Retired priest asks Justice Minister for inquiry into Fr Niall Molloy case

Fr. Frank McGauran spoke on  Shannonside  News today 27/Jan/2014

Retired priest asks Justice Minister for inquiry into Fr Niall Molloy case

Retired priest calls for public inquiry into killing of Fr Niall Molloy



Retired priest calls for public inquiry into killing of Fr Niall Molloy

Minister told that without inquiry ‘suspicion of cover up and collusion at a high level’ will fester

Fr Niall Molloy who died at Clara Co Offaly in July 1985Fr Niall Molloy who died at Clara Co Offaly in July 1985

Marese McDonagh

A retired parish priest has written to Minister for Justice Alan Shatter calling for an independent commission of inquiry into the “horrendous death” of Fr Niall Molloy at Clara Co Offaly in July 1985.

Co Roscommon-based Fr Frank McGauran (78) who went to school with Fr Molloy, has told the Minister that without a public inquiry “the widespread unease, distrust and suspicion of cover up and collusion at a high level, will inevitably fester and grow deeper”.

Fr Molloy’s badly beaten body was found at Kilcoursey House, the Co Offaly home of Richard and Teresa Flynn, on the day after their daughter’s wedding in July 1985.Richard Flynn was subsequently charged with manslaughter but was acquitted at the direction of the presiding judge Frank Roe, who knew the Flynn family.

Last month Mr Shatter announced the appointment of senior counsel Dominic McGinn to carry out “an independent examination of the report of the Garda Serious Crime Review Team relating to the death of Fr Niall Molloy”.
Cold case
But yesterday Fr McGauran said he did not regard an inquiry into the Garda cold case report as sufficient to answer the many questions surrounding the killing.

“That’s just kicking the can down the road. There is such pressure on him [the Minister] about this case he had to give a little bit, but I cannot see it coming to anything. It is all about the Garda report,” said Fr McGauran.

The retired priest said there was “no doubt in my mind” that there had been a cover up. “When you think about it this is a terrible miscarriage of justice”.

In his letter, Fr McGauran said many speakers at a recent rally in Castlecoote, Co Roscommon, where Fr Molloy was a popular curate, had suggested that Mr Shatter had given a pre-election promise to establish a public inquiry into the case.

“I and many others want to know why you appear to be reneging on that promise. I have not the least doubt that there is no other way of getting to the truth of this grave matter without fear or favour”, the retired priest wrote.

Fr McGauran complimented the Minister for his “outside the box” scrutiny of many issues since taking office. “I sincerely trust that you will do likewise with the Fr Molloy issue that haunts and trouble me and many others throughout Ireland,” he wrote.

Asked to comment on the priest’s letter, a spokeswoman referred to the Minister’s recent statement to the Dáil about the appointment of a senior counsel to review the report of the Garda Serious Crime Review Team.

After receiving this Garda “cold case” report the Director of Public Prosecutions determined that there would be no further prosecutions in the case.

The Minister told the Dáil that the new review by senior counsel will identify whether any form of further inquiry, aside from the criminal investigation, would be warranted in the public interest.

Paul Williams wrote in 2010

in today’s article Paul William’s writes
” In return for gardai dropping the charges against him ( John Traynor). Cahill would hand over the highly sensitive file on the murder of Roscommon priest Fr. Niall Molloy”
“Ironically, the return of the Molloy file may now help the garda Cold Case Unit to re-open the investigation.”

Fr Niall Molloy and the Church

Intersesting  that members of the Church are now being exposed for covering up crimes.
When the Parish priest of Clara reported Niall’s death to the Police he asked them to keep it quiet.
Then Cardinal O’Fiaich made numerous phone calls to have the case suppressed.
O’Fiaich then lied to a member of my family in a letter saying he was only “vaguely aware of Niall’s death at the time”.
He started an elaborate cover up from day one. the Church threatened us with legal action when we asked them questions and the final insult was when they offered a blank cheque to stop us fighting to clear Niall’s reputation.

When the parish priest of Clara was called to give evidence……he refused. He refused to give evidence about the events during the number of hours he was in Kilcoursey. He did so on the grounds of a legal precedent  Cook V Carroll 1945.

Only a few months ago a Senator told a Public meeting in Castlecoote

“That alone, because as far as I’m concerned Father (comments directed towards Fr O’Neill) it was the judiciary and the hierarchy that were involved in this case as opposed to politicians, which it is alleged. Politicians were not involved to my knowledge and I know both sides, because Fine Gael were in power at the time [… inaudible …] the hierarchy were involved and the Bishop of Meath did say ‘Can we hush this up?’. That’s a fact and you know that too Father. But they did hush it up.”

Fr. Molloy. Cold Case Unit – 5th Anniversary

Just for the record it is five years, this month, since I first made contact with a detective from the Cold Case Unit.

I was informed in Sept 2009 that Niall’s case “was not currently under review”

It was only in Feb 2010 when I informed the Unit, by email, that I had meetings with Garda Ombudsman’s Office that things started to happen. Within Hours of sending my email I was contacted by phone by a senior member of the Cold Case unit to arrange a meeting for the following Friday.

So here we are after five years of work by the elite squad of our National Police Force.



P.S. My dealing with the Garda Commissioners Office is worthy of a separate post on here. I called into their  Office the day after they were officially launched my Minister McDowell.