Belfast Telegraph

Pair arrested over the brutal 1999 murder of former IRA supergrass

By Chris Kilpatrick

Two men were being quizzed by detectives last night in relation to the murder of a former IRA man turned informer 15 years ago.

Eamon Collins (45) was stabbed and beaten on a country road just outside Newry.

It is believed Provisional IRA members from south Armagh murdered the father-of-four for turning supergrass.

A 42-year-old suspect was detained in Newry yesterday morning and a house searched. A second man, aged 55, was later arrested in connection with the killing.

Both suspects were taken to Antrim serious crime suite for questioning.

Mr Collins was knocked down by a vehicle, attacked and knifed while out walking his dogs on January 27, 1999, in the Dorans Hill area near the city.

While in the organisation, Mr Collins collected information on police officers and RUC Special Branch members and set up assassinations over a six-year period. He was arrested in 1985 and charged with 50 terrorist offences including five murders and membership of the IRA.

He turned supergrass after his arrest, and said he was prepared to give evidence against former colleagues. But he retracted his statements under pressure from his family.

He was subsequently charged with five murders and dozens of terrorist offences but was not convicted and returned to live in Newry.

In 1997, Collins wrote a devastating expose of the IRA, Killing Rage, based on his life as a terrorist.

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