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Coroner rules informer Gilmour died from natural causes

An image of Raymond Gilmour used with an online appeal for help paying his funeral costs
Seamus McKinney

IRA informer Raymond Gilmour died from unspecified natural causes, an English coroner has concluded.

A spokesman for the coroner in Kent confirmed yesterday that the investigation into the Derry man's death in October last year has been discontinued.

The coroner also revealed for the first time that Gilmour had been living under the pseudonym “Raymond Hilton” since he was given a new identity by British security services 30 years ago.

The spokesman said: “The investigation into the death of Raymond Hilton (aka Gilmour) has been discontinued. The death was due to natural causes.”

His badly decomposed body was discovered by his 18-year-old son on October 29 last year in the flat in which he had been living. It was believed his body had lain undiscovered for up to a week.

One of the most significant informers of the troubles, Gilmour was from Derry's Creggan. As a member of the INLA, he was involved in a botched hijacking in December 1977 in which fellow INLA member, Colm McNutt (18) was shot dead by the SAS.

On the instructions of his RUC handler, he left the INLA and joined the IRA in Derry. After the discovery of an M60 machine gun in 1982, he went into protective custody.

In 1984, he testified against 31 Derry people at a Diplock non-jury court, claiming they were members of illegal organisations. However, all charges were dropped when presiding judge, Lord Lowry rejected his evidence.

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