Published date23 July 2022
Publication titleIrish Times (Dublin, Ireland)
Veronica Guerin

Died, aged 37, on June 26th, 1996 The respected Sunday Independent crime journalist was fatally shot six times as she waited at the Newlands Cross traffic lights on Naas Road in west Dublin. She had previously been shot in the leg, assaulted, threatened, intimidated and had shots fired at the house she shared with her husband and young son, as a result of her reporting on the activities of criminal gangs. More than 200 arrests and 39 convictions arose from the investigation into her death, which was described by Bertie Ahern, who would become taoiseach the following year, as an attack on democracy. Paul Ward, a 32-year-old, was found guilty of her murder in November 1998, but this was overturned on appeal. John Gilligan was tried and acquitted. To this day the only person behind bars for her murder is Brian Meehan. JENNIFER O'CONNELL

Fiona Pender

Last seen, aged 25, on August 23rd, 1996

Vivacious, caring Fiona Pender had returned from London a few months earlier to live in Tullamore, Co Offaly when she disappeared from home. She was seven months pregnant. She was last seen early in the morning of August 23rd, 1996, at her flat on Church Street in the town. Afterwards, friends recalled that she had just wanted a secure home for herself and her baby. The Garda last year issued a renewed appeal for information on the 25th anniversary of her disappearance. Raonaid Murray

Died, aged 17, on September 4th, 1999 Teenager Raonaid Murray left Scott's pub in Dún Laoghaire, Co Dublin planning to walk home to Glenageary, change her clothes, and rejoin her friends in a nightclub later. She never made it. She was stabbed multiple times in a laneway by a person armed with a knife. She managed to walk almost 100 yards towards home before she collapsed and died. Her body was found by her older sister. No motive has ever been established and there is no prime suspect. Her funeral in 1999 heard how she wanted to become a writer, had plans to repeat her Leaving Certificate and how "all the life, talent and personality" that had been maturing in her had been brutally stolen. A Garda appeal on the anniversary of her death in September 2021 said that extensive lines of inquiry are still being pursued.

Sophie Toscan du Plantier

Died, aged 39, on December 22nd, 1996

The French documentary maker Sophie Toscan du Plantier was battered to death in west Cork in the days before Christmas 1996. Ian Bailey, who has always maintained his innocence, was found guilty in France of her murder in absentia. Several people who gave Garda statements at the time have recently been reinterviewed. Deirdre Jacob

Last seen, aged 18, on July 28th, 1998 Student teacher Deirdre Jacob was almost home from running errands in Newbridge, Co Kildare when she disappeared on a Tuesday afternoon in the summer. In 2018, gardaí upgraded her disappearance to a murder investigation, following a review by the Serious Crime Review Team and new information. Convicted rapist Larry Murphy has been identified as a "person of interest" but the latest investigative file sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions had not resulted in any charges against him. A...

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