Anger at delay of canal death inquest

September 30, 2013

The family of a man who went missing ten years ago and whose body was recovered from Newry Canal two years later, is angry that an inquest into his death is yet to begin, solicitor Paul Dougan has said.

Mr Dougan says it is ‘nothing short of shameful’ that the family of Gareth O’Connor have had to wait this long to find out the circumstances surrounding the death of their son.

Gareth O’Connor’s badly decomposed body was found inside a car at Victoria Lock, Newry in June 2005.  The 24-year-old republican disappeared in May 2003 on his way to sign bail at Dundalk Garda station.  It is believed he was abducted and killed because he was an alleged police informant.

The inquest has yet to begin because issues around protecting the identity of witnesses and people named in sensitive police papers have not yet been resolved.  A non-jury inquest had been scheduled for November but has now been adjourned until at least February next year after it emerged that police have yet to complete a public-interest immunity (PII) on classified documents.