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I've betrayed my Sophie, says mother

THE mother of murdered French woman Sophie Toscan du Plantier has been forced to betray her daughter's lifelong wish for privacy in the hope it will help catch her killer.

Sophie (39) was killed in Schull, Co Cork, in December 1996, and nobody has been prosecuted for her murder.

Her mother, Marguerite Bouniol, said Sophie had always craved privacy despite being married to acclaimed film producer Daniel Toscan du Plantier.

But she wrote in a preface to a new book: "At each new development . . . I was obliged to betray my daughter. Married to a public man, Sophie avoided journalists. For 16 years, I have broken this rule which she imposed.

"I have betrayed this wish of my daughter so that justice would be done to her, in a vain and cruel effort which has led to nothing."


Ms Bouniol, who is in her 80s, made the comments in the preface to L'affaire Sophie Toscan du Plantier, Un Deni de Justice (A Denial of Justice).

The book reinvestigates the murder at Sophie's holiday home in West Cork in an attempt to bring her killer to justice.

Ms Bouniol wrote that her daughter's murder changed her life irrevocably, and she now has feelings of "hatred" for the individual who took Sophie away from her.

"Up until then (the murder), I was unaware of violence until it befell my daughter, and I was unaware of hatred before it imposed itself upon me when I was haunted by the thought of the last thing Sophie saw – the mad eyes of a man who smashed a concrete block down on her face," she wrote.

English former journalist Ian Bailey, who was twice arrested for questioning, has always denied having any involvement in her death.

He has successfully fought extradition to France, and in 2012 the DPP completely demolished the case against him.