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July 23, 2005

Ervine's Comments Condemned

News about Ireland & the Irish

IO 07/23/05 Ervine Loyalist Feud Comments Condemned
ST 07/24/05 De Chastelain Extends Stay To Await IRA Move
SB 07/24/05 Shell Works 'Without Consent': Inspectors
SB 07/24/05 Party Loyalties Split In Battle Over Pipeline
ST 07/24/05 Shell 'Breached' Pipeline Consent
ST 07/24/05 Shoot To Kill Error Echoes Irish Dirty War
SB 07/24/05 Al-Qaeda Man Recruited In Belfast Jailed
ST 07/24/05 Ex-INLA Man May Face Trial In Greece
ST 07/24/05 Emmet Convicted By 'Show Trial', Says Top Judge


Ervine Loyalist Feud Comments Condemned
2005-07-23 19:20:02+01

A senior loyalist politician was condemned tonight after he
forecast the feud between the Ulster Volunteer Force and
the Loyalist Volunteer Force would get worse.

The Alliance Party also hit out at the latest attack by
Progressive Unionist leader David Ervine on the Independent
Monitoring Commission.

East Belfast MLA Naomi Long called on the British
government to take action against the party. Ms Long said:
"David Ervine's comments are surely the final straw for the
UVF ceasefire.

"If they are openly and brazenly stating that that they are
no longer engaged in moving away from paramilitarism and
criminality and instead are intent on escalating their
killing spree with the LVF, Peter Hain (Northern Ireland
Secretary of State) is now under a moral obligation to
declare their ceasefire to be at an end.

"If he fails to do so he jeopardises the basis of the
entire political process."

Her comments came after Mr Ervine was interviewed for BBC
Radio Ulster's Inside Politics.

Asked how much worse the loyalist feud - which has claimed
two lives this month - is likely to get, the PUP leader
replied: "I have absolutely no influence over what is
happening on our streets at the moment. But everyone's best
assessment is that there is much more to come."


De Chastelain Extends Stay To Await IRA Move

Liam Clarke

TWO independent commissioners who supervise decommissioning
have been asked to remain in Ireland this week as
expectation grows of a significant gesture by the IRA.

Although security sources are stressing that there could be
further delays, both General John de Chastelain and Andrew
Sens were asked to stay on in Ireland for the next few days
instead of returning home to America this afternoon as

The British and Irish governments believe the IRA could
move as early as Thursday and Martin McGuinness, Sinn
Fein's chief negotiator, has said he believes the IRA will
make a positive statement on its future.

In preparation for the move, McGuinness, Gerry Adams, and
Martin Ferris, the TD for Kerry North, have resigned from
the IRA's ruling army council. The resignations are part of
a reform of the IRA leadership, first revealed in The
Sunday Times on May 1.

The story was confirmed by Michael McDowell, the minister
for justice, on June 20 at a session of the Irish Peace
Group. He said that McGuinness, Adams and Ferris "are now
in the process of actually trying to get out of" the army
council but would remain in control of the Provisional

McDowell said the change was a "good thing" because it
meant the IRA "is not going to be the centre of their
political struggle in future".

Sean Gerard Hughes, a Co Armagh hardliner, also resigned
from the army council some months ago after losing interest
in the peacetime IRA. Brian Keenan, a former chief of
staff, has also resigned due to ill health.

Security sources believe that the current army council
consists of Thomas "Slab" Murphy, as chief of staff; Brian
Arthurs, the IRA commander in Tyrone; Bernard Fox, a former
hunger striker; Sean "Spike" Murray from Belfast; Martin
Lynch, an Adams loyalist from Belfast; Brian "Ginger"
Gillen, from Belfast and a Dublin man who cannot be named
for legal reasons.

Government officials are stressing that the IRA statement
needs to be definitive and to be matched by a total and
verifiable act of decommissioning. "In short order they are
going to have to do enough to satisfy everybody both in
words and in deeds," said a source, stressing that it would
be better for the IRA to delay the statement rather than to
fall short of what is required.

The IRA statement and possible move on decommissioning is
in response to a call from Adams on April 6. Adams said:
"The way forward is by building political support for
republican and democratic objectives across Ireland and by
winning support for these goals internationally. I want to
use this occasion therefore to appeal to the leadership of
Oglaigh na hEireann (the IRA) to fully embrace and accept
this alternative. Can you take courageous initiatives which
will achieve your aims by purely political and democratic
activity?" The statement, when it comes, will be closely
scrutinised to see whether it moves things on from what has
been said previously. The quality of decommissioning will
also be scrutinised. In the past the IRA has refused to
give General de Chastelain permission to say what weapons
were decommissioned, or to take photographs. But if
decommissioning is completed, an exhaustive inventory will
be given by de Chastelain to the two governments who will
be free to publish it.


