Northern Ireland news

PSNI say they have no record of Co Armagh gun find claim

Aontú councillor and deputy leader Denise Mullen
Connla Young

An Aontú councillor whose father was killed by loyalists has complained to the Police Ombudsman after the PSNI said it has no record of a weapon and ammunition find in Co Armagh.

Mid Ulster councillor Denise Mullen says the gun was found by workmen at a house near Moy last Monday and that it was later handed over to police.

Ms Mullen said the gun, believed to be a .38 revolver, was discovered in a bag hidden between a sheet of asbestos and the tin roof of the building, which was being demolished.

The Aontú deputy leader said 200 rounds of ammunition was also found.

The house where the weapon was discovered is around one mile from the location where her father, SDLP activist Denis Mullen, was shot dead by members of the Glenanne Gang in September 1975.

The notorious gang, which included members of the RUC, UDR and UVF, was also responsible for other murders in the area.

Ms Mullen last night claimed that when workmen contacted police to inform them of the find they were told to take the weapon to a police station.

According to the councillor the gun was brought to a PSNI station in Armagh where it was handed over.

She said she was concerned that the police had not sealed off the find site and the weapon has been handled by several people.

"It's been found in the murder triangle where the Glenanne Gang, aided and abetted by the RUC and Ministry of Defence, perpetrated a reign of terror over nationalists," she said.

She added that she was concerned that the gun was found close to the scene of her father's murder.

Asked about the claims that a gun had been found a PSNI spokeswoman said it had "no record/report that matches this description".

Ms Mullen said she has contacted the Police Ombudsman and the office of Operations Kenova, which is currently examining the activities of the Glenanne Gang.

She also said her party leader Peadar Tóibín intends to raise the matter with Taoiseach Micheál Martin

A spokesman for the Police Ombudsman said: "We have received a complaint about how police dealt with the reported discovery of a firearm and ammunition near Moy in Co Tyrone last week.

"We are now considering this matter."

In 2016 the PSNI said it had “no knowledge” of a similar find by workmen at a property in the Tamnamore area of Co Tyrone.

However, the force later admitted that a gun and ammunition had been discovered.

In 2018 police said ballistics tests had been carried out on the weapon and

"it is not being linked to any known incident or crime at this time".

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