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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The Dundalk Democrat, 24 June 2000:

Amnesty supports family's fight for public inquiry

The efforts of the family of Seamus Ludlow to get a public inquiry into the May 1976 murder of the Mountpleasant man have been supported by Amnesty International, writes Anne-Marie Eaton.

The Amnesty International Report for 1999, noted the appointment of Chief Justice Liam Hamilton to carry out an independent private judicial inquiry into the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings. The inquiry would also investigate the 1975 Dundalk bombing, it was said.

The reports states: "By the end of 1999, it was still not decided whether the inquiry would also examine the killing of Seamus Ludlow in 1976, and the alleged cover-up by both British and Irish authorities. Seamus Ludlow was killed in Ireland, reportedly by a Northern Irish Loyalist group, which included two soldiers.".

The case of the murder had also been discussed at a meeting of Amnesty International Representatives and the Minister for Justice in June last year.


In the meantime, Seamus Ludlow's family have voiced their concern over the lack of interest shown by Taoiseach Bertie Ahern in their search for justice.

Speaking to the "Democrat" this week,  Mr Ludlow's nephew, Jimmy Sharkey said that the family welcomed the Taoiseach taking a stance and calling for a public inquiry into the death of Robert Hamill during a RTE Morning Ireland radio broadcast earlier this month.

However, he said, "We have never met with the Taoiseach to discuss Seamus' murder".

Jimmy had spoken to Mr Ahern for a very short time at a commemoration event for those who were killed in the Dublin and Monaghan bombings but as yet family representatives have only met with the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform, John O'Donoghue, which Jimmy states was not satisfactory.

The Ludlow family, through their solicitor, have once again requested a meeting with the Taoiseach, and are awaiting a reply.

On the net

In the meantime, the family's work continues, and Michael Donegan, a nephew of Mr Ludlow, has coordinated the setting up of websites on his uncle's murder and the investigations in the intervening twenty-four years. These websites have resulted in many messages of support, in particular from the United States.

The sites can be found at and at The second site can also be found

The first site covers events from Seamus Ludlow's murder in 1976 to January 2000, while both versions of the second site cover the more recent events. The full text of the report carried out by British Irish Rights Watch is given on all three sites.

Material on the two more recent sites include an editorial written by Linda Porra for a number of newspapers in the North Eastern United States.

The murder is also to be covered in a new book to be published shortly.

Author Bill Rolston has written a full chapter on the killing including interviews with Michael Donegan and Jimmy Sharkey, in his forthcoming book "Unfinished Business: State Killings and the Quest for Truth".

The book focuses on family members telling their stories of how they dealt with loved ones deaths and their experiences over the years in demanding justice. It also demonstrates how, because of necessity, ordinary people have become champions of human rights.

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