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Dublin: 1°C Thursday 2 December 2021

'A despicable act': Two men sentenced in Derry over murder of Paul McCauley

McCauley was attacked at a friend’s barbecue in the early hours of 16 July 2006.

Paul McCauley
Paul McCauley
Image: PSNI

TWO MEN HAVE been sentenced at Laganside Crown Court in Derry for their role in the murder of Paul McCauley. 

McCauley was attacked at a friend’s barbecue in the early hours of 16 July 2006. He suffered severe head injuries, leaving him in a vegetative state.

Over the next nine years, his condition slowly deteriorated and he passed away in June 2015. 

Piper John McClements (28), previously known as Daryl Proctor, from Derry, pleaded guilty to the murder of McCauley. 

Prior to McCauley’s death, McClements was previously charged with his attempted murder and was convicted on 6 February 2006. He served six years in prison of a 12-year sentence. 

Today, he was sentenced to serve a further three years in prison for murder. 

Matthew Gillen (31), from Derry, pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment, half to be served in prison and half on licence. 

Detective Chief Inspector Michael Harvey said his inquiries “would indicate around six males were involved in the attack” on McCauley and his two friends. 

“Paul was 29 years old when he was the innocent victim of this unprovoked sectarian assault from which he never regained consciousness. He was a much-loved friend and family member who volunteered in his local community and his life was brought to a brutal end for no logical reason,” Harvey said. 

I hope today’s sentencing provides some measure of comfort to Paul’s family.
Piper John McClements and Matthew Gillen carried out this despicable act of violence which ultimately took Paul’s life and caused complete devastation to his loved ones. 

“No one can dispute how difficult the past 12 years must have been for Paul’s family since the vicious attack but their dignity, courage and commitment to seeing justice done has never wavered.”

Harvey appealed to anyone who has any information about the other men involved in the attack to “examine your consciences and do the right thing”. 

“Allegiances and loyalties are likely to have changed so I would urge anyone with any information that will help us to bring everyone involved in the assault before the courts to contact police on 101.” 

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