Shell Pipeline Works 'Without Consent': Inspectors

24 July 2005 By Pat Leahy

Government inspectors have found that Shell has carried out
unauthorised works at Rossport, Co Mayo, backing up claims
made by the five men imprisoned for their protests against
the Shell pipeline.

A senior official in the Department of Communications,
Marine and Natural Resources wrote to Shell chairman Andy
Pyle on behalf of minister Noel Dempsey yesterday, warning
him about the unauthorised development and demanding an

Officials from the department made their findings - which
have been seen by The Sunday Business Post - after
inspections of the site in Co Mayo last week. They found
that Shell had welded about three kilometres of pipeline
without first obtaining permission from the department.

Each stage of work at the Rossport site must be authorised
in advance by the department.

There are seven stages in all, of which two have been
largely completed. The work carried out was "stage three''
work, but Shell has yet to receive permission from the
department for these works.

Shell did send notification to the department that some
welding work had been carried out, but it was not picked up
by officials, as no permission for that scale of work had
been granted.

A reliable senior source said this weekend that the
findings of the inspectors - who made their report to the
minister last week - had severely undermined trust between
the department and Shell in the future.

"There'll be a lot less taken on faith from now on," the
source said.

"We'll want to verify everything that's happening. The
department has been completely let down by Shell."

In a letter delivered by courier yesterday, a senior
department official told Shell that the company had "acted
outside the terms of the extant consents''.

The department was seeking immediate observations,
following which the minister will decide on further action.

Speaking to The Sunday Business Post this weekend, minister
Dempsey said he regarded the breach of permission as "very

"But there's a legal process and I have to follow legal

"I have to wait for a response from Shell," he said.

The revelation that unauthorised work has been carried out
by Shell bears out some of the arguments made by the
'Rossport Five' - the five local men who have been
imprisoned for refusing to abide by the terms of an
injunction secured by the petroleum giant.


Rossmore Five: Party Loyalties Split In Battle Over

24 July 2005 By Niamh Connolly

Mayo is a hotbed of political rivalry. This has been helped
in no small part by the David-and-Goliath battle between
local landowners and fuel giant Shell over the safety of
the gas pipeline it is building in Rossport in the north-
west of the county.

Protest rallies held yesterday in Dublin and across Mayo
against the jailing of five Mayo farmers for obstructing
Shell's pipeline are providing opposition candidates with
an invaluable early election platform. The five are now in
their third week in prison.

The 'Free the Rossport Five' campaign offers considerable
scope for broadsides on the government's policy towards
Shell - from the safety of the pipeline to tax reliefs and
their exemption from paying royalties to the state.

Two TDs at the centre of the campaign - independent deputy
Jerry Cowley and Fine Gael poll-topper Michael Ring - are
approaching hero status in Mayo for their work on the
campaign. Where one or two are gathered, so too will there
be TDs. Yesterday's rally in Dublin saw Dáil deputies join
busloads of Mayo protesters, following the success of
similar rallies in Castlebar, Ballina and Belmullet.

But Cowley believes it is impolite to even utter the word
'election' in the same breath as the 'Shell to Sea'
campaign, which is being waged to try to force Shell to
build the Corrib gas terminal offshore, meaning there would
be no need for the pipeline.

"Whether it's a vote-winner or a vote-loser, the people in
Mayo are not safe with that pipeline. I don't give a
tinker's curse about anything except doing my job as a
public representative," he said.

Work on the pipeline is currently suspended until a
government ordered safety review is completed.

Fine Gael's two top Mayo deputies - Enda Kenny and Ring -
are on opposite sides of the fence in the pipeline

Ring is making no bones about their difference of opinion.
"If Fine Gael had taken my approach we'd have been leading
the campaign, instead of listening to people who know
nothing about Mayo, but who want to see the gas coming out
of Mayo," he said.

"This way offers no benefits - all Mayo is getting is the

The constituency poll-topper warned that the people "would
make their adjudication'' about Fine Gael's position in two
years' time when a general election is expected.

