Richie Barron died on a lonely country road as he walked home in October 1996. Six weeks later, twelve innocent people were arrested, suspected of his murder. Six years later, a tribunal was established to find out what happened. It would take six more years for the full truth to emerge.
Chaos and Conspiracy tells the full story of what happened from that fateful night to the conclusion of the tribunal, laying bare the corruption at the heart of the investigation as Gardaí conspired to create false evidence, and the chaos that allowed corruption go undetected as senior officers let the murder inquiry run out of control.
This is above all the story of the families wrongly identified as murder suspects, and their dignity and courage in fighting back against the forces of the State ranged against them. Many of those arrested were brutalised in custody, with effects that would take years to heal.
The author, Gerard Cunningham, is a freelance journalist. He covered the Morris Tribunal extensively for The Irish Times and other media. He was editor of Karen McGlinchey’s Charades, a book about an earlier module of the Morris tribunal, and co-wrote Breaking the Silence with Martin Ridge.