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Quinn family’s talks with Garda chief spark fresh hope


Breege and Stephen Quinn, parents of Paul Quinn. Credit: Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

Breege and Stephen Quinn, parents of Paul Quinn. Credit: Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

Breege and Stephen Quinn, parents of Paul Quinn. Credit: Kevin Scott / Belfast Telegraph

The family of murder victim Paul Quinn have said they are hopeful of a breakthrough in the case following a meeting with the Garda chief yesterday.

The 21-year-old from Cullyhanna, Co Armagh, was beaten to death with iron bars and nail-studded cudgels by a gang of around a dozen men in a farm shed across the border in Oram, Co Monaghan, in October 2007.

Mr Quinn had previously clashed with the son of the local IRA commander, and his family have always held the IRA responsible.

Paul’s mother Breege Quinn said: “Today I met with Garda Commissioner Drew Harris to get an update on the investigation.

"It was a very positive meeting. He stated that the progress had been made following the serious case review and that significant recommendations are being followed up. I’m hopeful that some of those recommendations lead to a breakthrough.

"I will continue to fight for justice for my son Paul.”

The Garda said: "Commissioner Harris met Mrs Quinn today and reconfirmed An Garda Síochána's absolute commitment to the thorough investigation into the murder of her son, Mr Paul Quinn."

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At the beginning of the year the Quinn family were given fresh hope as new DNA techniques are being used to re-examine old exhibits in the investigation, and a dedicated scientist from Forensic Science Ireland is now working on the case.

Around 200 exhibits seized in Carrickmacross, Co Monaghan, are being re-examined for traces of DNA, including clothing from some of the suspects and a vehicle.

Gardai have said they plan to reinterview suspects and those who have made statements about the murder once Covid-19 restrictions allow them to do so.

The PSNI is also set to examine items it has seized over the years.

The re-examination follows a review by the Garda’s serious crime review team, which was completed in late 2019.

In the years since Paul's murder detectives have followed 1,900 lines of inquiry, made 20 arrests and taken over 700 statements.

Gardai believe the gang who abducted and killed Paul spent weeks planning the attack.

Superintendent Gary Walsh, who is running the new probe, said: “The answer to this appalling crime lies in the area and it’s never too late for people to do the decent thing and to tell us what they know.”

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