Ring opposed the Shell pipeline as a local councillor back
in 2001.

"This was a lonely battle in the county as a councillor. I
got criticised by Fianna Fáil and by my own," he said.

"But if Shell had listened to me in 2001 - and if the
council had listened to the assessment of this project by
An Bord Pleanála - they wouldn't have the problems they
have now," said Ring.

"Instead, Shell got the full support of the county council
and of ministers above and beyond the call of duty. We all
agree that we want the gas - but it's how it's brought in
is the question. I believe this is a health and safety

A spokesman for Fine Gael said the party leader believed
there was "one project on the table that has approval, and
that's the one we're trying to deal with''.

Kenny has stated that he supports the Shell project "in the
common good'', but is calling for more health and safety

"There's a little bit of local politics, and everybody is
rushing to be seen to be on the right side locally.

"But Enda says there is one project and to pick another
solution off the shelf is not going to address the issue,"
the FG spokesman said.

The Shell saga had an unexpected twist last week when Henry
Kenny, cathaoirleach of Mayo County Council and brother of
the Fine Gael leader, overturned an earlier unopposed
motion by councillors calling on Shell to process the gas

The motion was laid by Fianna Fáil councillor Tim Quinn.
Fine Gael accused the government party of "trying to be on
all sides''.

Independent Jerry Cowley, who romped home in the 2002
general election well ahead of Enda Kenny, is not so
removed from the political game as to resist calling on the
Fine Gael leader, and Labour leader Pat Rabbitte - "the two
Mayo men'' - to clarify their positions.

Unlike Ring, Kenny has made no appearances at the protests,
and he declined an invitation to appear at yesterday's
rally. Rabbitte did, however, accept an invitation to
yesterday's event, on the basis that he believes the
jailing of the landowners was legally unsound.

A spokesman said the Labour Party was not backing the Shell
to Sea campaign.

So, at least officially, Fine Gael and Labour are singing
from the same hymn sheet, though Rabbitte is likely to come
under strong internal pressure in relation to the party's

Fianna Fáil have their own difficulties, in the shape of
their erstwhile TD Beverley Flynn. Party headquarters felt
compelled to take action against her considerable support
base earlier this summer, and this has not gone down too
well in the constituency.

Flynn's appearance at a Free the Rossport Five protest
rally in Castlebar is sending out mixed signals.

It could, for example, indicate to headquarters that its
only official deputy, John Carty, would face a lonely road
defending the government's policy if things turned nasty.

Cowley was adamant that Flynn would not go against the
line, as she has usually voted with the party - "and she'd
give her two eyes to get back into Fianna Fáil'', he

"She was visible, yes, but not on the platform. That was
only for the optics, because she did not come on to the
platform and say she was in favour of Shell to Sea. She did
not utter those words," said Cowley.

Flynn was unavailable for comment, but her local spokesman
said the TD wanted the five landowners out of prison. "If
Shell to Sea is the only option, Flynn will not rule that
out, but she does not agree that it's the only option," he

So the ground appears wide open for Cowley and Sinn Féin to
lead anti-government sentiment on the Shell controversy,
though Ring will fight the issue -with or without the
official support of Fine Gael.

Sinn Féin, already a force in the constituency since last
year's local elections, will be aiming to build its support
base on the back of the protests. Sinn Féin councillor Dave
Keating topped the poll in Westport Town Council last year.

Indeed, Sinn Féin TD Martin Ferris has been keen to point
out the party's involvement from the early days of the
controversy, and the rallies are providing fertile ground
for further inroads into other parties' support bases.

But Cowley is well aware of his key position, and is
careful to pinpoint Bertie Ahern as the signatory of the
1992 Finance Act, which excluded oil and gas companies from
paying royalties to the state.

Last week, Cowley called for the Public Accounts Committee
to regroup this summer to sanction an investigation into
the role of the Petroleum Affairs Division in the
Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources.

Until there is a full investigation, Cowley insisted, there
should be a complete freeze on the issuing of licences to
oil and gas companies.

"Shell should be a safe distance away from these people,
but this is a 345-bar pressure pipeline and it's within 70
metres of their houses and within a driving distance of 25
metres. This is a unique pipeline - they call it an
'exotic' pipeline, the pressure is so high," said Cowley.

The Mayo TD cited an accident in New Mexico in which a 45-
bar pressure pipeline burst, killing 12 people within 230
metres of the pipeline. "I don't give two damns whether I'm
re-elected, but it's a matter of justice being done for
these people," he said.


