Belfast Telegraph

NI man arrested over 1985 killing released

By Brett Campbell

A pensioner arrested in Northern Ireland in connection with the killing of an exiled Seychelles politician has been released under investigation.

Gerard Hoarau was gunned down on his doorstep in Edgware, north London, in 1985.

He was shot with a Sterling sub-machine gun.

Scotland Yard announced on Thursday that a 77-year-old man had been arrested in Antrim on suspicion of conspiracy to murder.

The suspect, who had not previously been arrested as part of the investigation, was released yesterday.

Several individuals were previously detained in connection with the assassination, but no charges followed.

Three people were convicted of perverting the course of justice by meddling with the investigation in 1986.

The trail then went cold for decades, prompting a review in 2016 from which fresh lines of inquiry were established, according to the force.

Yesterday neighbours of the man arrested in Antrim spoke of their shock.

One said: "I didn't know what was going on but I knew it was serious.

"I left the house at 9.30am to drop my daughter off at summer scheme and when I returned at 10.15am the place was swarming with police."

They added: "This is a really quiet area and nothing like this ever happens here, but it's even more shocking because this is not a man you would expect to be accused of involvement in a political assassination."

Mr Hoarau was the leader of the Mouvement Pour La Resistance (MPR) which sought the peaceful overthrow of the France-Albert Rene regime which had come to power in a coup d'etat.

Police have never solved his murder, but the Rene government were highly implicated.

As well as the hired hit-man, British police also believed that there was another individual-believed to be a Seychellois-who knew Hoarau and was able to identify him to the foreign assassin.

Neither Hoarau's assassin nor his accomplice has been caught.

Belfast Telegraph

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