John Downey handed himself in to Letterkenny Garda Station on Friday 11 October in order to be extradited to Northern Ireland where he was remanded in custody and charged with the murders of two Ulster Defence Regiment soldiers in 1972. Mr Downey appeared in Omagh magistrates’ court on Saturday where bail was refused on the grounds that Mr Downey might fail to surrender to custody.
Mr Downey is accused of killing Lance Corporal Alfred Johnston and Private James Eames who both died when a device exploded inside a car that they were checking in Enniskillen in 1972. He was arrested at his home in Donegal in October of last year under a European Arrest Warrant issued by the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
In March of this year, the High Court granted leave to appeal against the order of extradition. The appeal was dismissed in July and leave to appeal to the Supreme Court was sought. On 9 October the Supreme Court directed extradition.
In 2013, Mr Downey was charged with the murders of four Royal Household Cavalrymen in a bomb attach in Hyde Park in 1982. The trial at the Old Bailey collapsed following the revelation that he had received assurances from former Prime Minister Tony Blair’s government that he was not actively wanted by the authorities.
Mr Downey will appear again in court on 25 October.
Categories: Northern Ireland, United Kingdom