Cold Case Review: Sophie Toscan du Plantier
Crime Guy can at last report a significant new development in the violent death of Sophie in West Cork, Ireland. Will the case finally be unlocked?
News broke last week that the Irish police are to conduct a full review of thousands of documents and forensic evidence to try and break open the killing of French film producer Sophie Toscan du Plantier in West Cork in December 1996.
The most interesting aspect of the cold case review, which has been trailed for months in the Irish press, is that Drew Harris, the Garda Commissioner, believes there is new information to be uncovered. For the past several months, Detective Superintendent Des McTiernan has been leading a preliminary review which has found that there are grounds for a full-scale cold case review which will most likely run into 2023. It’s not the first time this has been done, but with the emotional distance, it now being 25 years since Sophie was killed, and new techniques, especially around DNA analysis, never has there been more hope. This new review will be led out of Bantry Garda station. It will re-interview all witnesses, including local suspect Ian Bailey and his former partner Jules Thomas. Ian Bailey himself has also pushed for a review, as has the family of Sophie.
Regular readers will know that I came across this case for the first time via the excellent Sky Crime documentary made by the legendary Jim Sheridan. Jim has taken this opportunity to confirm that he is making a feature-length bonus episode setting out new information his team have uncovered in the period since he made the original series. Jim is a really genuine character who, like most of us, has become obsessed with this case and the colourful characters surrounding it. He has made some strong local connections and has submitted information to the police.
Crime Guy will watch the investigation with interest and report on any significant revelations over the coming year. Thanks to everyone who has commented here, and please keep your theories and questions coming.