Northern Irish police investigate republican link to double murder

Couple found dead at their home in Craigavon, Co Armagh, a stronghold of Continuity IRA

Detectives in Northern Ireland are investigating a republican dissident link to the murder of a couple in Co Armagh.

The man and woman were found dead at their home on the Legahory housing estate in Craigavon , the Police Service of Northern Ireland said. The pair both had gunshot wounds to the head and had been discovered by their son, the police spokesman said.

It is understood the male victim had been known to police for some time over criminal activities and in the past had been forcibly expelled from another part of Co.Armagh by the Provisional IRA several years ago.

The Craigavon/North Armagh area is known to be a stronghold of the Continuity IRA - one of three republican organisations opposed to the power sharing settlement. All three republican dissident movements have been involved in a wave of so called "punishment attacks" on politically uninvolved criminals within nationalist communities as a means of building popular support.

Local SDLP councillor for the area Michael McGoldrick condemned those responsible for the double-murder. He said: "The discovery of two dead bodies in a house in Legahory in Craigavon has stunned everyone in the local community.

"News that the police are treating the deaths as murder will compound the sense of shock and disbelief felt by residents in the area.

"My immediate thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of the man and women who have lost their lives.

"I would appeal to anyone with any information to contact the PSNI immediately."


Henry McDonald, Ireland correspondent

The GuardianTramp

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