'not forgotten' | 

Brother of man shot dead 20 years ago says they will ‘never give up’ looking for justice

Sean Poland (39) who had also worked as a block-layer, was shot dead in a botched aggravated robbery on New Year’s Eve, 2002

David RaleighSunday World

The brother of a second-hand car dealer gunned down at his home in Co Clare, 20 years ago, has said that his family will “never give up” their hope that his slain sibling’s killers will be brought to justice.

Sean Poland (39) who had also worked as a block-layer, was shot dead in a botched aggravated robbery on New Year’s Eve, 2002, at his home in Blackwater, Ardnacrusha, situated close to the south east Clare - Limerick border.

Gardai suspect criminals from Limerick City were behind the killing although no one has ever been charged in relation to the murder.

Speaking as the 20th anniversary of his brother’s death approached, Sean Poland’s brother Ray Poland said: “We will never give up looking for justice, and as long as I’m alive, I will never give up.

“Hopefully, sooner rather than later, we will get a result in the investigation and get closure to this, before we are all gone,” added Mr Poland.

Appealing directly to those with information about his brother’s murder, he said: “We know someone has information out there, hopefully they are still alive, please come forward and give us some help, give the gardaí some help, give us some closure.”

Mr Poland (57) said the family were pleased that gardaí agreed to their request for them to re-appeal for information about the killing this Friday.

“I’m delighted he is not forgotten, the investigation is still alive, and hopefully something might come out of this - twenty years is a long time,” added Mr Poland.

Gardai have made a number of arrests down through the years but no one has been charged.

A statement released by gardaí read: “Gardaí at Mayorstone Garda station (Limerick) are re-appealing for information in relation to the murder of 39 year old Sean Poland in his home in Blackwater, Ardnacrusha, Co. Clare on 31st December, 2002.”

“Sean was out socialising with his partner at the Round House Pub, High Street, Limerick, celebrating New Year’s Eve. They left the pub just after 11pm and headed home.

“Sean’s partner set a fire in the living room while Sean made some food in the kitchen. As they were settling in for the night, the doorbell rang. Sean went to answer the door thinking it was neighbours calling to wish them a Happy New Year.

“As Sean opened the front door, four masked and armed raiders rushed through the door. Two of the raiders ran towards the living room and grabbed Sean’s partner. They ordered her to kneel on the floor and told her to put her hands behind her back. The raiders demanded to know where the money was.”

“She heard a shot coming from the hallway, the raiders tied her hands together with a cable from the television. They stole a sum of money from her handbag and fled from the house.

“Sean’s partner discovered him in the hallway, with a gunshot wound to his stomach, he was not breathing.

“An Garda Síochána made appeals for public information at the time and on ‘Crimecall’ in December 2012.

“On this, the 20th anniversary of Sean Poland's murder, gardaí continue to appeal for information in this case and believe that a number of people have yet to come forward who may now be in a position to assist in bringing those responsible to justice.“

“With the passage of time some person may now be in a position to provide information to investigating gardaí that they could not provide at the time, or maybe some person who did provide information at the time may be now in a position to provide further information.”

Anyone with information can contact investigating Gardaí at Mayorstone Garda Station 061 456 980, the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666 111 or any Garda Station.

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