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'Forgiven' Ian Bailey has 'buried the hatchet' with former accuser Marie Farrell

Murder suspect says he's 'pretty sure' he knows who killed Sophie

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Ian Bailey says he met Farrell when Jim Sheridan was making a documentary about
Sophie.

Ian Bailey says he met Farrell when Jim Sheridan was making a documentary about Sophie.

Ian Bailey says he met Farrell when Jim Sheridan was making a documentary about Sophie.

Ian Bailey has ­revealed he recently met his former accuser Marie Farrell for the first time since his court appearances and 'buried the hatchet' with her.

The self-confessed murder suspect told the Sunday World: "I met her briefly in Schull when Jim Sheridan was shooting his documentary last year.

"He was shooting the reconstruction scenes. I met her on the street. We said hello. I have a long time ago forgiven her. We didn't say a lot to each other, but we were polite to each other."

In January 1997 Farrell rang the gardaí and anonymously told them about seeing a man, whom she later claimed was Bailey, at Kealfadda Bridge near murder victim Sophie Toscan du Plantier's house on the night of the killing in December 1996.

She was later identified and in 2001 gave a statement to the gardaí stating the man was Bailey, reiterating her claim in 2003, at a libel hearing Bailey took against several newspapers.

In 2004, she was threatened with legal action by Bailey to retract her statements, and the following year she reported being intimidated by Bailey in her shop.

In 2005 she retracted her statement, saying Bailey was not the man she saw and ­alleged that she was ­coerced into falsely identifying him by gardaí.

She also testified to that effect in Bailey's unsuccessful 2015 High Court action against the State for wrongful arrest.

Bailey also last night emphasised that Farrell was convinced it was a different man to him that had seen outside her shop shortly before the murder.

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Marie Farrell made claims.

Marie Farrell made claims.

Marie Farrell made claims.

"Besides, Marie Farrell said the person she saw outside the shop was not as tall as me and it wasn't me, he was much, much shorter than me," he insisted.

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He also maintained he never threatened Farrell.

He said: "There was no intimidation, no threats, none whatsoever from me to Marie Farrell."

Bailey also told the Sunday World he is "pretty sure" Sophie's killer was a local man.

"When I say I'm pretty convinced, you know the difference between believing something and having all the evidence, there's a difference," he said.

"I don't care what anybody thinks about it, the point is I ­believe it. I do believe this ­person is dead. I am careful in what I say as this ­person has family. I don't want to upset them.

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Ian Bailey (left) and Sophie Tuscan du Plantier

Ian Bailey (left) and Sophie Tuscan du Plantier

Ian Bailey (left) and Sophie Tuscan du Plantier

"But there is a body of evidence, which may be the wrong way to put it, pointing to this person and someone who could very well be responsible for her death. I don't have enough information though and I'm still trying to get as much information as I can."

Bailey added that he has a lot of time for local gardaí, despite being put in the frame for the murder by several officers.

"I have a lot of respect for the young ones. I know they have nothing to do with the original case," he said.

"I received a warning a few weeks ago from them that they had information that somebody was out to do me no good.

"They told me I might be in danger, I think it's called a Garda Information Message. I wasn't in fear at the time as there were two uniformed Garda officers in my presence."

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