Fight for O'Hagan justice continues despite threats

Colleagues of journalist Martin O’Hagan, the Sunday World reporter shot dead seven years ago, have vowed to continue the fight to bring his killers to justice.

Jim McDowell, the Sunday World’s Northern Ireland editor, said the paper was ‘doing everything we have to do to track down Martin’s killers”, including working with the Police Service of Northern Ireland and paramilitary groups.

A plaque showing NUJ activist O’Hagan carrying a banner on a union event was recommemorated at an event in Belfast’s Linen Hall Library last week, where friends and colleagues told stories of working with him.

O’Hagan was killed in Lurgan, County Armagh, aged 51 in September 2001. He was the first journalist to die since the Troubles began in 1969.

An inquest in December 2006 heard that O’Hagan (pictured) was investigating drug dealing among a Loyalist paramilitary gang. No one has ever been charged in connection with his death.

McDowell said the paper’s staff had received various death threats from hostile groups but said this would not deter his fight.

‘I would like them to know that it doesn’t stop with Martin’s death. We are getting the death threats but we will continue to do our job,’he said.

‘Nothing will stop us and that is essentially the legacy of Martin O’Hagan that we are proud to continue.”

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