'IRA will get away with more killings - nobody is stopping it'
Published 22/10/2015 | 02:30
The mother of a young man who was beaten to death by a south Armagh IRA gang has demanded that Sinn Féin members stop "protecting" her son's killers.
Tuesday marked the eighth anniversary of the murder of Paul Quinn, from Cullyhanna, who was lured into a trap in Co Monaghan by a gang of up to a dozen IRA members.
The 21-year-old, who had challenged the son of a senior IRA figure, was set upon by the gang, who used iron bars and nail-studded cudgels to break every bone in his body.
Last night Breege Quinn accused Sinn Féin of "not having the guts" to apologise to the family over claims that Paul was a criminal.
She told the Irish Independent: "Sinn Féin have always denied that the IRA were involved, but don't they deny everything that the IRA were involved in, both past and present."
On Saturday evening a large number of neighbours and friends joined the Quinn family for Paul's anniversary Mass.
"Those good people have always stood by us despite the climate of fear and intimidation that exists in south Armagh," his father Stephen said.
The Quinns said that they are still grieving the loss of their youngest child, but are determined not to give up their quest for justice and to identify his killers, who they branded as "animals".
"This is the eight anniversary of the day our lives were changed forever, the day that the IRA lured our 21-year-old son to a shed and beat him to death with iron bars and nail-studded cudgels," Mrs Quinn said.
"Paul was murdered because he stood up to the son of an IRA OC and another man who likes to show his authority around here.
"The mother of the IRA man's son told Paul that he would be got along the side of a road in a black plastic bag.
"There is not a day or a night that goes by that I don't think of Paul in that shed, being crucified to death.
"What kind of animals have we walking around south Armagh? Every one of them has a title which will stay with them for the rest of their lives: 'I am a murderer'."
In response to this week's report from the PSNI and MI5 about the continued existence of an IRA army council with links to Sinn Féin, Mrs Quinn said: "I don't need a report to tell me that the IRA still exists.
"In south Armagh and other nationalist areas, we know that too well. I went to Paul's grave to lay flowers and light a few wee candles. My heart's as broken now as it was eight years ago, and I've still not got justice.
"The IRA got away with murdering Paul, they got away with murdering Kevin McGuigan, and they'll get away with murdering more people because nobody in power seems prepared to stop them."