herald

Wednesday 17 January 2018

'Relatives crucial to solving IRA murder of Paul', gardai insist

Stephen and Breege Quinn Photo: Tony Gavin
Stephen and Breege Quinn Photo: Tony Gavin

Gardai believe female relatives and partners of those involved in the murder of Paul Quinn hold key information in relation to the gruesome crime.

So far, 23 people have been arrested and questioned in relation to the killing, which sent shock waves around the country.

Mr Quinn (21), from Cullyhanna, Co Armagh, was beaten to death by an IRA gang in a barn in Co Monaghan in 2007. Every bone in his body below his neck was broken by the gang, who used iron bars and nail-studded cudgels.

Between eight and 10 males are suspected of being directly involved in the fatal assault, while a range of logistical people including spotters were also involved.

"There are multiple strands to the core group of individuals involved, including partners, girlfriends, wives and brothers, who have knowledge about the killing," a source said last night.

The victim's parents, Stephen and Breege Quinn, have spoken out about how their son was murdered by "evil incarnate".

Butchered

"Ten years ago, a group of IRA thugs lured my baby boy to a shed in Monaghan. For close to an hour they beat him with iron bars and nail-studded cudgels," Mrs Quinn wrote on social media.

"Every major bone in Paul's body was broken. He was taken to hospital and medical staff worked on him for an hour or more.

"Every night when I close my eyes I see my boy lying there, butchered by evil incarnate."

A senior investigator leading the probe also raised concerns about a fear among those with information to come forward.

Detective Inspector James O'Brady told the Herald: "The history with Border counties is that there's a reluctance to come forward with information, be it to the police or An Garda Siochana.

"In recognition of that, we've got Crimestoppers - given the confidential nature of the service, people can give information. They can be contacted on 1800 25 00 25," said Det Insp O'Leary.

"The success of the investigation depends on the co-operation of members of the public. The life blood of any investigation is people providing statements."

Of the 23 people arrested in relation to the murder so far, 14 have been in this jurisdiction and nine in the North.

"The investigation is still active and is now currently being reviewed by the Serious Crime Review Team and local detectives to review progress in the case, and to try to identify new avenues of inquiry," said a garda spokesman.

"Over 700 statements have been obtained by An Garda Siochana and nearly 2,000 individual lines of inquiry have been pursued."

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