Saturday 1 October 2016

'If DJ has information he should go to gardaí' - missing Philip Cairns' mum

Conor Feehan and Laura Larkin

Published 18/07/2016 | 02:30

Main: Philip Cairns; Insets: Alice Cairns, mother of Philip; Students arrive back to Coláiste Éanna on the Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham, after the mid-term break of October 1986; The lane
where Philip’s bag was found
Main: Philip Cairns; Insets: Alice Cairns, mother of Philip; Students arrive back to Coláiste Éanna on the Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham, after the mid-term break of October 1986; The lane where Philip’s bag was found

THE mum of missing schoolboy Philip Cairns has urged broadcaster Gareth O’Callaghan to go to gardai with information he says he has received about the disappearance of her son.

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Gareth O’Callaghan, who hosts a show on 4FM and previously worked for 2fm, told the Herald that he has been piecing together a new theory on the disappearance of schoolboy Philip Cairns (13) in 1986.

He claims this new theory is based on information people have been passing onto him via social media.

He has not gone to gardai with this information, and he says he will only do so if he gets agreement from those who have been in touch.

Students arrive back to Coláiste Éanna on the Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham, after the mid-term break of October 1986. NPA/Independent collection
Students arrive back to Coláiste Éanna on the Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham, after the mid-term break of October 1986. NPA/Independent collection

However, he has publicly made a number of allegations in relation to the disappearance.

Speaking from her home in Ballyroan, Rathfarnham, Philip’s mother Alice Cairns urged anybody with information regarding her son to go to that gardai.

A Garda on duty at the laneway on Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham from where 13 year old schoolboy Philip Cairns went missing on the afternoon of 23 October 1986. NPA/Independent collection
A Garda on duty at the laneway on Ballyroan Road, Rathfarnham from where 13 year old schoolboy Philip Cairns went missing on the afternoon of 23 October 1986. NPA/Independent collection

“I would say that if anyone had any information in relation to Philip they should go to the Gardai, and if Gareth O’Callaghan has information he should bring it to gardai too,” she said.

The mystery of what happened to the young school boy who disappeared during his lunch hour has been the subject of a three decade long garda investigation.

Philip Cairns went missing on October 23, 1986, after leaving his home after lunch to return to school for the afternoon. He had just begun secondary school the previous month
Philip Cairns went missing on October 23, 1986, after leaving his home after lunch to return to school for the afternoon. He had just begun secondary school the previous month

Mr O’Callaghan said he has been contacted by a “number of people” who have given him information about the disappearance of Philip – but did not say how many people contacted him about the case.

“I don’t want to divulge much about the information that is coming forward because it’s private – some of it is very detailed. These are people who clearly have held back for a very long time,” he said.

“Where do I take it? I don’t know because it has been given to me on strict guarantee that it’s confidential.

“I think eventually, obviously there is nowhere else to bring it but I think it’s got to be information that will convince the gardai to open a new line of investigation.”

Mr O’Callaghan said he and Philip are distantly related by having the same great grandfather, but Mrs Cairns said she has never met him.

Philip vanished after leaving his home to return to school during his lunch hour on October 23. He had only started secondary school the previous month. Despite extensive searches of the area and other areas in Dublin no trace of the youngster was ever found.

A new lead linking his disappearance to the paedophile radio DJ Eamonn Cooke has given the ongoing investigation into his death a new direction in recent weeks, but it has not been established if Cooke was behind his disappearance.

Irish Independent

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