Shell 'Breached' Pipeline Consent

Richard Oakley and Scott Millar

THE government has ordered Shell to explain why the oil
company appears to have breached the terms of permission it
was given to carry out work on the controversial Corrib gas
pipeline in Mayo.

Noel Dempsey, the marine minister, has written to the
company demanding the explanation after his inspectors
found that Shell had carried out works other than the
preparatory ones for which it has consent.

"Shell has an opportunity to reply to me on this, but as
far as I am concerned this is very serious," Dempsey said

According to the marine department, it has evidence that at
least 3km of pipeline have been welded together, contrary
to the terms of the consent.

Five Mayo men, the so-called Rossport Five, are in jail for
obstructing work on the pipeline and for being in breach of
a court order directing them to desist. They and other
locals have claimed since June that Shell was breaching the
terms of consent for preparatory work. They argued this
unsuccessfully in court in an attempt to have an injunction
Shell secured in April overturned.

Campaigners said that the department's findings have
vindicated their position and it should lead to the release
of the men from Cloverhill prison.

Brid McGarry, a local landowner who told gardai in June
that Shell was breaching the terms of consent, said: "We
have been saying this all along. The reality is that all
this was raised in court but the judge seemed not to take
it on board and it was the five men who were found to be in

She added: "It is a great thing it has now been clarified."

The Department of the Marine made another embarrassing
climbdown concerning the project last month, when it
emerged that an "independent" risk assessment of the
pipeline was being carried out by a company jointly owned
by Shell and BP. Following receipt of the letter from the
Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources,
Shell E&P Ireland (SEPIL) said: "We acknowledge there may
have been a technical breach of the consent and regretted
it if that proved to be the case.

"The company will continue to work closely with the
department to ensure that no possible departures from the
terms of the minister's consent occur in the future," it

The revelation cheered an estimated 2,000 supporters of the
Rossport Five who gathered in Dublin yesterday. Gerry
Adams, president of Sinn Fein, and a number of TDs were in
attendance. Many of the speakers called not only for the
release of the men but also a review of the deal agreed by
the Irish government in the 1980s to give offshore
exploration rights to companies at low cost, deals which
see rights to natural sources being sold in their entirety
to multinationals which then process them.

Shell could be fined for the breach, but it is more likely
that the marine department will instead consider
introducing a stricter regime and subject the company to
more regular inspections.

At present Shell reports to the department and informs it
of what work it has carried out at the site. The state
could take a much more active role in determining what
works have occurred rather than accepting Shell's word.

It is understood that Shell had permission to do some
welding testing at the site and to bring sections of pipe
to the area. It did not, however, have consent to carry out
actual welding.

It is also understood that one report from the company
informed the department that it had started welding work,
but was overlooked for some time.

Stricter monitoring is unlikely to bring an end to the
standoff between locals opposed to the pipeline and the
company. Campaigners want the gas to be refined offshore
rather than 10km inland.

Shell has a compulsory purchase order for local land,
granted by the marine department in 2002. Frank Fahey, the
then minister, deemed the construction of the pipeline to
be in the national interest, which allowed the CPOs to be

Jerry Cowley, independent TD for Mayo, said the Rossport
Five were likely to continue fighting. "These men were not
taken seriously before they ended up in jail and now they
are; why would they stop?" he said.

"Shell should be told to refine the gas offshore and that
should be the end of it. These men are not opposed to the
project as such, they are opposed to a high-pressure
pipeline transporting it across lands near their homes."


Shoot To Kill Error Echoes Irish Dirty War

When the stakes are high, police have no choice but to use
controversial tactics, say Liam Clarke and Tony Geraghty

The five shots with which a policeman killed a terrorist
suspect in London last week echoed round the world. From
America to Australia and Asia, the killing made headlines
and marked the crossing of a boundary.

Though the days when all British bobbies were thought to be
unarmed have long passed, the clinical and close-quarter
nature of the shooting was unprecedented in Britain. Police
have previously shot men believed to be dangerous, but they
have not stood over a prostrate figure and unloaded five
rounds into him from point-blank range. To compound matters
the police admitted yesterday he had nothing to do with the
terror attacks.

However, London has never before faced suicide bombers. The
stakes have become much higher, forcing new rules of

Friday's killing was a direct result of aggressive new
guidelines from Scotland Yard based on the experience of
Israel and Sri Lanka in dealing with suicide bombers.
British officers are now under instructions to shoot
suspects in the head if they are believed to be suicide
bombers posing an imminent danger.

