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IRA bombers who killed 22 in pub blasts may finally be brought to justice by DNA breakthrough  
5th-Oct-2016 03:25 am
A 'wealth' of unseen evidence uncovered by fresh inquests set to be revealed

Jonathan Corke
Mirror Online
1 Oct 2016

 photo Wreckage-left-at-the-Mulberry-Bush-pub-in-Birmingham-after-a-bomb-exploded.jpg

The aftermath of the Mulberry Bush pub bomb

The bombers behind two pub blasts in Birmingham over 40 years ago may finally be brought to justice by a DNA breakthrough.

Police re-investigating the 1974 IRA attacks – of which six innocent men were wrongly convicted – have found three profiles and two fingerprints on items collected in the aftermath.

The discovery by a £1.6million review codenamed Operation Castors was revealed in a top-level memo seen by the Sunday Mirror.

The memo says the finds are being checked against databases in Britain, Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic.

And it adds: “It is possible that this could generate new lines of inquiry.”

The attacks on the Mulberry Bush and Tavern in the town pubs killed 21 people and injured 222. A third device was found near a Barclays bank.

The men convicted of the attacks, known as the Birmingham Six, spent 16 years in prison while the real ­perpetrators were never caught.

Now a “wealth” of previously unseen evidence is set to be revealed after fresh inquests were ordered following a lengthy campaign by relatives. In total, Operation Castors, which involved 16 officers and forensic experts, examined more than 18,000 items including exhibits, reports and statements.

The memo from the Office for ­Security and Counter-Terrorism reveals how 35 exhibits from 1974 have been lost, saying this is “deeply worrying”.

It also condemns the original West Midlands Police probe into the ­bombings as “deeply flawed”.

In deciding to order the fresh inquests, Birmingham coroner Louise Hunt said police may have ignored two tip-offs the IRA were about to strike.

Last week the Government told relatives wanting help with legal fees at the new hearings that direct Home Office funding had been refused.

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