelling to the North to interview the suspects. In a March 2006 letter, the garda stated that numerous gardaí had travelled into the North to interview suspects about an armed robbery at Dundalk railway station in February 1973 and two murders in Donegal in 1972, while detectives travelled to Guernsey to interview people about the murder of Robert Munro Nish, whose body was found outside Castlebellingham, Co Louth, in May 1972.

Unhappy with the committee's findings, Mr Ludlow's nephew, Michael Donegan said the Government does not want to have all the evidence heard in public. The Government, he said, had demanded rightly that the British government launch a full public inquiry into the 1989 killing of Belfast solicitor, Pat Finucane - yet it wants to operate by a lower standard about killings in the State.

The extended Ludlow family said some witnesses are only prepared to co-operate with a full public inquiry.

© The Irish Times


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Revised: April 03, 2006