A policy of "shoot-to-kill" echoes the darkest days of the
Northern Irish troubles. And it raises worrying questions
when applied in the much larger and more mixed communities
of mainland Britain, and when the suspected terrorists are
much more elusive and shadowy.

Today's Muslim leaders, although supportive of law and
order, are worried and demanding explanations. "There may
well be reasons why the police felt it necessary to unload
five shots into the man and shoot him dead, but they need
to make those reasons clear," said Inayat Bunglawala of the
Muslim Council of Britain.

Prophetically, a former senior Special Branch officer from
Northern Ireland said: "I suspect that the authorities in
England will make all the same mistakes as we did."

Those errors include an operation in Gibraltar in 1988 when
the SAS killed three IRA members in the belief that they
were about to detonate a radio-controlled bomb. In reality
the explosives were miles away and the three suspects were
carrying no radio equipment.

Although the Gibraltar coroner's court ruled that the
killings had been lawful, the European Court of Human
Rights later criticised the "lack of degree of caution in
the use of firearms" by the SAS.

Specialist security forces, such as the recently formed
Special Reconnaissance Regiment (SRR), which has been
drafted in to combat the present terror threat, are
generally protected by law if they shoot first and ask
questions later, provided they believe the suspect was a
threat to the lives of others.

This proved to be the case when Diarmuid O'Neill, an
unarmed IRA man, was shot dead in his Hammersmith flat in
1996. The officer who pulled the trigger told a coroner's
court: "His body language was aggressive, he leaned towards
me." The jury returned a verdict of lawful killing.

But the new policy to cope with suicide attacks is a step
further. With suicide bombers there is no question of
trying to stop suspects by wounding them: only immediate
execution will do.

The threat and risks run far wider than London. Specialist
firearms officers are being deployed on secondment to MI5,
which is opening eight offices in cities including Glasgow,
Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Birmingham. The aim is to
increase the surveillance of terrorist suspects and to
penetrate radical networks with informants.

The highly secretive SRR draws on members of the 14th
Intelligence Company, and the Force Research Unit (FRU),
which handled all military intelligence informers in
Northern Ireland.

If the pattern of Northern Ireland is repeated, Asian
servicemen will be encouraged to volunteer for covert
duties. Some may "resign" from the army to return to their
communities as undercover agents.

The past two weeks have given Britons a test of what is
potentially in store in the weeks, months, even years
ahead. It is a dangerous balance for everyone.

"You can't be afraid to act if life is at stake," said a
former Northern Ireland Special Branch officer. "But if you
alienate people you can hand the terrorists a long-term
support base from which to operate."


Al-Qaeda Man Recruited In Belfast Is Jailed In Algeria

24 July 2005 By Barry O'Kelly

A man recruited by al-Qaeda in Ireland has been jailed in
Algeria for running an extremist organisation.

Mohamed Meguerba, 38, who lived in Ranelagh, Dublin and
married an Irish woman, was given a ten-year sentence two
weeks ago.

He allegedly told interrogators in Algiers that he joined
al-Qaeda following a meeting at a mosque in Belfast in

Meguerba lived in Dublin for seven years, before leaving to
join a training camp run by associates of Osama bin Laden
in Afghanistan.

He was later captured by police in Algiers in 2003 and
quickly supplied a detailed account of a plot to spread the
deadly poison ricin on buildings in London. Ricin is a
cheap, easily produced toxin for which there is no
treatment or vaccine.

Meguerba's statement, allegedly extracted under torture,
led to his conviction for setting up and belonging to an
outlawed organisation in Algeria. The statement also
identified eight people who were claimed to have been
behind the poison plot. This led to a raid on a London flat
in which detectives found the paraphernalia for making

One of those arrested in the raids, Kamel Bourgass, 31, was
jailed for 17 years in April for conspiring to cause a
public nuisance. He was also jailed for life for killing a
police officer during the raid.

Detectives believe he was planning to smear the chemical,
or other poisons, on the door handles of cars and buildings
in the Holloway Road area of north London.

Last week, Bourgass lost an appeal against his life
sentence. His lawyers had argued in the Court of Appeal
sitting at Woolwich Crown Court that details about the
ricin plot should not have been used in the separate murder

Gardai are believed to have investigated associates of
Meguerba when the 27-page statement obtained by Algerian
police emerged in early 2003. The statement outlines his
allegedly senior role in organising attacks in Europe. It
reportedly includes details of his so-called line manager,
Abu 'The Doctor' Doha, an Algerian militant leader with
links to bin Laden, and who is currently being held in
prison in London.


