Inquest into death of Derry man Gérard Hampson could start in January hearing told

An inquest into the death of a Derry man found on the shores of Lough Neagh in 2008 could be held in January, a preliminary hearing has heard.

Sunday, 17th October 2021, 11:40 am

Gérard Hampson (53) whose last address was Northland Road in Derry disappeared six weeks before his body was found on the shores of Lough Neagh on January 9 2008.

At a preliminary hearing on Friday the Coroner Joe McCrisken was told that the disclosure element of the hearing was now almost complete and some thought could be given to setting a date for an actual hearing.

Mr Paul Foster for the next of kin said that while the disclosure aspect was welcome there still needed to be a discussion on the availability of witnesses and the scope of the inquest.

The Coroner said he would rule on scope very quickly.

He said that as for a date for hearing a lot depended on court room availability.

He said the only courtroom available was in Banbridge and while not very accessible to Derry, SightLink arrangements could be made.

The Coroner said he was currently scheduled to hear an inquest in January but it had been indicated that might adjourn. If it did, he said, they could schedule this one for a week in January.

Failing this the next available date would be in November 2022.

Another preliminary hearing was scheduled for November 5 to check for availability of dates and witnesses.