THE garda colleague of slain detective Adrian Donoghue was back at Dundalk station today providing vital information in the investigation to help bring the killers to justice.
After laying a wreath and signing the book of condolences, the minister went inside for private talks with Dt Garda Ryan, Assistant Commissioner Kieran Kenny, Chief Superintendent Pat McGee and other senior members of the force.
He emerged some time later, saying he had been very impressed by Dt Gda Ryan's courage in returning to work and said he was obviously "still upset" but very focused at bringing to justice those responsible for the "very callous and barbaric murder."
The Minister said Dt Ryan was "as determined as everybody else" that those who conducted this horrific murder and who were completely obsessed with their own financial gain would be caught.
And he said Dt Ryan was to be "greatly admired" for being in the station today providing all the assistance he could to his colleagues.
Asked about concern over cuts within the force, Mr Shatter said "let's not get deflected".
"Garda Donoghue lost his life because bad people intent on murder and mayhem and robbery conducted themselves in the manner we know. There's no issue today of relevance to resources or garda stations. This is nothing to do with resources. This is to do with people who have no respect for human life intent on personal financial gain and prepared to take life."
He said members of gardai were "absolutely determined" to bring Dt Donoghue's killers to justice and were focused on the investigation.
And the Minister said he had "absolute confidence that those responsible will end up before our courts.
Meanwhile work is still going on in relation to the investigation of the car foud burned out in forest land across the border. The minister said the likelihood is that this was the car involved in the incident and there was still "work to be done in that context."
A very focused investigation was taking place with gardai and the SPNI working together, he said.
He said it was important that nobody "jumped to conclusions" over who had carried out the murder. No one is approaching this with a closed mind and nobody should jump to conclusions, he said.