tonyyouens.com
Letter from Tony Lundy
re: Jacqueline Poole case
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The following is a letter written by Tony Lundy in March 2004 to the Costa Blanca News.
It is reprinted here with his permission.
 

 

Dear Sir,

I refer to the article on Page 17 of March 5-11 edition, part 1 Supernatural.

The murder of Jacqueline Poole was not solved by a psychic called Christine Holohan.
You state that, "police at the time had no leads as to who her killer was and had almost given up any hope of solving the murder!"

Tony Batters was never a Detective. He was a beat constable and was the officer who attended the scene when the murder was discovered. Because of his local knowledge and keeness to help, I seconded him to the investigation team. He went to interview Christine Holohan with a Detective Constable and became somewhat obsessed with her views, and remains so!

Anthony Ruark was a local criminal and an associate of the victim and he was a suspect within a day of the murder. He was interviewed and kept in custody on more than one occasion and did not become a suspect because of Holohan.

It was an extremely difficult and complex investigation because of the background of the victim and her numerous criminal associates. The victim had been strangled, beaten, robbed of jewellery and sexually assaulted. There was therefore some forensic evidence available but in those days it was not conclusive evidence. It was possible to eliminate many suspects by blood grouping but not possible to prosecute someone because they were the same blood group as semen found at the scene. This was the case with Ruark. He was always a prime suspect but there was insufficient evidence to prosecute him, much to my disappointmenton behalf of the victim's family.

Christine Holohan gave information without doubt. I have an open mind as to how she obtained this information, but she did not supply anything that advanced the investigation. At the time I used to say to the officers dealing with her: "If she is so in touch with the case could she please tell us where the missing jewellery is." Of course, she could not do so.

Unfortunately, we never discovered the whereabouts of the missing items and eventually I had to close down the investigation for the lack of evidence at that time. The file would never be closed.

In my closing report I stated that Ruark was the most likely person to have murdered Jacqueline Poole. I always hoped that advanced forensic testing would lead to the prosecution of Ruark and fortunately this happened. He had many convictions but it was not until the year 2000 that a legal DNA sample from him was available to be used in evidence.

During the intial investigation Ruark had denied visiting the victim and having any contact with her. Of course, faced with the DNA evidence he had to change his tune and tried a different defence.

I attended the Old Bailey with DCI McKinley and his team. The defence lawyers tried to suggest that Ruark was never a major suspect, but were shocked to discover what had been said in my reports many years ago.

It was very satisfying to convict Ruark after all those years; particularly for the victim's family. Also from a personal point of view, as it was the only major investigation I had not solved in my career

Tony Batters had become obsessed with Christine Holohan. He even travelled to Ireland to appear on television with her and was fully aware of my thoughts on the subject.

She did not supply anything significant which advanced or assisted the investigation!! That fact is beyond dispute. I could refer you to numerous officers - including Norman McKinley who could confirm what I have said!

Yours, TL

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