Saturday 23 February 2019

Seven jailed over Tunisian attacks which killed 60 - including three Irish tourists

Laurence and Martina Hayes
Laurence and Martina Hayes
Victim: Lorna Carty was shot dead
Kathy Armstrong

Kathy Armstrong

Seven people have been jailed for life over two separate attacks in Tunisia that killed 60 people in 2015 - including three Irish tourists.

Samir Ben Amor, a lawyer for one of the 44 defendants, said the verdicts were handed down over the deadly attack against the country's famous Bardo Museum and a massacre at the popular Imperial Marhaba Hotel at Port El Kantaoui in Sousse.

He said other defendants received jail terms ranging from 16 years to six months, while charges against 27 of the suspects were dismissed.

No-one received the maximum penalty of capital punishment.

A lone Isil gunman shot dead Athlone couple Martina and Laurence Hayes and County Meath nurse Lorna Carty during the hotel massacre on June 26 2015 that claimed 38 lives.

Ms Carty's husband Declan has previously spoken about his ordeal and looking for his wife in the aftermath of the shooting.

Speaking on RTE's The Late Late Show last year, he said: "It went from a holiday resort to a war zone.

"We went down to the reception area and there were people gathering there at this stage.

Victim: Lorna Carty was shot dead
Victim: Lorna Carty was shot dead

"I knew if Lorna could have been there at all she would have been there because she would have been worried about me with the heart condition I have and I knew if she was mobile at all, she would have come looking for me.

"I waited maybe ten minutes or so and I just put down my head and said I’m going and I headed out for the beach...

"I went down and lifted the towel and it was Lorna and she had been shot in the chest, so she was just lying in the sun, oblivious to it all and there was a few sun beds just around blocking the area with people taking photographs, so there wasn’t even peace that you could grieve in."

With additional reporting from the Press Association

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