Priest labels killers the 'devil's disciples'

A priest at the funeral of murdered west Belfast man Danny McGurk today labelled his killers the “devil’s disciples“.

A priest at the funeral of murdered west Belfast man Danny McGurk today labelled his killers the “devil’s disciples“.

Father Matt Wallace, speaking at Requiem Mass at St Paul’s Church on the Falls Road, urged Mr McGurk’s murderers to give themselves up and apologise to his family.

Mr McGurk, 35, was shot five times by three masked men who burst into his home at Ross Road in the lower Falls area last Sunday. His family have blamed dissident republicans for his murder.

It is believed he was shot following a row with members of the Real IRA.

Father Wallace said the victim had no political connections and was shot because he stood up for the people he loved.

He added that Mr McGurk’s death was “out of time, out of place and totally unnecessary“.

Several hundred mourners followed Mr McGurk’s coffin as it was taken from his mother’s home in Sorella Street to the church.

Three floral tributes spelling out the names “husband“, “son” and “daddy” were on the hearse as it made its way to the church.

His body was later taken to the City Cemetery for burial.

Today’s funeral went ahead two days after a judge upheld a decision to refuse a second post mortem examination on behalf of a man charged by police investigating the murder.

Lawyers acting for Patrick O’Mahoney, 41, who was charged with firearms and explosives offences, had applied for a judicial review of the decision by Belfast Coroner John Lecky to refuse their request.

The application had been made on the grounds that a second examination may have disclosed vital evidence in the event that O’Mahoney was charged with the murder.

O’Mahoney, a taxi driver, was arrested on Tuesday with two other men and a woman. The others were later released without charge.

He was remanded in custody at Belfast Magistrates Court on Thursday on charges of being in possession of two guns and ammunition with intent to endanger life and with having explosive substances in suspicious circumstances.

The arms and explosives were discovered in a car outside O’Mahoney’s home.

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