Investigative journalist Gemma O Doherty released ‘Mary Boyle: The Untold Story’ exactly a month ago on the video sharing platform Youtube.com, and has received praise both nationally and internationally for her work.
‘Mary Boyle: The Untold Story’ won an Award of Excellence in the Feature Documentary category and an Award of Recognition in the Women Filmmaker section at the Hollywood Indepdendent Documentary Awards July 2016.
Despite set backs such as being forced to remove the documentary for a period of time due to a threatened defamation case, and having R.T.E. bill Gemma a staggering €12,915 to use a three and a half minute clip from their archives in the documentary, the documentary has done extremely well, racking up over 148,000 views.
The documentary took several years of investigation and research, and three months to produce.
Mary’s twin sister Ann has been on a pursuit for the truth for the last forty years, which has taken her to Stormont, Westminster, Brussels and Washington DC. She has been accompanied by Gemma O Doherty in her campaign.
Mary Boyle went missing in March 1977 at just six years old from her grandparent’s farm in Ballyshannon.
Broadcaster Joe Duffy has slammed claims that there is ‘RTE bias’ on the reporting of missing Mary Boyle.
The Liveline presenter has hit out at suggestions recent that the station is somehow covering up the disappearance of there six year old who vanished outside Ballyshannon in 1977.
Duffy said he has followed the Mary Boyle story closely over the years.
And he said suggestions that there is a cover-up saying “Ireland is not Turkey.”
“I know there is no conspiracy in RTE to cover up anything is this awful case and I doubt very much there is a conspiracy in the Garda and Government,” he said.
The popular broadcaster also said he did not like RTE constantly being referred to as ‘the State broadcaster.”
He referred specifically to the recent You Tube documentary ‘Mary Boyle – The Untold Story’, in which it was claimed that a serving Donegal politician prevented Gardai from investigating the case properly.
He added “I listened to Gemma O’Doherty (the maker of the video) speaking to a local radio station last week which produced little new information but quickly descended into a 20 minute attack on ‘State broadcaster’ RTE for bias in the case. Firstly, to keep referring to RTE as the ‘State broadcaster’ seems to imply that there is a widespread cover up of Mary’s murder. RTE is not the ‘State broadcaster.’ Ireland is not Turkey,” he said.
Duffy also lashed Sinn Fein and their part in “invariably using it as another attack on RTE.’
“Let’s look at all the unsolved murders of children in the last 50 years – in Northern Ireland during the Troubles my research shows that 144 children aged between 16 and under who died violently – including children who died in the same year as Mary.
“And whether Sinn Fein likes it or not, the biggest group of children were killed by so-called ‘republican paramilitaries.’. Most of these killings remain unsolved today,” said Duffy.
Donegal County Councillor Sean McEniff has denied he is the politician at the centre of the Mary Boyle case.
The Bundoran councillor issued a statement in the wake of ‘false, damaging and malicious’ assertions that he was the politician who interfered in the case.
Gemma O’Doherty’s documentary, ‘Mary Boyle: The Untold Story’, mentioned an unnamed politician who interfered with the gardaí’s ability to question their prime suspect.
Following speculative comments being posted on the video, O’Doherty removed the video for several hours before making it public again – with the comment section disabled.
McEniff is the second Fianna Fáil politician to come forward and deny any political involvement in the Mary Boyle case. Last week, Pat The Cope Gallagher stated that despite allegations, he was not even involved in politics at the time of Mary’s disapearance in 1977.
In a statement issued by his solicitor, McEniff said he “emphatically and unconditionally denied he was the politician who allegedly contacted gardaí in Ballyshannon at the time of the disappearance of Mary Boyle.”
McEniff said; “The disappearance of Mary Boyle has been a tragedy for the Boyle family and they are deeply affected by it. The gardaí have conducted detailed and extensive investigations which are continuing and should be co-operated with by all concerned.”
McEniff will not be making any more public statements on the issue, and all further lines of enquiry will be dealt with through his solicitors.
