Case Review
Hamilton Enquiry
Whats New
How to Help

New GuestMap Guest Book.

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:

More questions than answers in Ludlow killing 

The details of Séamus Ludlow's death in 1976 have been told, and retold, but answers remain elusive, writes Mark Hennessy, Political Correspondent.

Séamus Ludlow was a quiet forestry worker, known by few outside his Dundalk home before he left his local pub in the early hours of May 1st, 1976.

He never made it home. Instead, he was picked up by four men near the bridge on the Dundalk/Newry Road near his Thistle Cross home, shot three times at close range and dumped in a ditch.

The Garda investigation produced nothing. Believing that Mr Ludlow was an IRA informer who had died as "touts" die, garda detectives quickly and quietly shredded his reputation.

Everyone was blamed for the killing - the IRA, loyalist paramilitaries, the SAS, neighbours, even his family. One theory was that he was a victim of mistaken identity. The family was ignored for years until the mid-1990s and not even informed of his inquest. However, evidence later emerged that a group of loyalist paramilitaries from mid-Ulster, an area known as the "Murder Triangle" during the Troubles, had killed him.

A Garda inquiry followed which revealed that they had been told in 1979 by the RUC about four suspects, though it emerged that detectives were not allowed to travel North to interview them. Oddly, the RUC had the intelligence about the four for 18 months before they passed it on to the Garda - though no reason for the failure to do so has been advanced despite several inquiries.

The RUC was approached again, and the men were arrested in 1998. During questioning, two of the four admitted being present when Mr Ludlow was murdered, but denied involvement. The RUC sent a file to the Northern Ireland director of public prosecutions, but he decided that no prosecution could be brought against any of the four on the grounds of insufficient evidence.

Last year, former High Court judge Mr Justice Henry Barron concluded that four men, James Fitzsimmons, Richard Long, Samuel Carroll and Paul Hosking, were in the car that took Mr Ludlow to his brutal death. By the time the RUC told the gardaí in 1979 of the existence of the four, two, Long and Carroll were in prison - the first for the murder of David Spratt just a month after Ludlow's killing and the second for firearms offences.

In his findings, Mr Justice Barron found that Garda officers had not tried to interview the four because they had been directed not to do so by more senior officers.

It was alleged that a formal policy existed preventing gardaí from going into Northern Ireland for fear of the RUC demanding similar access in the Republic.

Former garda commissioner Laurence Wren was probably the man who told investigating officers not to go North, Mr Justice Barron ruled - a charge vehemently and repeatedly rejected by Mr Wren.

In its report yesterday, the Oireachtas revealed a letter from Garda headquarters which said Garda detectives travelled three times during the 1970s into the North to take evidence. Garda Commissioner Noel Conroy, his predecessor, Pat Byrne and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, Michael McDowell have all apologised for the failings of the State.

Commissioner Byrne was frank in his apology, believing that his organisation had failed to follow the investigation through - though he denied that it was conspiracy. Instead he blamed a series of errors. Thirty years on, the Oireachtas inquiry has recommended that the gardaí try again - that it attempts to follow the PSNI's "cold case investigations" model.

Meanwhile, the British government has been accused of failing to co-operate fully with the inquiry.

The Oireachtas committee has recommended that a commission of investigation be set up. Though it would have the powers of a public tribunal, particularly to force the attendance of witnesses, it will meet mostly in private. The family have rejected the recommendation.

I Top

The Irish Times, 30 March 2006:

Oireachtas inquiry: findings

Key points made by the Oireachtas Committee on Justice on the Ludlow killing.

A commission of investigation should investigate the Ludlow killing further.

It will be able to order witnesses to testify, seize papers and can recommend a public inquiry later on.

A Garda investigation should be set up into why RUC leads in 1979 were not followed up.

Oireachtas committee expressed "grave concerns" about collusion.

Changes already made to the Coroners Act should be implemented quickly.

Lack of co-operation from British authorities disappointing.

Former Garda commissioner Laurence Wren and a former detective inspector gave conflicting evidence to the inquiry.

I Top

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


Bank of Ireland
78 Clanbrassil Street
County Louth

Account No. 70037984 

   Thank You. 

Copyright © 2006 the Ludlow family. All rights reserved.
Revised: April 04, 2006