Police Ombudsman to investigate the murder of civilian, Jim Murphy.
Press release from Joan Corrigan, niece of the victim: The Office of the Police Ombudsman (OPONI) is to investigate the murder of Jim Murphy, a Fermanagh civilian who was murdered on the 24th April 1974 near Derrylin, Co. Fermanagh.
OPONI has recently said that his case has been “formally accepted” and it “scored highly ”in the prioritization phase of assessment.
A niece of the victim raised a formal complaint with the Office of the Police Ombudsman (OPONI) in 2022, due to the failures of historic police investigations, including those by Royal Ulster Constabulary and Historical Enquiries Team.
Jim Murphy owned a garage in an isolated area called Corraveigha, Derrylin when he was shot dead, and there is an strong suspicion from many quarters that British armed forces were involved as has been proven in other terrible cases in the area at the time.
These fears were compounded by a seriously flawed police investigation.
A letter claiming to be from the UFF was sent to the Fermanagh Herald in 1974 admitting responsibility for the murder.
Joan Corrigan, Jim's Niece
"I feel encouraged that I have achieved this small step towards justice for a wonderful man so loved by so many."
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OPONI informed the victim’s niece that his case would not be able to commence investigation until April 2027 at the earliest, due to a lack of resources and a backlog of 238 legacy cases.
Jim Murphy’s niece, Joan Corrigan said:
“My uncle Jim was a quiet, well-known and well-respected man, much loved by his family and a respected member of the local community in Derrylin. He was a member of Fermanagh Civil Rights Association and worked for basic human rights."
"Whilst I welcome an investigation by the Office of the Police Ombudsman, it is disgraceful that the date given in 2027. Next year will see the 50th anniversary of my uncle Jim’s murder and Jim will still be denied any measure of justice.”
Paper Trail, a charity that works with victims and survivors of the conflict, sourced newspaper reports and secret British Army files from the National Archives in London relating to the murder.
Ciarán MacAirt of Paper Trail said:
“Justice delayed is justice denied and it is shameful that any family has to wait so long for a proper investigation to commence. Whist the British authorities are starving OPONI of resources to investigate legacy cases, the Tories are legislating their pernicious Legacy Bill which will deny families like the victim’s equal access to due process of the law."
Miss Corrigan felt strongly that, as Jim himself was a campaigner for truth and justice, “He deserved my efforts to bring attention to this travesty. Despite the current circumstances, I feel encouraged that I have achieved this small step towards justice for a wonderful man so loved by so many."