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 Irish News, 5 March 2003:

Family's wait for murder file over

By Valerie Robinson

The relatives of Seamus Ludlow are for the first time to be given access to the garda file on his murder 27 years after he was gunned down by loyalists. 

Louth County Coroner Ronan Maguire, who is due to conduct an inquest into Mr Ludlow's death, last night told the Irish News that he planned to meet the murder victim's family within the next week.

Mr Maguire also confirmed that he intended to give the relatives access to the file compiled by gardai investigating the 1976 killing.

"I plan to meet the family in the next week so that they can see what I have so far and tell me if there is anything more that they would like," the coroner said.

Describing the Garda file as a "very thick volume", Mr Maguire also revealed that it contained more than 100 statements and that he was still waiting on further information from the force.

Mr Ludlow's nephew Michael Donegan last night welcomed news that the family would be able to read the file after years of fighting to get access to details of the Garda investigation.

"We welcome this news. The family first started seeking access to the file in 1976 but we were always fobbed off. This is a first positive step for us and anything we get from the inquest will be seen as an advance," he said.

Mr Donegan added that the relatives remained anxious to see any RUC files on the Ludlow murder as well as the findings of an internal investigation of the Garda handling of the case.

Mr Ludlow, a 47-year-old forestry worker, was shot dead after he hitched a lift in the killer's car from a Dundalk pub to his home near the border on May 2 1976.

Gardai initially told the victim's family that the IRA had killed him - a claim strenuously denied by local republicans who visited his relatives after the killing.

It was later established that a loyalist killer gang from the Red Hand Commando, including two serving members of the UDR, abducted him.

The victim's relatives who have been campaigning for an independent inquiry into the murder and subsequent investigations believe the killers were protected because they were passing information to the RUC.

The family also expressed anger that the first inquest into Mr Ludlow's death took place in their absence after the Garda neglected to inform them that it had been scheduled for August 19 1976.

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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 Sunday Life, 28 July 2002: Inquest to name Ludlow killers

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

Ulster Television (UTV), online 29 July 2002: Celtic League in demand over murder

The Examiner, 30 July 2002: Ludlow killers to be named

The Irish News, 6 August 2002: Celtic League to fight on for murder inquiry

The Argus (Dundalk), 23 August 2002: Coroner wants the law changed to compel witnesses to attend inquests

The Irish News, 27 August 2002, Loyalist victim's family call for answers

The Irish News, 29 August 2002: Murder bullets lost, Ludlow family told

Magill Magazine, September 2002:The Truth Trickles Out   Mystery has always surrounded the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings. An independent inquiry has been set up to look at the events surrounding the attacks, and the bombing of Dundalk the following year. Donall O Maolfabhail reports on its likely findings.

The Dundalk Democrat, 8 March 2003: Ludlow murder: files to be made available

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Revised: March 07, 2003 .