Belfast Telegraph

Man 'victim of mistaken identity'

The abduction and murder of an innocent man by republican paramilitaries at the height of the Troubles was a case of mistaken identity, his family claim.

Father-of-five Charlie Armstrong, one of the so-called Disappeared, suffered an unnatural and violent death after he went missing on his way to mass on August 16, 1981, an inquest heard.

Shotgun residue was discovered inside his car, which was found in Dundalk the day after he vanished.

A jury at Dublin City Coroner's Court recorded a verdict of death by unlawful killing at the hands of a paramilitary organisation.

His family believe he was abducted and murdered by the IRA, but no organisation has claimed responsibility for the killing.

Outside the courthouse the victim's daughter, Anna McShane, revealed the family had information to suggest her father's abduction was a case of mistaken identity.

"That's our belief, that it wasn't planned, that it wasn't a direct order," she said.

Despite her pain and grief, she said she would still give his murderers the benefit of the doubt.

"I know it's hard to believe and hard to say but I know he was an innocent man, they'd no need to do it, and I still would maintain it was something that wasn't meant to happen," she added.

The body of the 54-year-old, from Rathview Park, Crossmaglen, south Armagh, was weighed down with stones when it was discovered in a bog near Castleblayney, Co Monaghan, on July 29, 2010.

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