On Saturday, a march took place in Ballyshannon to commemorate Mary’s disappearance. More than 500 people marched in solidarity for Mary almost 40 years after her disapppearance.
Donegal County Council is to hear a call today for a public inquiry into the Mary Boyle disappearance case.
A motion has been put before the council by Independent Councillor Frank McBrearty Jnr on the issue.
The move will be the latest in recent days which brings increased pressure for a full new investigation into the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of the 6 year old near Cashelard outside Ballyshannon in 1977.
A public march in support of Mary and her family took place in Ballyshannon on Saturday afternoon last and was attended by a large crowd of people.
Organiser Naomi Brady said she was prompted to support the family after watching a You Tube video ‘Mary Boyle The Untold Story’ about the case of the missing schoolgirl.
The Garda Cold Case team have also confirmed that they have reignited their file on the Mary Boyle case and that officers will carry out fresh investigations within the coming months.
A search of lands which took place near Cashelard at the request of the Boyle family on Friday last proved inconclusive.
More than 500 people turned out for a commemoration walk in memory of missing Co Donegal schoolgirl Mary Boyle today.
The march, organised by local Ballyshannon resident Naomi Brady, saw the public walk from the centre of the town out to the local Garda station.
Once at the station balloons were released in memory of missing Mary who disappeared almost 40 years ago in 1977.
Marchers wore purple and white ribbons in memory of missing Mary who was wearing the same coloured ribbons when she was last seen walking across lands behind her uncle Gerry near Cashelard.
Among those present was missing Mary’s twin sister Ann who has campaigned tirelessly to find out the truth about what really happened to her two sister.
Marchers held placards reading various slogans including ‘Justice for Mary Boyle’ and also ‘Child Killer At Large’ and ‘No More Cover-Up’ and ‘Arrest Killer Now.’
Some in the crowd had come form as far away as Mullingar for the march.
Purple and white ribbons also hung from the front of many shops and even out of a statue of the late rock singer Rory Gallagher in solidarity with the walkers.
Singer Margo, who is related to missing Mary’s late dad Charlie, said she had decided to stay away from the march saying it was the people’s day.
Organiser Ms Brady, a sister of former Lord Mayor of Dublin Cyprian Brady, said she was moved to hold the march after recently seeing a You Tube video entitled ‘Mary Boyle – The Untold Story.’
She told walkers “I was sitting on an armchair having watched the documentary and I was absolutely dumbfounded to think that here we are 40 years later and nothing has moved on.
“I felt that we needed to do something for the family and particular for Ann because there is nothing that anyone would know that would be the amount of pain and suffering and hardship that this family have gone through over the last 40 years.”
She added that some of those at the walk yesterday has searched for Mary in the initial hours after she disappeared.
“We’re all here today with he hope and it is only hope, that Mary Boyle can be brought home. This has to come to an end. We need this child to be brought home and laid to rest,” she said.
Having walked through the town, the large crowd stopped outside Ballyshannon Garda station.
Purple and white ballons with the number ’40’ on them were then released into the sky by local children attending the walk.
Ms Brady then said that it was positive that the march had finished at Ballyshannon Garda station which she stressed was a new station than the one which was present in the town when Mary vanished in 1977.
She said that corruption needed to end and that Mary needed to be brought home.
“There may be people at home having a cup of tea who knows what really happened to Mary. They need to come forward and let the Gardai know what really happened,” she said.
A YouTube documentary on the case of missing Donegal schoolgirl Mary Boyle which had been removed from the channel because of a threatened defamation case is back on line again.
The video, which has been viewed more than 80,000 times since it was uploaded a week ago on July 4th, was removed for a time on Tuesday.
A message on the video said “The content is not available in this country domain due to a defamation complaint.”
The posted message on the video did not clarify the issue. But just hours later it was back online.
The documentary, written and directed by investigative journalist Gemma O’Doherty, gives what it says is an updated account of the case of Ireland’s youngest missing person.
Mary Boyle vanished on her grandparents’ remote farm at Cashelard outside Ballyshannon in Donegal in March 1977 when she was just 6.
