Tracing bomb parts key to Ronan Kerr murder case, PSNI says
Police call on community to help solve 2011 car-bomb killing of officer in Omagh
An image of murdered PSNI constable Ronan Kerr is held during a rally for peace held in Omagh on April 10th, 2011. Photograph: The Irish Times
Detectives investigating the murder of Constable Ronan Kerr in Northern Ireland believe tracing bomb parts may hold the key to jailing his killers.
The PSNI officer (25) was killed by a booby-trap car bomb in Omagh, Co Tyrone, on April 2nd, 2011.
Despite the largest investigation in the force’s history, charges are yet to be brought over the murder, and investigators are appealing to the community to provide what they hope could be the vital clue.
Det Chief Insp John Caldwell said: “Detectives have made a significant amount of progress in the investigation into the murder of Ronan, however we are particularly interested in the origin of some of the component parts of the bomb, and how they were sourced.
“We have already made good progress in tracking how the terrorists came into possession of these parts, as well as establishing their relationship with a local crime gang in the Omagh area.
“However, I believe there are still potential witnesses who may be able to assist police in this line of enquiry.
“The key to putting people before a court charged with Ronan’s murder lies with local communities in Omagh and east Tyrone.”
Police said more than 15,500 people have featured in the investigation, with more than 8,200 items seized and 122 searches conducted of houses, vehicles and land.
Some 19 arrests have been made and one person has been jailed for offences connected to the investigation.
Mr Caldwell added: “Ronan’s family deserve to see his terrorist murderers behind bars where they belong. They remain as devastated as they were when he was killed nearly seven years ago.
“This has been a lengthy and complicated investigation incorporating several linked incidents including attempts to murder other police officers, a bomb attack, arms finds and armed robberies.
“There is significant potential to bring other individuals before the courts and we need people in the communities of Omagh and east Tyrone to come forward with anything they know, particularly about the origin and sourcing of the component parts of the bomb,” Mr Caldwell said.
“I would urge those people who know who was involved in the events and activities surrounding Ronan’s murder to come forward.”–PA