Evening top 5: Philip Cairns case, Stakeknife probe and plane debris found off Antrim

The top stories of the day on Newstalk.com

New lines of inquiry opened in case of missing schoolboy Philip Cairns

Gardaí believe they may have made a breakthrough in the case of missing schoolboy Philip Cairns.

Philip disappeared in October 1986 while walking to school in south Dublin. His schoolbag was found in an alley close to his Rathfarnham home six days later.

No trace of the 13-year-old has ever been found, despite repeated appeals for information. 

***

Citizens' Assembly on 8th Amendment is 'absolutely not a stalling tactic' - Simon Harris

Minister for Health Simon Harris has denied that setting up a Citizens' Assembly to consider repealing the 8th Amendment on abortion is a stalling tactic.

An UN ruling published yesterday called Ireland’s stance on abortion cruel, inhuman and degrading in its treatment of women with non-viable pregnancies. 

Asked about the judgment today, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said it was important to determine "what level of consensus there might be for change" to the legislation. 

***

Police in North announce details of investigation into 'Stakeknife' agent

The police service in the North has said it will not interfere with an investigation into a high-ranking British army agent in the IRA.

The agent, known by his code name Stakeknife, has been linked to more than 50 murders.

The probe into the crimes is to be funded by the PSNI but staffed by external officers.

***

Fatalities feared as debris is found in search for aircraft off Northern Irish coast

Debris has been found in the search for a missing aircraft off the coast of Antrim. 

The debris was located north of Glenarm by a yacht that had responded to the Mayday relay broadcast and joined the search efforts, the UK Coastguard said. 

Two passengers are believed to have been on board the plane, which had taken off yesterday from Derry Airport.

***

Gardaí to review road traffic prosecutions following NCT charge mix-up

Motorists without NCT certificates were wrongly prosecuted after having already paid fixed charge penalties, it has emerged.

Driving without a valid certificate became an offence attracting up to three penalty points in 2014. 

Gardaí are to examine prosecutions over all fixed charge offences following the discovery.