The documentary reveals allegations by retired senior officers that a politician requested the chief suspect not be arrested.
The text accompanying the YouTube video claims the chief suspect still lives in Donegal today.
Reacting to the news of the video’s removal at the time, singer Margo, a cousin of missing Mary’s late father Charles, said she was disappointed by the move.
She said the video had created a new spark in the investigation into what had happened to Mary 40 years ago.
She added that she understood the video was removed because of tweets made following the documentary which named the alleged chief suspect in the case.
“I am extremely disappointed that the video has been removed because it has certainly given a new lease of life to the case in recent days,” she said.
The video has even led to a planned march in memory of Mary which will take place this Saturday at 2pm.
The organiser Naomi Brady, said the video sparked her into staging the march in Ballyshannon.
Margo O’Donnell, who has search for the truth about missing Mary along with the schoolgirl’s twin sister Ann for the past 40 years, said the removal of the video will not stop the search.
“When myself and Ann speak of finding Mary, we always say ‘when’ and not ‘if’ and that’s as strong as ever today. We know we will find her one day.
“I know there are people out there who know what happened to Mary – people who know a lot more than me. If they can find it in their hearts to come forward and to tell the truth, then all this will be over and Mary can be given a proper burial,” she said.
The video had been removed from You Tube last night just after 7pm but was back on line and available to view around 11pm.
BREAKING NEWS: A march aimed at highlighting the disappearance of Mary Boyle is to take place in Ballyshannon this weekend.
Hundreds of people from the town have already expressed an interest in attending the event which has been organised by local resident Naomi Brady.
Ms Brady, herself a twin and a mother of twins, told Donegal Daily she was touched into taking a stand on Mary’s case after viewing a You Tube video on the Donegal child’s disappearance in Cashelard in 1977.
“As a twin and a mother of twins, I was touched by the programme and how Mary’s twin sister Ann and her family must have suffered down through the years.
“I am hoping this march will spark someone into doing the right thing now. Like a lot of people I think that someone must know what happened to Mary.
“I am hoping that after all this time someone who knows something can find it in their heart to come forward and to give the Boyle family some closure.
“Hopefully, it will also lead to Mary’s remains being found and she can be given a christian burial,” she said.
The march, which will start at 2pm this Saturday, will leave the Abbey Centre before walking to the local Garda station where a few words will be said.
Asked why the march was finishing at the local Garda station, Mrs Brady said “It’s where the search for Mary Boyle ended.”
Ms Brady stressed the march would be a peaceful one and is non-political.
She asked anyone who is planning to attend the march to wear purple and white ribbons in honour of Mary, who was understood to be wearing similar ribbons when she disappeared on March 18th, 1977, aged just six.
Ms Brady, who is originally from Dublin but who has been resident in Ballyshannon for four years, said she was probably in a better position to call for such a march than local people.
“I think because I have no connections with the area that I was probably in a better position to suggest such a march.
“Ballyshannon is a great town and I think it has always been associated with Mary’s disappearance. I think people will welcome the chance to express their support with the memory of this child and her family.
“I am just hopeful that it will help in some small way to eventually leading to some form of closure for this family,” she said.
The documentary took several years of investigation and three months to produce.
Mary’s twin sister, Ann’s pursuit for the truth has taken her to Stormont, Westminster, Brussels and Washington DC, and has been accompanied by Gemma O Doherty in her campaign.
Mary Boyle went missing in March 1977 at just six years old from her grandparent’s farm in Ballyshannon. She is Ireland’s youngest missing person.
Ms. O Doherty reported that R.T.E. have refused to co-operate and refuse to inform the Irish public on the Mary Boyle case, and R.T.E. have billed her a staggering €12,915 to use a three and a half minute clip from their archives in the documentary.
The long-awaited documentary made by journalist Gemma O Doherty which focuses on the disappearance of Mary Boyle in March, 1977, is to be uploaded to Youtube tonight at 9:20pm.
