Omagh bomb lawyers target PIRA killers

Lawyers behind the successful civil court case over the Omagh bomb are now launching a private case centring on the three young Scottish soldiers killed in 1971.

Saturday, 21st January 2017, 4:41 pm
Updated Saturday, 21st January 2017, 4:47 pm
David McCaughey (cousin of Dougald McCaughey) at the monument for the three Scottish soldiers murdered in the IRA honeytrap attack in 1971. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

Fusiliers Dougald McCaughey (23), John McCaig (17) and Joseph McCaig (18) were drinking in Belfast when IRA men befriended them and invited them to meet some girls at a party.

They were then taken to the outskirts of Belfast and shot in the head.

It was the first time the IRA targeted off-duty soldiers, causing tens of thousands to take the streets in protest.

Nobody has stood trial for the murders.

David McCaughey, a cousin of Dougald McCaughey, said: “This is a scar in my family that has never healed.

“I made promises to family that are no longer living that I would never let these boys be forgotten, I will never break that promise.

“John, Joseph and Dougald did not deserve what happened to them, they were just three young innocent boys.

“They do deserve our support and efforts to fight for justice on their behalf.”

Matthew Jury and Jason McCue of London-based McCue & Partners LLP previously made international headlines with their successful civil action against individuals over responsibility for the Omagh bomb (which happened in the absence of suspects being criminally convicted).

Mr Jury said the families of the Scottish soldiers are calling for public support to raise funds for this action.

He said of the individuals thought to have been involved in the Scottish soldiers’ case: “Their identities are known to the police and security services.

“There has only ever been one attempt to extradite them. Ireland refused the request on the grounds that the murders were ‘political not criminal’. No action has been taken since.”

He added: “If the state won’t act then they [the families] must, and will, take any necessary and appropriate legal action, including private criminal or civil prosecutions.”

DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson said far too few terrorists have been prosecuted, adding: “I am delighted that the families of British soldiers murdered by the IRA are launching a campaign to ensure their killers are brought to justice.”

UUP MP Tom Elliott said there is major frustration among terror victims.

“I fully understand and accept that the families of these soldiers should seek justice for their loved ones,” he said.

UUP MLA and former RIR Capt Doug Beattie also backed the families, adding that the need to find the murderers is “in itself an indictment of the unbalanced justice system in Northern Ireland”.

:: Cheques payable to the ‘The Three Scottish Soldiers Fund’ can be sent c/o McCue & Partners LLP, Fourth Floor, 158 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 9TR