Leeds attacker: 21 year wait for justice

Oliver Coleman.
Oliver Coleman.
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A MAN jailed for a killing commited in Ireland while fighting extradition on a charge of causing grievous bodily harm to a Leeds man who later died, will face justice after 21 years.

Oliver Kevin Stephen Patrick Joseph Coleman, who last year was extradited from Ireland after serving seven of a 12 year manslaughter sentence for a cold blooded shooting in County Offaly, pleaded Guilty at Leeds Crown Court to causing grievous bodily harm to Hugh Raymond O’Gorman outside the Victory Working Men’s Club in Armley,Leeds, in June 1989.

Mr O’Gorman,42, suffered severe injuries in the incident which left him in a coma in hospital until he died from broncho pneumonia 16 months later.

After an investigation into the fight Coleman,now 42, was charged with causing grievous bodily to Mr O’Gorman,

Mr O’Gorman died in hospital in October 1990. At that time English law prevented anyone being charged with a murder, if the person had died moe than a year and a day after an incident. That legislation has since been abolished.

Four days after Mr O’Gorman died, Coleman failed to attend Leeds Crown Court in October 1989 to answer the GBH charge and police launched enquiries to trace his whereabouts. He was ultimately traced to Ireland in about February 1999 and police launched extradition proceedings to return him to West Yorkshire. Coleman was featured in a Yorkshire Television investigative documentary about his whereabouts.

The High Court ordered his extradition to England in April 2002. Coleman appealed that decision to the Supreme Court but it dismissed the appeal.

In August 2003, while fighting extradition from Ireland on the GBH charge, Coleman was sentenced to 12 years for manslaughter after blasting a 20-year-old partygoer to death with a shotgun in County Offaly in 2001. He remained in custody in Ireland until his release last year after serving seven years when he was extradited back to England to face the charge relating to Mr O’Gorman.

Coleman is due to be sentenced at Leeds Crown Court on March 14.

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