Thursday, November 01, 2012


Patricia Curran - "the taint of incest hanging in the air."the noir and true

In 1952, 19-year-old Patricia Curran was murdered.

"Judge Curran's circle was very high-profile and if for example there was a potential scandal involving high-ranking government and military personnel ( maybe some bizarre homosexual / masonic cult) and Patricia got wind of it, there would be any amount of people with the motivation to exterminate her, and the means to cover it up. 

"As for the brother doing a runner to Africa as a priest..."

Judge Curran's Daughter - Belfast Forum

Old Belfast 8...

Patricia Curran's body 'was found by her 26-year-old brother, Desmond' in the grounds of the Curran family home, in Whiteabbey, in Northern Ireland.

"I was at a social function at the Curran house years ago and I was told that in the kitchen there is a stain on the floor, thought to be blood which suggested the murder took place inside the house."
Judge Curran's Daughter - Belfast Forum

Old Belfast 8... In the 1500s, "Sir Walter Hungerford was ... charged with 'unnatural vice', becoming the first person executed under the Buggery Act of 1533." 

Patricia was the daughter of Major Sir Lancelot Ernest Curran, a top Northern Ireland judge and politician.

Patricia "was found in the driveway of the Curran home, having been stabbed thirty-seven times".

Old Belfast 8...

"Very little blood was discovered at the site, despite the multiple stabbings, suggesting she was not killed where she was found and that her body had been moved.

"Her books, papers, a beret and a handbag were found at the edge of the driveway, 10 yards from the body.

"They were dry, despite the rain. Patricia, a student, did not have these items with her on the bus.

The portfolio of books stacked neatly at the side of the road. Old Belfast 8

"Police have been criticised for the way they carried out their investigation; they did not examine the judge's home for evidence because he would not allow them in until more than a week after the murder.

A senior policeman wrote at the time: "It was decided to pursue every other line of inquiry before allowing our thoughts to concentrate on something which seemed too fantastic to believe, namely that the Currans were in fact covering up the murderer and telling a tissue of lies."

Independent 26 April 2000

Airman Iain Gordon

Iain Hay Gordon was framed and convicted of the murder of Patricia.

"Det Supt John Capstick, who obtained the 'confession', was lying when he told the original trial that Mr Gordon had voluntarily dictated his statement."

Detective 'lied about 1953 killing' - Telegraph

In 2000, Iain Hay Gordon had his sentence overturned.

Who really killed Patricia?

"Patricia Curran's mother, Doris, disapproved of her headstrong daughter's unconventional lifestyle, particularly her relationships with older men."

Anyone recognise this house

"A friend of my Mother who lived in Jordanstown, behind the Curran estate,told the story that Iain Hay Gordon and the brother Desmond were having a homosexual relationship. 

"She said that Patricia was going to blow the whistle on the relationship so the mother murdered her." 

The Patricia Curran Murder

"Ian Hay Gordon ... was a member of a homosexual ring of men who met in the glen area of Whiteabbey. Something that Gordon admitted too and never retracted."

Judge Curran's Daughter

Iain Gordon at the time of his release from prison.

"Desmond was a member of a crusading religious group, Moral Rearmament, into which he tried to recruit Iain Hay Gordon, a rather naive 20-year-old RAF technician, whom he met at the local Presbyterian church...

"Desmond underwent a dramatic conversion to Catholicism five years after his sister's murder and his Orangeman father broke ranks with the loyal order to attend his ordination as a priest in Rome in 1964...

"Now in his 70s, he ministers in a black township just outside Cape Town, South Africa, where he lives in a tiny prefabricated hut with no electricity and is known as 'The Lamp' by his flock."


"Judge Lance Curran, was weighed down by gambling debt...

"Doris Curran, Patricia’s mother, was consigned to a mental hospital after her daughter’s murder and remained there to her death.

"Doris Curran had been brought up in Broadmoor Prison for the Criminally Insane.

"Doris Curran’s father was the Superintendent of the hospital."

Crime Beat: Irish crime: the noir and true | Crime Beat

"Sir Lancelot Curran presided over the trial of Robert McGladdery for the murder of 19-year-old Pearl Gamble, near Newry, in 1961. McGladdery protested his innocence but was found guilty and hanged."

Lancelot Curran - Wikipedia

Who killed Patricia?

Gunshot wounds! Old Belfast 8


Anonymous said...

In this world, everybody wants and needs to be a Somebody: winners

And when things get messy and boring and difficult, these same Somebodies pick no bodies (losers) on whom they can expel their own worst characteristics/lusts.

I doubt that any society has the monopoly on this tendency: and in the Old Testament it is described, where all the people of the village come together and place on a hapless goat, all their own undesirable characteristics. We know what they are, in ourselves, when we are honest...
thus cleansed, the goat is beaten into the wilderness, bearing the sins of the people, who are now feeling very virtuous and cleansed.

To this day, scapegoating happens in all families.

And DSM is there to help the doctors and psychiatrists etc pathologize the patient, leaving the perpetrators free to indulge their own destructive
delusions and addictions.

I wonder the ethnic background of the professionals who comprise the board of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual?

While I was privileged to work with a psychiatrist who tended to diagnose Adjustment Reaction while working with parents to genuinely bring about change in the family system, I am aware of the vast majority who prescribe interminable pharma drugs or treatment techniques which leave the suffering child going from bad to worse.

These people have too many interests to prove and protect, while the child /vulnerable adolescent/young adult slips through all the cracks.
It is downright cruel/monstrous/unconscionable.

Anonymous said...

