Two republicans held liable for the Omagh bombing are set to go to the UK’s highest court in a new bid to overturn the verdict.
Colm Murphy and Seamus Daly have been found responsible for the Real IRA atrocity following two separate civil trials in Belfast.
But after senior judges rejected their latest appeal, lawyers for both men are now preparing to ask the Supreme Court in London to hear their case.
Murphy and Daly currently face a £1.6 million damages award made against them and two other suspects following a landmark civil action.
Twenty-nine people, including the mother of unborn twins, were killed in the August 1998 outrage.
No-one has ever been convicted of carrying out the bombing in a criminal court.
Counsel for Murphy and Daly asked judges yesterday to certify points of law of general public importance to take to the Supreme Court.
Resisting the application, counsel for the Omagh families, Brett Lockhart QC, argued that no point of general public importance had been raised.
“What the court is being asked to do is have a second review of the facts,” he said.
Refusing to certify the case, Lord Justice Higgins, sitting with Lord Justices Girvan and Coghlin, confirmed: “We will leave it to the Supreme Court to consider whether there’s a point of law on the grounds worthy of consideration.”
Outside court, lawyers for the two defendants confirmed their intention to now petition for a hearing.