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Murdered prison officer’s funeral takes place today

David Black was shot dead near Belfast as he drove along the motorway to work on Thursday.

THE FUNERAL OF murdered prison officer David Black will take place today at his local church in Co Tyrone.

David’s wife, Yvonne, son, Kyle and daughter, Kyra will lead mourners as the 52-year-old is laid to rest.

A private family service from the Black family home will start at 11.45am followed by a church service at Molesworth Presbyterian Church, Cookstown at 1pm. Mr Black will then be buried in Kildress Parish Churchyard.

The father of two was fatally shot as he drove to work at Maghaberry jail when a car with Dublin registration plates pulled up alongside his on Northern Ireland’s main M1 motorway and opened fire. His car veered off the road and into a deep ditch, and he died at the scene.

A car thought to be linked to the shooting was found burnt-out in Lurgan later that day.

PSNI examine the scene of shooting on the M1 motorway. Image: Peter Morrison/AP/Press Association Images.

Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness wanted to attend Mr Black’s funeral, but the family did not want to have any Sinn Fein representatives there.

Police said the attack had the hallmarks of dissident republicans opposed to the Northern Ireland peace process, while politicians from all sides in London, Belfast and Dublin condemned the killing.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also condemned the “senseless murder” denouncing it as an “outrageous and cowardly act.”

Three people arrested in connection with the incident have been released without charge. One of those was high-profile Republican Colin Duffy. He has now threatened to sue the PSNI for unlawful arrest, the Irish News has revealed.

Additional reporting © AFP, 2012

Read: Two men arrested in David Black murder probe released without charge >

Read: Hillary Clinton calls killing of David Black “outrageous and cowardly act” >

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