THE GOOD SAMARITAN BOMBING: JUDICIAL REVIEW OF ATTORNEY GENERAL REFUSED
KRW LAW LLP is representing the family of Eugene (Sean) Dalton, killed in The Good Samaritan Bombing in Derry on 31 August 1988. Last year the High Court in Belfast, Mr Justice Maguire granted leave to challenge the decision of the Attorney-General for Northern Ireland in his refusal to direct a new inquest into the murder of Mr Dalton. Today in the High Court the decision making process of the Attorney General in this matter was upheld by Mr Justice Deeny.
This morning, the High Court dismissed the challenge taken by Eugene Dalton’s daughter Dorothy Johnston, of the refusal by the Attorney General to direct a fresh inquest into Mr Dalton’s death, in circumstances which raise serious and grave concerns about the role and knowledge of police officers in preventing the murder of an innocent pensioner.
While the family of Eugene Dalton and KRW LAW LLP are obviously disappointed with the judgment, we welcome the level of scrutiny which the Court engaged in examining the process of decision making by the Attorney General, whose office has a number of similar applications before it.
We are however disappointed in the extent of Court’s focus on perpetrators, and that the same focus was not applied to the role of the police when, as in this case, police involvement and knowledge raise grave concerns.
We remain convinced that the focus of any human rights compliant investigation should begin and end with accountability, whether that be of the police or otherwise, and that all Conflict related Legacy matters should be investigated with a view to disclosing the fullest possible truth. With this in mind, KRW LAW LLP on behalf of the Dalton family will consider an appeal of the judgment of the High Court to the Court of Appeal to ensure that the principle of accountability is upheld to the furthest possible extent, and that a family grieving the loss of a beloved father for 30 years may finally find some answers.