The Murder of Seamus Ludlow in County Louth, May 1976. Towards a public inquiry?







3 July 2002 - The Irish Attorney General has directed the Coroner for County Louth to hold a fresh inquest into the death of Seamus Ludlow.  . . . . Please return for updates and important developments.    This photograph of Seamus Ludlow was taken later in his life.This is a youthful photograph of Seamus Ludlow, taken several years before his murder.This memorial stone marks the place where the dead body of Seamus Ludlow was discovered on Sunday 2nd. May, 1976. This new stone recently replaced another stone.




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Celtic League, 21 September 2002:



"almost as if casting a light on the darker side of these British Special Operations in Ireland was now an embarrassment to be set aside".

The Taoiseach has deflected concerns expressed by the Celtic League about his governments failure to concede a full public enquiry into the death of Co. Louth Forestry Worker, Seamus Ludlow.

The Celtic League had written to Mr. Ahern following consideration of the issue at the organisations AGM held on the Isle of Man in July. The League have, for sometime, supported calls by the family of Mr. Ludlow, for a full independent public enquiry into his murder in 1976.

In July League Secretary General, Bernard Moffatt, told the AGM that there were substantial allegations that the murder was committed by a loyalist murder gang which may have had links to British Security Services in the North of Ireland. The issue is one of a number of unresolved killings and bombings thought to be linked to the British Intelligence Services. He went on to express a view that there seemed in some instances to be almost a conspiracy to frustrate those organisations, mainly relatives groups, in Ireland anxious to learn the truth about the activities of the British Intelligence Services and their surrogates from the Loyalist paramilitary groups who killed, bombed and maimed in the 1970s. It was almost as if casting a light on the darker side of these British Special Operations in Ireland was now an embarrassment
to be set aside.

It was resolved that:

Whilst welcoming the decision of Attorney General, Rory Brady, to instruct the Coroner for County Louth, Mr. Ronan Maguire BL, to hold an inquest into the death of Seamus Ludlow, the Celtic League reiterates its support for the Ludlow families request for a full and independent public enquiry."

A response from David Feeney Private Secretary to the Taoiseach says:

"In reply the Taoiseach has asked me to say that earlier this year the Government asked former Supreme Court Judge, Henry Barron who is also examining the Dublin, Monaghan and Dundalk bombings to carry out an examination of the murder of Seamus Ludlow and the circumstances surrounding it. Judge Barron is due to report in the near future and the government is committed to publishing his report. It is intended that the report will be considered by the Oireachtas which will recommend as to what if any form of public examination will be required".

The reply is extremely disappointing. Experience tells us that selective examination of matters of this nature, however eminent the Justice involved, lack the 'cauterising' ability of a full public enquiry to unearth the truth.

Bernard Moffatt

Secretary General

Celtic League


The Celtic League has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It focuses on human rights abuse and civil liberty issues and also monitors the impact of military activity.

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No.164  MURDER GANG ENQUIRY CALL - 10/30/2000






                                Press Reports

The Argus, 27 August 1976: Inquest hears of North Louth shooting

Monaghan County of Intrigue (1979) by the late Michael Cunningham: Quoting from Mr. Cunningham's account of his private investigation of Seamus Ludlow's murder. 

The Argus, special report 30 August 1985: On May 1st 1974, a forestry worker left his home to go for a drink: the following day his bullet riddled body was found. Nine years later we ask: WHO KILLED SEAMUS LUDLOW?

The Irish Independent, 19 July 2002: Fresh inquest into death of murdered man

The Irish News, 19 July 2002: Family welcome inquest 26 years after murder

The Irish Times, 19 July 2002: New inquest ordered into Louth man's death

The Dundalk Democrat, 20 July 2002: Second inquest to be held into the death of Seamus Ludlow

The Irish Examiner Online - Breaking News, 29 July 2002: Call for public inquiry into 1976 murder


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Revised: January 12, 2003 .