The Murder of Seamus Ludlow in County Louth, May 1976. Towards a public inquiry?
Introduction to the murder of Seamus Ludlow and the official cover-up.
The recent Campaign for Truth and Justice.
Other Ludlow Family Sites.
The Dundalk Democrat, 21 August 1999:
"A deafening silence"
A "Deafening silence" are words used by the Ludlow family to describe the reaction by the state authorities in the aftermath of the publication of the Victim Commission report "A Place and a Name", which recommends a private enquiry into the tragic murder of Seamus Ludlow, writes Anne-Marie Eaton.
Including the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings, the murder of Mountpleasant man Seamus Ludlow and the 1975 Dundalk Bombing, the report was compiled by Victims Commissioner and former Tanaiste, John P. Wilson, who, many may remember, was involved in the recent efforts to locate victims remains including those of Mrs Jean McConville, who, it was alleged, was buried at Templetown in Cooley.
At present a file is still with the Director of Public Prosecutions in Northern Ireland concerning the murder of Seamus Ludlow, which, it is alleged, was carried out by the Red Hand Commandos. One eyewitness to the murder, Paul Hosking, has come forward and four men were questioned in recent years in Belfast in relation to the murder.
One particular section of the report deals with interviews with the victims' families and included interviews with Seamus Ludlow's family.
Mr Wilson comments on the feeling of relatives if a criminal trial were to go ahead in relation to the murder: " The victim's family, however, make the argument that a criminal trial, if one does take place, will not necessarily bring out the facts of the case because it may not be relevant or necessary to do so, particularly if the accused plead guilty."
For many years now the family believe that there was a "cover-up" into the investigations by some members of the Gardai and their hope for further investigations into such maters is also highlighted in the report. "Some of the maters they would like to investigated relate not directly to the crime itself but to the investigations of the crime."
On his interview with the family, Mr Wilson concluded: "I find the allegations about the conduct of certain Gardai Siochana and about the conduct of the investigation, very disturbing."
The report recommends that an enquiry into Seamus' murder be conducted in the same manner as that recommended for the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings, that is that "A retired Supreme Court judge should be appointed to privately conduct an independent enquiry".
In his more in depth section on the Conclusions and Recommendations, Mr Wilson explains the recommendations and his reasons for such a conclusion - "I am swayed by the argument that a criminal trial will not necessarily bring out the full facts of the case." He goes on to comment that such an enquiry should not compromise criminal proceedings, and suggests that no report on the enquiry be published until "any prosecution has finished, unless no prosecution has been initiated before the completion of the inquiry or within twelve months, whichever is the later."
Of the Dublin and Monaghan bombing and the Ludlow family's concern that no one was ever charged in relation to the murders, Mr Wilson comments: "I believe that it is in the broad public interest of the Garda Siochana themselves that some answers be given."
While the Ludlow family are happy that the report has been published and has highlighted Seamus' murder, they disagree with the recommendation for a private enquiry and wish for all information concerned to be made public.
The family have sought a meeting with An Taoiseach Bertie Ahern. However, as yet only a letter acknowledging their request has been received.
The Dundalk Democrat, 7 August 1999: Ludlow murder inquiry report "A place and a name"
The Sunday Tribune, 8 August 1999: The case that is not going to go away
The Examiner, 10 August 1999: Report recommends inquiries into Ludlow murder, Dundalk bombing
The Dundalk Democrat, 14 August 1999: "Ludlow inquiry must be public" - says Arthur Morgan
The Dundalk Democrat, 14 August 1999: "Dublin/Monaghan bombings inquiry should be public" says O Caolain
The Dundalk Democrat, 21 August 1999: "A deafening silence"
The Sunday Tribune, Letters to the Editor, 19 September 1999: In support of Ed Moloney
The Sunday Tribune, Sunday 17 October 1999, by Ed Moloney: North's DPP has decided not to charge Loyalists arrested in connection with Ludlow killing