John McAnulty (48 ) from Warrenpoint, was abducted from a Dundalk pub and killed in July 1989. The IRA claimed he had been an informer for 17 years. Retired Garda Owen Corrigan told the tribunal yesterday he knew Mr McAnulty’s life was in danger but did not warn him. But he said he told his superiors of the threat. Tribunal lawyer Justin Dillon said Garda documents showed no evidence of intelligence from Mr Corrigan about the McAnulty threat prior to his murder.
The Tribunal is investigating whether Mr Corrigan and other former gardai, Leo Colton and Finbarr Hickey, passed information to the IRA which led to the deaths of RUC officers Chief Supt Harry Breen and Supt Bob Buchanan. The officers were killed in an IRA ambush in South Armagh after they left a meeting at Dundalk Garda station in March 1989.
Mr Dillon put it to Mr Corrigan that ” it was within your power ” to save the life of John McAnulty and ” you didn’t lift a finger “. Mr Corrigan replied: ” I did what I did at the time….I can’t say any more than that.” The lawyer suggested Mr Corrigan did not warn Mr McAnulty because the businessman was the source who had named the former garda as an IRA informer in an RUC intelligence document. Mr Corrigan’s lawyer objected, saying there was no evidence that Mr Corrigan was aware of the document and the gardai had said they were never made aware of the RUC intelligence. The tribunal continues.
WITH MANY THANKS TO : CLAIRE SIMPSON, IRISH NEWS.
DONALDSON PUSHES OVER IRA MURDER
A RETIRED Garda sergeant could be questioned by detectives about the murder of a border smuggler killed by the IRA in 1989.
DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson has urged Chief Constable Matt Baggott to direct resources to reinvestigate the murder of Co Down man John McAnulty following revelations about the murder at the Smithwick Tribunal. Evidence given to the Tribunal in Dublin last week revealed that former Garda Sergeant Owen Corrigan had filed an intelligence report after John McAnulty was murdered indicating that he knew that the Warrenpoint man was under threat from the IRA. But Corrigan admitted that he ” couldn’t say specifically if he warned him about the threat”.
And in an exchange with the Tribunal’s Counsel, a lawyer said Corrigan ” didn’t lift a finger ” to warn McAnulty that his life was in danger. Mr Corrigan replied : ” I can’t say any more than that.” He had told his bosses of the threat and it was up to them to liaise with the authorities in Northern Ireland, where Mr McAnulty lived, he said. McAnulty was the RUC informant who in 1985 told two Special Branch officers in Newry that Corrigan was assisting the IRA with details of security force movements. Lagan Valley Jeffrey Donaldson said the Chief Constable should now direct resources to reinvestigate the murder of John McAnulty. ” Evidence now given to the Smithwick Tribunal warrants an investigation of the murder of John McAnulty, who first made allegations about collusion by gardai in Dundalk station in 1985,” he said.
WITH MANY THANKS TO : ALAN MURRAY, SUNDAY LIFE.
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