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


The Sunday World, 27 September 1998:

Ludlow killers were known for years

Suspects identities passed to police but arrests never made

By Sean Boyne

A relative of a man murdered in the Border area more than 20 years ago has demanded to know why the prime suspects were not arrested after their identities came to light.

The Sunday World learned yesterday that the RUC passed to the gardai the names of at least three loyalists believed to have been involved in the murder of Seamus Ludlow near Dundalk in may 1976.

About three years after the murder, the names were given by the RUC to Det Chief Supt John Courtney, who passed the information on to his superiors.

Friends of chief Supt Courtney, who is now retired, said the experienced detective was surprised and concerned when the information was not followed up on by the garda authorities.

The names of the suspects were put on file, along with other sensitive information about the case supplied by the RUC. Nobody was ever charged with the murder of Mr Ludlow.


A nephew of the murdered man, Mr Jimmy Sharkey, said the whole affair was still shrouded in mystery, and there were many questions still to be answered.

He wanted to know why the prime suspects were not arrested after their names came to light.

He said; "The family want an independent public inquiry, north and south, into this case."

The Sunday World has learned that Chief Supt Courtney, a member of the Murder Squad, travelled with a colleague to RUC HQ in Belfast, where he met with senior RUC officers a few years after the murder.

He was given the names of at least three men linked to the UVF who were the prime suspects for the murder of Mr Ludlow (47), whose body was found in a ditch in an isolated lane two miles north of Dundalk, in the same year and the same area as capt Robert Nairac was murdered.

It's believed that Mr Ludlow who had no paramilitary connections, was shot dead because he just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.


Chief Supt Courtney was one of the most experienced murder investigators in the gardai, and was credited with a string of successes during a long and distinguished career in the Murder Squad.

Among the high profile cases he investigated were the murders of Captain Nairac and Nurse Bridie Gargan in the early 1980s.

Two years ago, gardai reopened their investigation of the Ludlow case, and have been liaising with the RUC. It's understood that an extensive new file has been compiled on the case.


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