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Key suspects in Sean Brown murder named

Mark 'Swinger' Fulton was found dead in his cell in Maghaberry Prison in June 2002. He had been remanded on a charge of conspiracy to murder Lurgan solicitor Rosemary Nelson
Connla Young

Members of the LVF gang suspected of murdering GAA official Sean Brown 20 years ago have been named in legal documents lodged with the High Court last week.

The details are contained in a writ lodged in court by solicitors acting for Mr Brown’s widow Bridget, who is claiming compensation from Chief Constable George Hamilton and Ministry of Defence.

Several of those involved in Mr Brown’s murder are believed to have been working as state agents at the time.

The writ states that the court will be asked to “infer that the killers were protected by their handlers”.

The 61-year-old was attacked and beaten by LVF members as he locked the gates at Bellaghy Wolfe Tones GAC in May 1997.

He was then put in the boot of his own car and taken to a country lane outside Randalstown in Co Antrim where he was shot six times.

His remains were later found beside his burning car.

No-one has ever been charged in connection with his murder.

A father-of-six, Mr Brown was well known in south Derry as a dedicated family man and chairman of the Bellaghy GAA club.

Sean Brown 

The suspects include some of the most notorious members of the LVF, which was formed in 1996 after former commander Billy Wright was expelled from the UVF.

While senior figures in the group were previously suspected of involvement in Mr Brown’s murder, the key suspects are now being publicly named for the first time.

They include former boss Mark ‘Swinger’ Fulton. He is believed to have taken his own life Maghaberry Prison in 2002.

Also named is Portadown loyalist Muriel Gibson. She was sentenced to eight years in 2007 for LVF membership and destroying evidence following the murder of 28-year-old Catholic man Adrian Lamph in Portadown in 1998.

Half brothers who share the same name, Laurence ‘Duffer’ Kincaid and Laurence ‘Larry’ Kincaid are also named as suspects.

Laurence ‘Duffer’ Kincaid

Loyalist Roy Stewart has also been identified as a suspect in the killing.

Although not listed as a suspect, another prominent Portadown loyalist Jim Fulton, who is a brother of Mark ‘Swinger’ Fulton, is also referred to in the court papers.

It is alleged that he and his brother were given “documentation and assistance from the Ministry of Defence and MI5 to aid them in the LVF targeting” of nationalists.

In 2007 he was convicted for his part in the murder of Elizabeth O’Neill (59) in Portadown in 1999 and a range of other LVF linked charges.

Ms O’Neill, a Protestant married to a Catholic, was killed when a pipe bomb was thrown through the living room window of her home.

Jim Fulton was convicted for his part in the murder of the Elizabeth O’Neill

The writ states that the gun used to kill Mr Brown has also been used in several other murders in the Mid Ulster area.

It also alleges that the "CID investigation of the murder was hampered by the failures of RUC Special Branch to pass information on to the investigating detectives, in so far at a very early stage of the murder investigation, RUC Special Branch were aware of the identities of those involved in the murder".

The writ adds that "the court will be invited to infer that the defendants encouraged and/or knew of the Mid Ulster LVFs activities, which included murder and serious related offenses of terrorism, and then facilitated and/or tolerated it by acts/or omissions which conferred impunity upon the certain members of the LVF bother before and after the murder of the deceased".

The burnt out car at the scene where Sean Brown's body was found near Randelstown in Co Antrim

Solicitor Kevin Winters from KRW Law said: "With the never ending political stalemate destroying the implementation of a truth recovery process and strangling the inquest system it is little wonder that hundreds of families like the Browns have seen fit to take civil actions to expose collusion allegations."

"Only last week we received yet more depressing news in the form of a letter from the coroner telling us there is no chance of a hearing because of resources difficulties.

"With her statement of claim now served the widow of Sean Brown will push ahead with her action against the state."

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