Northern Ireland news

Sinn Féin Finance Minister Conor Murphy interviewed by gardaí investigating Paul Quinn murder

Paul Quinn, the son of Breege and Stephen Quinn, who was beaten to death by a gang of around a dozen men in a farm shed near Castleblayney, Co Monaghan, in 2007. Picture Family Handout/PA Wire

SINN Féin Finance Minister Conor Murphy has confirmed he has been interviewed by Gardaí investigating the murder of Paul Quinn.

The 21-year-old was lured to farm buildings in Tullycoora, near Oram, Co Monaghan, about 10 kilometres from his home, and set upon by a gang wielding clubs and iron bars in October 2007.

He was beaten so hard that every major bone in his body was broken.

The lorry driver, who also operated machinery on building sites, died later from his catastrophic injuries at hospital in Drogheda.

The IRA never publicly admitted responsibility for the Co Armagh man's murder, but it was later claimed that the brutal killing was carried out in revenge for a run-in the 21-year-old had with the son of a senior IRA man.

In 2007, Mr Murphy said he spoke to IRA members about the murder and had been told the IRA was not involved.

He told BBC's Spotlight programme: "Paul Quinn was involved in smuggling and criminality and I think everyone accepts that."

Ten years later he stated claims that he tried to smear Mr Quinn were "totally without foundation".

Mr Quinn's parents told the Shattered Lives podcast by Irish Daily Star journalist Paul Healy they had been informed by Gardaí that Mr Murphy had presented for interview in recent weeks.

Stephen Quinn said that Mr Murphy "went to the guards now, just a couple of weeks ago. It took him a while but he went".

His mother Breege added: "They called him in and he went. They've been at him since Paul died to go in from when he said that."

Confirming the meeting took place, Mr Murphy told the Belfast Telegraph: "I can confirm that I have met with the Gardai in relation to the murder of Paul Quinn.

"In light of the ongoing investigation I have no further comment to make at this stage. I would appeal to anyone with information to bring it to the Gardaí or PSNI."

Mr Quinn's murder came more than a decade after the IRA ceasefire and just over two years after it announced an end to its armed campaign.

Six men arrested in July 2008 in a cross-border policing operation were questioned in Monaghan and Antrim.

Among those arrested was a senior south Armagh IRA figure. A further arrest by Gardaí came in 2016, but not one has ever been charged with his killing.

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