Thorough re-examination of the evidence by the Forensic Science Service strongly suggested that Patricia was violently stabbed (many times) by her mother. I can safely say what I like about her and Judge Curran because both are dead (and can't bring defamation actions).

The judge was an accessory after the fact, tampering with evidence at the scene. One other person, whom I cannot name for legal reasons, was probably involved as well.

However, the conspirators showed a complete lack of skill. None of the parents' actions made any difference to the police and, had it not been for the interference of the Northern Ireland Government (which took the R.U.C. off the case and rigged the trial as well), they would almost certainly have been charged. Police officers in Northern Ireland, in those days, were a surprisingly decent bunch. Their oath meant something to them. Many in "the Met" were "as bent as a nine-bob note", as people would have said at the time.

Can you imagine the scandal of a High Court judge and his wife being tried for murder and possibly facing the gallows? This simply didn't happen, in those days.

Anonymous said...

Something similar happened in England, when the Government deliberately sabotaged the prosecution of John Bodkin Adams, whom police believe was probably Britain's most prolific serial killer (after Harold Shipman, another doctor whose activities went uninvestigated for decades and who was caught only because he wanted to be).

Adams, a native of Toome in County Antrim and member of the Plymouth Brethren sect, was allegedly the highest paid General Practitioner in Britain in the 1950s. He had many wealthy patients in Eastbourne but, for some strange reason, they kept dying suddenly after he had visited them. Fancy that!

Like the Currans, Adams had political connections. It is believed that his long-term gay lover was the Mayor of Brighton. Even without any string pulling by senior Tories, Adams would probably have been rescued by an Establishment cover up.

The Macmillan Government felt that hanging a doctor would permanently undermine confidence in the medical profession. Macmillan, probably one of the least trustworthy people ever to have occupied 10 Downing Street, had done the same thing with nuclear power, after the Windscale disaster in 1957.

If you ask me, they should have hanged a few more doctors. Then, we might not have had all the N.H.S. scandals we've had over the last thirty years. It's not so much a case of power corrupting. It's more one of power attracting people who are already corrupt at heart.

Anonymous said...

Within a short time of Patricia Curran's "disappearance" being reported by her father, the County Inspector (the R.U.C.'s equivalent of a Superintendant in those days) at Carrickfergus interviewed the judge and several other key figures.

The officer immediately noted in his diary that, although Patricia had not been in contact with her family before returning home, the father knew both on which bus she had travelled and the name of the Queen's University classmate (a young man called Steele, as I recall) who had seen her off at Smithfield Bus Station in Belfast. Therefore, local police were deeply suspicious, from the outset, but also acutely aware of the influence that the Currans had.

The judge had given the game away, within a few hours of the murder, by telephoning Steele's house and, in the course of asking various questions, divulging certain facts about Patricia's whereabouts before her death.

A relative of mine was a police officer in north Belfast in the 1950s and 1960s. He worked with a detective who had been stationed in Carrickfergus at the time of the murder. The consensus in the R.U.C. was that Ian Hay Gordon had been framed by a thug from one of the most corrupt police forces in the U.K.

However, what wasn't certain was the identity of the real murderer. After all, local police officers hadn't been allowed to investigate.

Anonymous said...

Even today, Northern Ireland is one of the most homophobic parts of western Europe. Imagine how much worse it was, sixty years ago. Many members of the public believed that Patricia had uncovered a homosexual affair between her brother and Iain Hay Gordon.

It was, therefore, assumed that the brother (later a Catholic priest in Soweto, near Johannesburg, but at that time a barrister in Belfast) was the murderer and that he was being protected by his father and the rest of the Stormont "Establishment".

The brother wasn't the murderer, although I suppose the detectives, amateur and professional, weren't too far out.

The "gay theory" may have been loosely connected with one of the threats which Capstick made. Capstick was the notorious Metropolitan Police detective, brought in to beat a confession out of the scapegoat, Ian Hay Gordon.

During the interrogation [or should that be "torture"?], Capstick threatened to tell Ian Hay Gordon's mother that the R.A.F. technician had had a homosexual liaison, some time previously.

The fact that Gordon was willing to sign a murder confession rather than allow anyone to think that he was gay says a lot about social attitudes in that era.

There have been suggestions that Lady Curran was mentally unstable. It is also known that she frequently had blazing rows with her daughter because of the latter's choice of male company. For example, while working for a road transport firm during what we would now call a "gap year", Patricia had an affair with one of the drivers. She had other affairs too.

Anonymous said...

To appreciate the significance of these inter-class relationships, one has to realise that the Currans were "pillars of society" in the Whiteabbey and Carrickfergus areas. The judge was a former Unionist MP and former Attorney-General for Northern Ireland. He became a High Court judge and subsequently an Appeal Court judge. He was an elder at Whiteabbey Presbyterian Church. It was ironic that, if Iain Hay Gordon had lodged an appeal in the 1960s, Curran would have heard it!

It is also significant that someone from this upper-middle-class, Unionist, Presbyterian background should have run off to Rome, become a Catholic priest and re-emerged a few years later in South Africa. Those who don't know Northern Ireland may not realise how truly bizzarre Patricia's brother's behaviour seemed. It added to the speculation about his involvement. His actions, in the years after the murder, were almost the equivalent of an Israeli going to work at the headquarters of the P.L.O. in Tunis!

It seems to me that, if he had been guilty of the murder, he would probably not have felt the need to become a Roman Catholic. By doing so, he completely rejected his upbringing and cut himself off from his parents. That has to mean something. I think he was sending them a very big message.

I want to believe that such a message would not be missed today but we seldom learn from the past. Human beings' capacity for evil doesn't diminish, over time.

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