Page last updated at 13:37 GMT, Tuesday, 15 April 2008 14:37 UK

Policemen 'protected' IRA killer

Constable John Larmour was shot dead in 1988
Constable John Larmour was shot dead in 1988

Members of RUC Special Branch and other senior police officers have been accused of protecting an IRA gunman who killed an off-duty RUC officer.

The claim has been made by the son of Constable John Larmour who was shot dead in Belfast in October 1988.

A Police Ombudsman's report said some information was withheld from detectives investigating the murder.

Gavin Larmour said some officers knew who the killer was but did not pass it on possibly because he was an informer.

Mr Larmour, 42, was shot dead by the IRA in an ice cream parlour on the Lisburn Road.

He had been helping his brother, who owned the business but was on holiday in Spain.

Police Ombudsman Al Hutchinson speaking to Vincent Kearney

The Police Ombudsman's Office has upheld a complaint by Gavin Larmour that the police did not carry out a proper investigation. In a report published on Tuesday, Al Hutchinson also said that not all information available to the police was given to the detectives trying to find the killer.

Gavin Larmour said the report had confirmed his worst fears.

He said: "It has been confirmed that there is intelligence that was not passed on or has been ignored.

"There are other lines of inquiry that were either not opened or not finalised, and basically the whole investigation from start to finish has been proven now to have been a farce."

He has now called for the police to launch a new investigation into his father's murder.

DUP assembly member Ian Paisley Jnr said the police should reopen the investigation into Mr Larmour's murder.

"It only serves to fuel the view that there was something very serious to hide," he said.

"That is such a serious allegation, the police must reopen that case and with expedition find the murderer and get to the bottom of this case, either to allay the fears that have been put about or, indeed, prove those fears."

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