The family of a teenager shot dead in Derry 50 years ago have secured High Court permission to challenge a decision not to prosecute a former soldier for his murder.
Relatives of Daniel Hegarty have been granted permission to seek a judicial review of the dismissal of the criminal case against the ex-soldier.
Senior judges have listed their legal actions for a full hearing in January.
15-year-old Daniel was shot twice in the head during a British Army operation in the Creggan area of the city in July 1972.
The killing occurred during Operation Motorman, when British troops were deployed to clear so-called no-go areas in Derry at the height of the riots.
In 2011, an investigative jury unanimously found that Daniel posed no risk and had been shot without warning.
Three years ago, the Public Prosecutor’s Office (PPS) announced that the military veteran identified as Soldier B should be charged with murder.
He was also accused of intentionally hurting Daniel’s cousin Christopher Hegarty, then 17, in the same incident.
But last July, the PPS dropped the charges after the trial of two former paratroopers for various Troubles-era offenses collapsed after testimony was ruled inadmissible.
Daniel’s sister Margaret Brady disputes the legality of this decision.
Their lawyers claim that the PPS acted irrationally and without adequate evidence.
In court today Lord Justice Treacy, who was sitting with Mr Justice Colton and Mr Justice McFarland, confirmed that the challenge had cleared the first hurdle without hearing any arguments.
Ms Brady’s attorney, Des Doherty, later said: “The Hegarty family welcomes the decision to grant her request for a leave of absence (to seek a judicial review) of the decision not to prosecute Soldier B for the 1972 murder of Daniel .
“We look forward to the full hearing in early January next year.”
Mr. Doherty added: “This development is positive and welcome news on the 50th anniversary of Operation Motorman.”
https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/courts/daniel-hegartys-family-secure-permission-to-challenge-decision-not-to-prosecute-former-soldier-for-his-murder-42080171.html Daniel Hegarty’s family secure permission to challenge decision not to prosecute former soldier for his murder