At just six years old Mary vanished from her grandparent’s farm in Ballyshannon. She is Ireland’s youngest missing person. The case has remained unsolved and no closure has been given to Mary’s family despite the disappearance occurring almost 40 years ago.
Gemma O Doherty has been working closely with Mary’s twin sister, Ann Doherty to make this eye-opening documentary.
O Doherty claims that gardai were on the verge of identifying Mary’s killer, but a local politician began interfering with the investigation, leading to the suspect not being questioned thoroughly.
THE TWIN sister of missing Mary Boyle is to travel to Washington next week in a bid to have the investigation into the case expanded.
Ann Doherty will meet members of the US Congress including Congressman Brendan Boyle whose father is from Glencolmcille.
Ann says her sister Mary, who was just six, was sexually assaulted and murdered when she went missing from her grandparents’ home in 1977.
“The key purpose of this trip is to open Irish-America’s eyes and those of the US authorities to the widescale corruption in the Irish police and the criminal justice system,” Ms Doherty said in a statement.
“For most of my adult life I have known who murdered Mary.
“He is walking around Donegal today, immune from prosecution.”
Ms Doherty will travel to Washington with journalist Gemma O’Doherty, who has been investigating the case.
Ms Doherty has already travelled to Westminster and Brussels to discuss her sister’s disappearance with officials there, and met Taoiseach Enda Kenny last November to outline her concerns.
The Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission is conducting an investigation into the garda case on foot of complaints.
THE SERIAL KILLER linked to the disappearance of missing Donegal girl Mary Boyle who died in prison two weeks ago has had a secret funeral lasting just six minutes – after no-one turned up to claim his remains.
Robert Black died on January 12. He was serving 12 life sentences for the kidnap and murder of four girls – has long been suspected of killing seven-year-old Mary Boyle here.
Black, who was 68, died of natural causes in Maghaberry prison.
The North’s prison service had Black cremated in Belfast during a secret funeral on Friday night.
Presbyterian chaplain of Maghaberry Prison Rev Rodney Cameron conducted the service at Roselawn crematorium in east Belfast.
He read a passage from Psalm 90 before committing the killer’s body for cremation with the words, “Earth to Earth, Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust.”
The paedophile’s ashes will now be disposed of at an undisclosed location.
Two years ago cold case ex-detective Chris Clark claimed he had found evidence that the sex predator was in Donegal when Mary disappeared – and came back here the next year searching for another victim.
Mary vanished in Cashelard in March 1977.
Former detective Clark claimed he has evidence van driver Black was working in the area at the time.
The twin sister of Mary Boyle has identified a new location in Co Donegal where she suspects the murdered schoolgirl may have been buried.
Ann Doherty has written to the Garda Commissoner Noirin O’Sullivan requesting the area be sealed off as a matter of urgency and forensically examined by a team of experts.
This site has never been searched before.
She has also asked the Taoiseach to intervene in the matter given her concerns about a garda cover-up in the case.
Mary vanished in March 1977 at her grandparents’ home in Cashelard, Ballyshannon and her remains have never been found.
In the days after her disappearance, it is claimed a politician telephoned Ballyshannon Station and requested that certain people were not to be considered suspects.
This claim has been verified by a number of retired senior officers who were working on the case at the time.
Ms Doherty has requested the new search on foot of evidence given to her in recent days, which supports her belief that Mary was murdered by someone known to her.
The information has been provided by a number of individuals who witnessed unusual events in the aftermath of Mary’s death and also in recent times.
Several officers support Ms Doherty’s belief that her sister’s body may have been brought to the location she is now pinpointing.
Ms Doherty has also demanded that any garda search is supervised by independent experts and her legal team. Almost three months ago, she made a statement to officers in Dublin’s Pearse Street Station identifying the person she believes killed Mary.
That individual has to yet to be arrested.
Ms Doherty’s lawyer Darragh Mackin will also seek the assistance and expertise of the Independent Commission for the Location of Victims’ Remains (ICLVR), the north-south body set up to trace the remains of victims of the Northern Ireland conflict.
