Man (56) arrested in connection with murder of Newry man Eamon Collins | Latest Newry News, Newry Sport and Newry Business for Newry City

Man (56) arrested in connection with murder of Newry man Eamon Collins

Detectives from Serious Crime Branch investigating the murder of Eamon Collins in Newry 15 years ago have arrested a 56 year old man in the County Armagh area this morning.

The former Provisional IRA man was murdered on Doran’s Hill close to Barcroft

The suspect has been taken to Antrim police station for questioning.

It comes just a week after police arrested a 42 year old man and a 55 year old man in Newry, both of who were later released unconditionally.

Eamon Collins was a former member of the Newry branch of the Provisional IRA, where he carried out the role of ‘Intelligence Officer’.

After he became disillusioned with the organisation he became one of its harshest critics, going on TV dismissing the IRA’s methods and strategy. The married father of four also turned super grass but later retracted his statements after receiving death threats.

His outspoken criticism of the IRA culminated in a tell-all book called ‘Killing Rage’ where Collins spoke in depth of his involvement in murders and attempted murders in the local area.

The 45 year old paid dearly for his criticisms. On 27th January 1999 he was out walking his dog in the early morning on the Doran’s Hill area of the city.

He was subsequently knocked down, beaten and stabbed beyond recognition in what a Coroner described in 2007 as a ‘brutal, horrific and grotesque murder’.

Speaking to Newry Times, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Montgomery, from Serious Crime Branch, said, “I would ask those with information about Mr Collins’ murder, particularly those in the Barcroft estate, to think again about the awfulness of what happened and about the Collins family.

Eamon Collins was murdered in 1999 in Newry

He added, “It is never too late to come forward. Anyone with information can contact detectives on 02890 700 727 or 07585 228 283. Alternatively, people who do not want to provide their personal details can phone the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

Back in January 2014 murder detectives revealed they had made a DNA breakthrough in the unsolved case and made a fresh appeal for information.

Speaking back in February, Detective Inspector Peter Montgomery, from the PSNI’s serious crime branch, said, “Eamon Collins had a well-publicised past but he was a husband and a father and his life was taken in the most brutal and barbaric manner.

“We have a DNA profile from the scene so we are not without hope that one of the killer gang will be identified through the course of police inquiries.

He added, “It is 15 years since Eamon Collins was murdered. Much has happened in the intervening years in terms of politics, policing and allegiances.”

More on this story:

Two men arrested in connection with ‘brutal and barbaric’ Newry murder

Police arrest man in connection with ‘horrific and grotesque’ Newry murder

Letters to the Editor, ‘Newry Council double standards over Gerry Adams letter of concern’

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