Briton claims he was 'framed' for Iraq murders

British security guard who shot dead two colleagues in Iraq in 2009 has claimed he was framed for the murders in footage obtained exclusively by ITV News.

Danny Fitzsimons was working for a private security firm in Baghdad's Green Zone when he shot dead Briton Paul McGuigan and Australian Darren Hoare. Today, he is serving a 20-year prison sentence for their murders.

Speaking from his prison in Iraq, Fitzsimons admits he pulled the trigger but claims it was self-defence.

ITV News Correspondent Martin Geissler reports:

Timeline of Danny Fitzsimons' conviction:

  • May 2008: Fitzsimons diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after tours of Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq
  • 7 May 2008: G4S completes acquisition of Armour Group, which will go on to employ Fitzsimons
  • January 2009: A 'status of forces' agreement between the US and Iraq expires ending the immunity of foreigners operating in the country
  • August 2009: Fitzsimons is hired by ArmourGroup and sent to Iraq. Some 36 hours later he shoots dead two fellow contractors after an alleged drunken brawl.
  • December 2010: Undergoes mental health assessments in Iraq
  • February 2011: Sentenced to life imprisonment in Iraq with a minimum of 20 years
Danny Fitzsimons shot Briton Paul McGuigan.
Danny Fitzsimons shot Briton Paul McGuigan.

The mother of a British security guard Paul McGuigan said she does not have any sympathy for her son's killer.

Corinne Boyd-Russell was shown footage obtained by ITV News of Fitzsimons in his Iraqi prison in which he acknowledges he has "robbed" her of a son.

But Corinne said he came across as "arrogant" in the video and that he "showed no remorse whatsoever".

Danny Fitzsimons shot Australian Darren Hoare.
Danny Fitzsimons shot Australian Darren Hoare.

Mrs Boyd-Russell also criticized the security firm who employed Fitzsimons and said he should not have been hired given his history of post-traumatic stress syndrome and the fact that he was charged with a crime in the UK.

Security firm G4S defended their decision to send Danny Fitzsimons to Iraq, saying they were supplied documents which showed he was fit to work.

We received documents which certified that Mr Fitzsimons was fit to work in Iraq.

It subsequently came to light one of those documents was forged.

Mr Fitzsimons was declared fit to stand trial and was found solely responsible for the killings of Paul and Darren.

We've seen no formal document which proves he was suffering from PTSD.