By Gráinne Ní Aodha, PA
Domestic abuse claims against Derry senior football manager Rory Gallagher were not pursued in the courts due to a lack of evidence.
Police had investigated allegations of domestic abuse made against Mr Gallagher, who has responded to claims made against him this week by his estranged wife.
Nicola Gallagher detailed a number of alleged instances of physical abuse over a 24-year period, which she claimed began when she was a teenager.
In a Facebook post published on Tuesday, she called on anyone who had suffered domestic abuse to “speak out”, stating that “silence isn’t the answer”.
The PSNI had investigated a number of reported incidents and files were submitted to the North’s Public Prosecution Service (PPS).
The PPS received two investigation files from the PSNI in January and June 2022, but it was concluded that there was insufficient evidence to pursue the matter in the courts.
Mr Gallagher responded to the “serious” allegations made against him on Thursday, stating that they “have been investigated and dealt with by the relevant authorities”.
“Our marriage broke down over four years ago.
“Those closest to our family are well aware of the reasons for the breakdown of our marriage and the continued issues we have faced since that time.
“My focus over the past four years has been to protect our children from the ongoing turmoil in our family.
“I have left this matter in the hands of my legal team and ask that the privacy of our family is respected at this time,” he said in a statement issued by his solicitors.
Mr Gallagher’s Derry side is due to take on Armagh in the Ulster senior football final this Sunday at 4pm.
In a statement, Ulster GAA’s provincial secretary and chief executive Brian McAvoy condemned domestic abuse and encouraged victims to seek support.
“While we cannot comment or make judgement on any specific allegation or allegations, Ulster GAA does not condone any form of domestic violence,” he said.
“We are proud to have joined with White Ribbon NI in pledging to never commit, condone or remain silent about violence against women.
“We encourage and support anyone who has been a victim of such abuse not to suffer in silence but to avail of the statutory and voluntary support services that are available in the community.”