Updated: 10/10/16 : 06:34:01
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No Sligo search for missing schoolboy carried out

Gardai have failed to confirm links between the paedophile DJ, Eamon Cooke, and the disappearance of Philip Cairns, as the 30th anniversary of the schoolboy's last sighting approaches.  

However in a surprising move it has been confirmed that expected searches of properties linked to Cooke in Sligo and Dublin have not taken place.

Cooke' ex wife claimed that he bought a site in Aclare, near Tubbercurry in south Sligo.

In June, gardaí were expected to bring in forensic experts with specialist equipment to examine the land and determine where soil movements have taken place over the past three decades.

Another four properties in the Tallaght/Rathfarnham area of south county Dublin, which Cooke had been using to erect masts to extend the signal coverage of his station, Radio Dublin were also expected to be examined.

It was also confirmed that gardaí would have the services of a forensic anthropologist and a forensic archaeologist on stand-by in case skeletal remains are found.

Cooke died in June in a Dublin hospice in his 80th year. He was father of 11.

A team of detectives are still analysing hundreds of Cooke's personal records and documents which his family released to gardai after his death.

The investigation into Cooke, a predatory paedophile, was launched after a key witness made a statement in May to say she saw the DJ attack Philip Cairns in his Radio Dublin studio when she was nine years old.

However, the woman was registered as being in school on the day the 13-year-old boy disappeared in October, 1986. Detectives have also failed to reconcile the witness's account with other evidence that suggested that she first encountered Eamon Cooke some time after Cairns went missing.


The anomalies have further dampened hopes of solving the boy's mysterious disappearance 30 years ago this month.

It emerged in August that there was no forensic evidence to link Cooke to the crime. Garda confirmed DNA samples taken from Philip Cairns's schoolbag, which was found near his home, do not match those of Cooke.

The woman first contacted Gardai in 2011, but she did not make a formal statement until May this year, as Cooke was dying.

Despite some anomalies, gardai have corroborated other aspects of the woman's statement and are continuing to investigate Cooke in connection with Philip Cairns.

The supposed involvement of Eamon Cooke in the boy's disappearance has generated enormous renewed interest and social media debate about what may have happened to Philip Cairns.