Updated: 19/09/12 : 08:03:58Printable Version
Malcolm Macarthur, who was arrested just over 30 years ago in the then attorney general’s apartment, has been released from prison.
Now aged 66, Macarthur has served over 30 years of a life sentence for the murder in 1982 of nurse, Bridie Gargan, who was bludgeoned to death as she sunbathed in Dublin’s Phoenix Park during a work break. Three days later he murdered a farmer, Mr Donal Dunne, in Co Westmeath.The Irish Times
reports that for reasons never fully explained, the DPP decided never to charge Macarthur with Mr Dunne’s murder.
Last night the Department of Justice issued as statement saying that Macarthur was approved for reviewable temporary release under the supervision of the Probation Service from last Monday.
He is believed to have been released from Shelton Abbey, an open prison in Co Wicklow at 9am on Monday. He had served part of his sentence there and parts in Mountjoy and Arbour Hill prisons.
While he had been released for short periods at Christmas, it was only in 2011 on the approval of the Minister for Justice Alan Shatter that a structured programme of temporary release was approved.
The Department said the Minister “was at all times conscious of the dreadful events of 1982 and of their impact on family members”. It said that conditions attaching to his release were closely monitored by the Prison Service and that if he was in breach, he could be returned to prison. The statement said the victims families had been contacted and informed of developments.
Until this week, Mr Macarthur was one of the longest serving prisoners in the State. He must now remain within the country and keep in contact with the prison service at least once a week.