Ex-INLA Man May Face Trial In Greece

Scott Millar

A FORMER republican paramilitary and alleged drug
trafficker faces extradition from Holland to Greece, where
he is wanted in connection with a shipment of €50m (£37.4m)
worth of cannabis.

Tommy Savage, 55, from north Dublin, was arrested last
Wednesday in Amsterdam over allegedly trying to import more
than four tons of cannabis into Athens in 1997.

Savage's family say the arrest is illegal and that he has
already faced the charges. They say the former INLA member
is the victim of a campaign by the Dutch authorities to
force him out of the country. Savage has been resident in
the Dutch capital for 14 years and runs a small hotel. He
says he halted all criminal activity years ago.

His son Dominic, who has travelled to Amsterdam to help his
father, called upon Irish authorities to intervene.

"Tom has been involved in things in the past which he does
not attempt to hide," said Dominic Savage. "But he swears
he has never been to Greece and he faced these charges last
year. That time he walked from court a free man, so how can
they pick him up again on the same charges and say they
will deport him by Wednesday? "He faces no charges in
Ireland and deserves some form of fair legal process as a
citizen of the republic."

The Greek authorities maintain that Savage was the main
player in the importation attempt, aboard the ship Mare,
and was planning to distribute cannabis throughout western

Nicknamed the Zombie by tabloid newspapers, Savage has a
long history of paramilitary and criminal activity.

The Department of Justice said: "The minister has no
function in relation to European arrest warrants


Emmet Convicted By 'Show Trial', Says Top Judge

Dearbhail McDonald

IRELAND'S most famous patriot was the victim of a
miscarriage of justice, according to Adrian Hardiman, the
Supreme Court judge.

For more than 200 years it has been accepted that Robert
Emmet, a 25-year-old Protestant who was beheaded in 1803,
was guilty of treason for leading a failed rebellion
against British rule. But Hardiman has re-examined the
famous trial and says there was insufficient evidence to
convict him.

"In all received versions of Emmet's rebellion, his trial
features solely as the occasion of his celebrated speech,
but the trial itself has been little studied," the Supreme
Court judge said.

Hardiman believes that the Crown knew its case against
Emmet was thin but was determined to convict him. "The
government was immensely excited at the idea of portraying
him as the lynchpin of the rebellion. They were
preoccupied, however, with their perception that there was
so little hard evidence against him that he might well be
acquitted if they put him on trial."

Hardiman's review of the case, published in History
Ireland, concludes that Emmet was condemned to death after
little more than a "show trial". Emmet's lawyers agreed not
to mount a defence even though the prosecution could not
even prove that several incriminating letters to Sarah
Curran, on which their case was based, were written in
Emmet's hand.

Hardiman believes Emmet's conviction was a "virtual
certainty" because his jury was misdirected on the
definition of treason. Emmet's own lawyers let him down on
this point. "One of the obvious defects in Emmet's defence
was the omission to take any point at all as to whether the
activities of Emmet constituted treason as alleged in the
indictment," he said.

But other experts say a good defence would have made little
difference. "From a legal point of view, this is
groundbreaking work," said Patrick Geoghegan, professor of
modern history at Trinity College Dublin and Emmet's
biographer. "Although he was guilty and had committed
treason, the trial was undoubtedly unfair and that hasn't
been analysed in detail before. But even if his defence
hadn't sold him out, it would have made little difference.
Emmet knew he was going to be found guilty."

But Hardiman says the Crown was afraid the trial would
collapse, and a good legal team might have made a
difference. "Although it might be said that Emmet would
very likely have been convicted even if he had been
defended by honest and competent counsel, and allowed to
make whatever defence he wished, I think it is too easy to
jump to this conclusion," he said.

Emmet was an unlikely nationalist rebel leader who led an
abortive rebellion against British rule in the summer of
1803. He was captured on August 25 near Harold's Cross. He
was tried for treason and on September 20 he was beheaded.

After he was sentenced, Emmet delivered a rousing speech,
which secured his posthumous fame. "Let no man write my
epitaph," he said in a speech from the dock. "When my
country takes her place among the nations of the earth,
then, and not till then, let my epitaph be written."

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