Garda headquarters making fresh enquiries into murder of Limerick teenager following internal probe into claims Garda shredded witness statement

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GARDA Headquarters is making fresh enquiries into the murder of Limerick teenager Jeffrey Hannan, who was beaten to death 14 years ago.

Assistant Garda Commissioner Michael Finn traveled to Limerick earlier this week to meet the victim’s father Alan Hannan, it’s emerged.

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Mr Hannan said he shared concerns at the meeting about allegations that a former garda shredded a witness statement relating to his son’s murder in order to protect certain individuals.

The former garda was not involved in the garda investigation into the Hannan murder, and they retired from the force while appealing findings of an internal garda disciplinary probe into the claims against them.

This individual was facing a second internal disciplinary probe into claims they perverted the course of justice.

The internal disciplinary proceeding were dropped when the Garda retired.

A peer review of the Hannan murder probe is presently being conducted within the Limerick Garda Division under the direction of Chief Superintendent Gerry Roche.

Assistant Commissioner Finn is also examining the murder investigation files.

The serious claims against the former garda are being separately investigated by the Garda Ombudsman Commission Office (GSOC).

While GSOC has been aware of the allegations against the former Garda for the past two years, it officially began its investigation last January.

It’s understood GSOC investigators were awaiting the outcome of internal garda procedures before officially launching their own probe.

The GSOC criminal probe is running under Section 98 of the Garda Siochana Act which allows GSOC to investigate a former Garda if claims against them relate to when they were serving in the force.

A GSOC spokesman said this investigation is “ongoing”, and that it was “making no comment at this time as a result”.

Alan Hannan said after having met with Ass Commissioner Finn he has “renewed hope” of getting justice for his innocent son.

Jeffrey Hannan (19) was beaten to death with an axe before being dragged across a green area at O’Malley Park, Southill, on November 22, 2007.

He was walking home from a night out when he encountered a group of individuals drinking at a bonfire where he met his death, not far from his home.

Twenty people have been arrested in relation to the murder probe but no one has been charged in connection with the killing.

Last February, Mr Hannan said he had “lost confidence” in the original murder investigation. Around the same time Garda Commissioner Harris appeared as a guest on the Late Late Show on RTE and told host Ryan Tubridy he was focussed on giving victims “who might otherwise be silent, a voice, and an opportunity for justice”.

Speaking now, Mr Hannan said he is “thankful” to the Commissioner for sending a representative to meet him in Limerick.

“I just want the gardai to help me, that’s all. This is going on 14 years, and it has been dragging me and my family down for so long,” Mr Hannan said.

“It’s about time it ended, I just want justice for my son,” he added.