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European Court dismisses Omagh bombing pair's 'unfair trial' claim

The European Court of Human Rights has dismissed a claim by the men found liable for the Omagh bombing that the civil court action against them was unfair.

Michael McKevitt and Liam Campbell took a case to Strasbourg claiming they were not given a fair hearing in regard to the 2009 civil legal action against them.

The landmark ruling found the pair liable for the bombings.

They were ordered to pay substantial damages. Both made an appeal, but this was dismissed by the Court of Appeal in 2011. They were refused permission to appeal to the Supreme Court on 27 July 2012.

In 1998 a 500lb bomb exploded in Omagh killing 29 people including a mother expecting twins. More than 200 others were injured.

It was biggest single atrocity of the Troubles.

The Real IRA was thought to be behind the blast although no organisation ever admitted responsibility.

McKevitt and Campbell, in their application to the European Court, argued that given the severity of the charges the court should have applied the criminal burden of proof as opposed to the lesser civil standard.

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