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Blow for Baiba lawyer as killer escapes justice

The outspoken Dublin solicitor who represented murdered mother-of-two Baiba Saulite has said he is "bitterly disappointed" to learn that her killer will get off.

Swords-based solicitor John Hennessy was reacting to news that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is not to bring homicide charges against the pathological criminal suspected of her cold-blooded murder on November 19, 2006.

Baiba (28) was shot dead on the doorstep of her home at Holywell Square in Swords, as her two young boys slept in an upstairs bedroom.

Hennessy has been under 24-hour armed protection since his Swords home was fire-bombed in 2006 and a threat on his life uncovered.

Confident

These actions are believed to be a response to his representation of Baiba.

Today, John Hennessy said that protection was still in place and he could not see an end to it in the near future.

The latest decision by the DPP is said to be a major blow to detectives who have worked on the case for more than three years.

Officers were confident that they would eventually charge the man suspected of organising the killing.

The case file has been with the DPP for over 18 months. Garda sources confirmed that the DPP's office has directed that no charges are to be brought against those believed to be responsible for the Latvian woman's death.

"I'm bitterly disappointed really, that's all I can say about it," Hennessy told the Herald.

Since the murder, and the attack on his life, John Hennessy has been a constant voice urging change in the policing and legal systems in Ireland to protect innocent people, even calling for internment to be considered for major criminals.

He had represented tragic Baiba before she was shot dead on her doorstep.

In the past, Hennessy has spoken out and urged the people of Ireland to demand changes in the law that would put hardened criminals off the streets and show them they would not be accepted as part of society.

He was speaking after the shooting of innocent Limerick rugby star Shane Geoghegan in a case of mistaken identity.

John said his anger was "constant and daily" and that it did not just surface when another innocent person was murdered.

"Maybe because of my own situation I have a heightened sense of awareness of all of this, but all I see is these gangs getting worse and worse and they are putting the whole State under a huge difficulty," he told the Herald.

"Their impact is getting greater and greater, and wider and wider, and it has to stop."

John Hennessy ran for Fianna Fail in the last local elections in the Swords area on an anti-crime ticket, and despite not getting a seat he said the experience had persuaded him to keep trying to combat crime from within political circles.

cfeehan@herald.ie


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