Ms Doherty hopes that this organisation will broaden its remit for her given her struggle for justice, allegations of a state cover-up in her sister’s murder, and the fact that Mary disappeared just four miles from the border with the North.
Speaking today, she said ‘I have very strong reason to suspect that Mary’s body may have been buried in this new location temporarily or that her remains are still there. I want a search to take place in the coming days without any delay and I have informed the Garda Commissioner of this. The gardai have utterly failed my sister and me.
“I am certain that Mary was brutally assaulted and killed by someone who knew her. That person is still walking around Donegal, a danger to all citizens, especially children.
“I will carry out my own search if I have to but I am pleading with the gardai to finally do the right thing and bring Mary’s killer to justice. I am asking them to look into their own children’s eyes and imagine how they would feel if one of them was violently murdered and the killer was protected for almost four decades.
“Nothing will stop me from finding Mary’s remains and giving her the decent burial she deserves.”
ANN Doherty, the sister of missing Mary Boyle, has made a statement to gardai this evening naming the suspect in her sister’s death, investigative journalist Gemma O’Doherty is reporting.
Margo O’Donnell, sister of singer Daniel, has also made a statement this evening to gardai at Pearse Street in Dublin.
In her report earlier for Broadsheet.ie, reporter O’Doherty writes:
“The twin sister of Mary Boyle will today make a formal statement to Gardai about the identity of the person she believes murdered her sister.
“Ann Doherty will claim Mary was killed by somebody known to her. She says she has been frustrated by an Garda Siochana in her efforts to find Mary’s remains and bring her killer to justice.
“Ann Doherty will allege that on a number of occasions she was told the identity of the killer by a person close to her, but neither that person nor the suspect have ever been arrested.
“In her statement today, Doherty will make a plea to Gardai to arrest the suspect. She will also state that she was informed by a senior Garda that there was political interference in the case, which she believes prevented Mary’s killer from being brought to justice.
“The former officer claims that a politician made contact with Gardai in the days after the child’s murder and made an unusual request in an effort to hinder the investigation. This Garda also believes Mary Boyle may have been sexually assaulted before her death, a fear shared by her sister Ann.
“The officer has also said that he was told the identity of the killer by somebody close to Mary on a number of occasions.”
“In another development, the country singer Margo O’Donnell, sister of Daniel, will visit a Dublin Garda station today to make a formal statement about Mary Boyle’s murder.
“Margo, a former neighbour and cousin of the Boyle family, has spent many years searching for the little girl’s remains. She claims that on three separate occasions she was told by a person close to Mary the identity of the killer but says every time she has spoken to Gardai about the case, she has been dismissed. She describes the killing as a ‘massive Garda cover-up.’ Broadsheet has seen witness statements relating to the case, which reveal inconsistencies that have never been reconciled.
“Ann Doherty believes that if the person she says killed Mary had been properly investigated and questioned by Gardai, they would have confessed to the killing. She is also certain that the individual can still be brought to justice and the remains of her sister found.
“Ann believes her sister is buried somewhere on the 180 acres of farmland in Cashelard, Ballyshannon, once owned by her late grandfather Patrick Gallagher. Some of this land is deep swamp. She rejects suggestions by certain Gardai and reporters that Mary was snatched by a stranger, a claim she describes as ‘ridiculous.’
“She says through the years she has begged Gardai to take certain actions. She also says they have refused to speak to her and that their only point of contact with the family is her mother, Ann Boyle.
“When Ann Doherty sought an inquest in recent years, she was told that this was not possible as Mary may not be dead. A person is considered to be deceased if they have been missing for more than seven years. Mary disappeared 38 years ago.
“Ann Doherty wrote to the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald earlier this year requesting a meeting but this request was not been granted. Ann will attend the Gardai today in the company of her solicitor Darragh Mackin of Kevin Winters Solicitors, a human rights law firm based in Belfast.”
Since she filed the report, reporter O’Doherty said late this evening that both statements had now been completed.