Sunday Life

Ombudsman team on trail of UVF bar massacre gang

14 November 2004

The Police Ombudsman's office says she is still investigating why a prime suspect in the Loughinisland massacre was never charged.

Nuala O'Loan revealed that her investigators are currently sifting through a dossier of unanswered questions about the UVF massacre of six Catholics a decade ago.

It has now been revealed that members of her investigative team have started to review 'cold-case' police files, in the hunt for the UVF gang that carried out the atrocity in the Co Down village, in June 1994.

The investigation was prompted by a dossier compiled by the SDLP's former South Down MLA, Eamonn O'Neill, on behalf of relatives of the men killed at The Heights Bar.

Mrs O'Loan's office is assessing if everything possible has been done to catch the killers - and if there was security force collusion.

A former soldier has long been suspected of helping plan the killings and acting as getaway driver for the Belfast-based murder-gang, in what was the last UVF atrocity of the Troubles.

A spokesman for Mrs O'Loan's office said yesterday: "We are currently reviewing police files in relation to the case, and liasing closely with the families involved.

"At the end of that process, we will make a decision as to what further action is necessary."

The Loughinisland killings have become known locally as the 'forgotten' tragedy of the Troubles, because no one was ever charged.

The victims were shot dead as they watched a World Cup football game on television at the bar.

They included the oldest victim of the Troubles - 87-year-old Barney Green.

His 59-year-old nephew, Dan McCreanor, died beside him; the youngest to die was 34-year-old Adrian Rogan. Brothers-in-law Eamon Byrne and Patsy O'Hare, and Malcolm Jenkinson were the other victims.

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