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Relatives of murdered Garda to mark 20th anniversary

By Paul Williams

Published 06/06/2016

Family and colleagues of an Irish policeman murdered by the IRA will gather in the early morning light to mark the exact moment he was shot dead, 20 years on.

The family of Detective Garda Jerry McCabe - led by his widow Anne - will lay a wreath at 6.50am at the spot in the village of Adare, Co Limerick, where the merciless attack took place on June 7, 1996.

Four men served time for their involvement in the raid, but two other senior Provos who were involved in the attack are still officially wanted by Garda.

However, intelligence sources say that both men have regularly returned to Ireland since the killing.

Detective McCabe and his colleague Ben O'Sullivan were escorting a truck delivering cash to post offices in Co Limerick when they were ambushed.

Seconds after they stopped behind the mail truck in Adare their unmarked squad car was rammed from behind by a stolen Pajero off-road vehicle.

Two masked IRA men, armed with AK47 rifles, jumped out and one of them, the gang leader Kevin Walsh, fired 15 rounds at the officers - killing Mr McCabe and leaving his colleague critically injured.

Walsh, who was in command of the IRA Munster brigade, subsequently pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was jailed for 14 years.

Three other IRA members, Pearse McAuley from Strabane, Co Tyrone and Limerick men Michael O'Neill and Jeremiah Sheehy were also jailed. McAuley was subsequently jailed for 12 years for stabbing his wife several times in an attack on Christmas Eve 2014.

However, two other men fled the country - Gerry Roche from Dun Laoghaire and Corkman Paul Damery - who were both aged 45 at the time.

Garda believe that Roche was the second armed man who jumped out of the Pajero and surrounded the squad car. A founder member and subsequent leader of the INLA, he later defected to the IRA and moved to live in Shannon, Co Clare.

In 1991 a Belgian court convicted the lifelong terrorist of conspiracy to attack British bases in Europe. Roche had admitted to being the leader of an IRA gang plotting the attacks.

The second man still wanted is IRA bomb-maker Damery. He had spent several years working in Central America where he forged links with several terrorist groups. It is understood that he fled to live with his Venezuelan wife and has remained there since.

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