Saturday 23 November 2019

'There's always suspicion that police aren't doing everything they can' - Legal team for murdered Danielle raises questions

Danielle McLaughlin meets local children on her travels
Danielle McLaughlin meets local children on her travels
Danielle McLaughlin was found dead in Canacona, a popular tourist area in the south of Goa
Vigil in home town Buncrana
Catherine Devine

Catherine Devine

A legal representative for murdered Irish backpacker Danielle McLaughlin has said there is always suspicion that foreign police "aren't doing everything they can" as the family appeal for more evidence.

Derry solicitor Des Doherty spoke to RTÉ's Morning Ireland urging anyone with potential information to come forward.

"Before the Easter break, I spoke to the Chief Investigating Officer in India and he assured me at that point, subject to any further evidence that comes to light, that they have one individual that they are focusing on, he has been charged and they are not looking for anyone else at this stage."

Danielle McLaughlin (28) was raped and killed in Goa on the west coast of India on March 13.

Ms McLaughlin, who was from Buncrana but had lived in Liverpool before travelling overseas, had been celebrating Holi, a Hindu spring festival, in Palolem, a coastal village in Goa.

She left the village late at night and her naked body was found in a nearby field the next day with injuries to her head and face.

Mr Doherty re-enforced the family's appeal for video and photographic evidence that may have been taken in India.

"There has been a lot of innuendo and rumour and suspicion about other individuals being involved in this matter and one of the things that we noticed in respect to the video footage is that so many people had their phone on them at the time, even while dancing. There is evidence out there. This is an international appeal to ask everyone to send us their footage so we can identify everyone."

The Derry solicitor said that there is always "some suspicion" when dealing with foreign authorities.

"I have to have confidence in the system. It's not for me to criticise the authorities of another country.

"We have to do our best. There's always a suspicion that police aren't doing everything they can do but you tend to find that other people will be willing to co-operate and assist family members of the victim.

"If we can get any information, documents, photographic or video evidence then of course we will share that with the appropriate authorities."

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