A politician at the centre of allegations he had used political influence to prevent continuing garda questioning of the main suspect for the disappearance of missing child Mary Boyle yesterday denied any involvement.
Sean McEniff, Ireland’s longest-serving politician, said in a statement through his solicitors that he “emphatically and unconditionally denies that he was the politician who allegedly contacted the Gardai in Ballyshannon at the time of the disappearance of Mary Boyle”.
The statement from the Fianna Fáil county councillor, who has served on local authorities for 55 years, including Bundoran town council and Donegal County Council, added: “He has no knowledge of such a call other than what he has heard recently on what was contained in the video ‘Mary Boyle, The Untold Story’.
“Mr McEniff is satisfied that the two former Gardai interviewed as part of the video have recently clarified, that at the time of the disappearance or in the investigation that followed, neither were aware of any such alleged phonecall and that there was no impediment from their superiors in the investigation as a result.”
The solicitors said the statement was being issued at Mr McEniff’s request, “in relation to the rumour and innuendo surrounding a Youtube video published recently on the internet, ‘Mary Boyle, The Untold Story’.”
Mr McEniff said: “The disappearance of Mary Boyle has been a tragedy for the Boyle family and they are deeply affected by it.
“The Gardai have conducted detailed and extensive investigations that are continuing and should be co-operated with by everyone.”
The statement said Mr McEniff supported the call for a Commission Of Investigation to be set up to investigate all aspects of the disappearance of Mary Boyle.
It added he had taken legal advice in relation to the defamatory comments made both directly and by innuendo and will take such steps as are necessary to protect his reputation.
“Some of the comments and statements that have been made are false, malicious and damaging to Mr McEniff.
“He will not be making any further public statement and the matter will be dealt with through his solicitors,” he statement added.
Although Mr McEniff was not named on the video, there has been widespread speculation in south Donegal he was the politician which the video claimed made a call to a senior garda which resulted in the main suspect not being arrested in six-year-old Mary’s disappearance near her grandparents home at Cashelard, Ballyshannon, 39 years ago.
Already, one of the gardaí in the video, retired Sgt Martin Collins, said there was neither political or State interference in the inquiry.
He said alleged phonecall comments emanated from the hearsay of a station orderly who would not have been an investigating officer in the girl’s case. He was emphatic there was no cover-up by gardaí, at any rank.
He said the “real cover-up” into Mary’s disappearance and presumed murder, involves an individual or individuals who were still withholding information.
Meanwhile, up to 500 people marched in Ballyshannon on Saturday last seeking justice for Mary Boyle and living relatives.
A Garda cold case team is due in Ballyshannon soon to investigate the 1977 disappearance near the Donegal-Fermanagh border.
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