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February 09 , 2010

Veronica Guerin


At 1pm on 26 June 1996 the Sunday Independent's crime reporter Veronica Guerin was shot dead by a motorcycle pillion passenger as she waited at traffic lights on the outskirts of Dublin - the victim of her own crusading expos-s of leading criminals. Her death profoundly shocked the country. Both the President and the Taoiseach attended her funeral; tributes were paid to her in parliament, and hundreds of bouquets of flowers were placed in her memory by members of the public. Within a month new anti-crime measures had been introduced and two of the leading murder suspects had fled the country. While Guerin was hailed as a heroine, the finest journalist of her generation, the Sunday Independent was busy denying any culpability in her death, and its officials vigorously refuted accusations that the paper's cult of personality and cynical controversialism put its writers in danger. Emily O'Reilly's book exposes the frightening moral bankruptcy of the media and the devastating consequences of this - for the individual and for society.

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