London attack victim suffered from MS


A DERRYMAN who was left to die of thirst by raiders at his London flat suffered from multiple sclerosis, his brother has revealed.

Mr Alan Holmes (53) died after being tied to his bed for 10 days by thieves who forced him to reveal his bank PIN numbers.

Last night his younger brother, Mr Ken Holmes, a Northern Ireland businessman, said that Alan would have been unable to fight 9ff his attackers.

Mr Holmes worked as an administrator in Kentish Town Police Station, north London, where officers are said to be devastated by his ordeal.

His brother Ken, who lives two miles outside Derry, described his death as horrific.

"Alan was first diagnosed as suffering from multiple sclerosis five years ago. His condition was getting steadily worse and it was good of the police to keep him on because they could possibly have laid him off due to his condition," he said.

He stressed that his brother would have been unable to put up much resistance against his attackers. "It is a cliche, but Alan really was one of those people who wouldn't harm a soul."

Mr Holmes had lived in London for 30 years but had returned every Christmas until the death of his mother three years ago.

Police discovered him at his Kentish Town flat on January 3rd. He was seriously ill and had suffered injuries caused by having his limbs tightly tied. He died in hospital the following day.

It is understood that Mr Holmes, who was suffering from severe dehydration, was able to pass on some information to the police about his ordeal.

Police initially kept a news blackout on the case when an operation was launched to catch the attackers, but they decided to go public when the operation failed. Two men said by police to be in their mid 20s, were arrested yesterday in Kentish Town. They were being questioned last night.

Mr Holmes had been employed with the police in Kentish Town for the past decade. There, he Coordinated the movements of the police fleet.