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, 7 August 2004:

Barron due to publish report

By Valerie Robinson

Southern Correspondent

Justice Henry Barron is expected to publish his report into the 1976 murder of forestry worker Seamus Ludlow close to the border within weeks.

 Mr Ludlow, a 47-year-old bachelor, was found shot dead on a country lane north of Dundalk in May 1976. It is believed that he had been abducted earlier by a number of loyalists after leaving a pub.

 Retired Supreme Court judge Justice Barron told Mr Ludlow's relatives this week that he hoped to hand his findings over to the Irish government next month.

 The revelation came a week after the Irish News reported that Louth coroner Ronan Maguire expected to learn "within days" whether he would be given the findings of an internal Garda report on the original murder investigation.

 Mr Maguire, who is due to reopen the inquest into Mr Ludlow's death, repeatedly requested a copy of the 1998 report following concerns that the investigation was wrapped up hastily and that no-one had been charged in connection with the murder. A Garda spokesman said they were "cooperating with the coroner subject to legal advice".

 The contents of the report have never been revealed, but it is believed it confirms that gardai knew the names of Mr Ludlow's suspected loyalist killers as early as 1979 but failed to act on the information.

 Mr Ludlow's nephew, Jimmy Sharkey, said Judge Barron had told the family that the report would be available next month, but that a number of "black holes" existed in the Garda investigation between 1976 and 1979.

 It is now understood that the three bullets removed from Mr Ludlow's body are still in the Republic, contrary to an earlier belief that two of the bullets had gone missing after being sent to the north for examination.

 It is understood that two of the bullets were sent to the Northern Ireland forensic science laboratory for comparison with ballistics evidence from an investigation into the loyalist murder of a young Protestant man in Co Down shortly after the Dundalk killing.

 Mr Ludlow's family has now been told that the bullets were photographed by the Northern Ireland authorities before being returned to gardai.

 Meanwhile, Judge Barron, who published a major report on the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings last December, is said to be hopeful that his findings on the 1975 Dundalk bombing which claimed the lives of Jack Rooney and Hugh Watters will be made public in early 2005.


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See also:

The Irish News, April 1 2004: Collusion 'likely' according to Barron Report

The Irish News, 5 May 2004: Barron Report Due Next Month

The Irish News, 20 May 2004: Coroner plans inquest despite Garda hold-up

The Dundalk Democrat, 22 May 2004: A Quiet Anniversary

The Dundalk Democrat, 29 May 2004: Ludlow inquest before the end of July

The Irish Sunday Mirror, 13 June 2004, Ken Murray Our Man in the House column: Why the high failure rate?

The Irish Daily Star (Northern Edition), 23 July 2004: Gardai in murder case 'cover-up' Family claims Barron probe will reveal it

The Irish News, 29 July 2004 Southern News Coroner awaiting gardai findings in murder case 

Report on Ludlow murder ready ‘in autumn’

The Dundalk Democrat, 07 August 2004: Family to see Ludlow murder file for first time

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