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Dad of Omagh victim hits out amid case collapse claims

The father of one of the victims of the 1998 Omagh bomb attack has hit out amid reports of an imminent collapse of the prosecution of a man accused of the murders.

Michael Gallagher, whose son Aiden was among 29 people to be killed in the Real IRA bombing, expressed outrage that families have been kept in the dark.

Michael Gallagher's son Aiden was killed in the 1998 bombing, which inflicted the greatest loss of life of any terror atrocity in the history of the Northern Ireland Troubles. Credit: Paul Faith/PA Archive

The case against 45-year-old County Armagh bricklayer Seamus Daly - who denies involvement in the bombing - will be mentioned at a court in Ballymena later this morning.

Court proceedings are currently subject to reporting restrictions.

Mr Gallagher said he was unhappy that information was circulating about the collapse of the case while the families had not been notified.

"We have been failed once again by the police service, by the prosecution service, by the government and by the criminal justice system," he said.

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'No sufficient grounds' for new Omagh inquiry

Explaining the decision to reject calls for a public inquiry into the 1998 Omagh bombing, Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers said in a statement:

I do not believe there are sufficient grounds to justify a further review or inquiry above and beyond those that have already taken place or are ongoing.

The current investigation by the Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland is the best way to address any outstanding issues relating to the police

investigation of the Omagh attack.

The Government does not believe that selecting a further series of cases forpublic inquiries is the best way to deal with the past in Northern Ireland.I express my sincere sympathies to those who survived the Omagh attack andmy condolences to the families of the 29 people who died.

I hope that the ongoing police investigation will ultimately bring to justice those who committed this horrific crime.

– Theresa Villiers

No public inquiry into Omagh bombing policing

The car bombing, aimed at disrupting the peace process, killed 29 and injured more than 200. Credit: PA

The Government will not launch a public inquiry into the events surrounding the Omagh bombing in 1998, it was announced today.

"After consultation and careful consideration, I have decided not to instigate a public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the bombing in Omagh on 15 August 1998," Secretary of State for Northern Ireland Theresa Villiers said.

"The current investigation by the Office of the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland is the best way to address any outstanding issues relating to the police investigation of the Omagh attack."

The car bomb was an attempt to disrupt the peace process, killing 29 and injuring more than 200.

No criminal convictions have been made in connection with the attack.