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How Ronnie Bunting, the loyalist hardliner's son, became one of the INLA's most feared assassins

INLA killer Ronnie Bunting, son of a leading Paisleyite, was shot dead by loyalists 40 years ago, but was he set up in revenge for the assassination of Margaret Thatcher's closest confidant? Ivan Little takes a closer look

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In the crosshairs: some believe Ronnie Bunting was killed in retaliation for the murder of Airey Neave

In the crosshairs: some believe Ronnie Bunting was killed in retaliation for the murder of Airey Neave

In the crosshairs: some believe Ronnie Bunting was killed in retaliation for the murder of Airey Neave

It's one of the most compelling movies about the Troubles that's never been made. The story of Ronnie Bunting has all the intriguing ingredients for the darkest of conspiracy dramas about a loyalist hardliner's son who became one of the INLA's most feared assassins before he was murdered by the UDA/UFF, reputedly with the help of forces of the state.

It's 40 years ago next week since Bunting was shot dead in his bed and his wife, Suzanne, was badly injured in a gun attack that also claimed the life of an INLA associate, Noel Little.

But the passage of time hasn't dampened the controversy over the suspicion of collusion in the killings.