News about the Irish & Irish American culture, music, news, sports. This is hosted by the Irish Aires radio show on KPFT-FM 90.1 in Houston, Texas (a Pacifica community radio station)

May 05, 2006

Republicans Recall Hunger Strike

To Index of Monthly Archives
To May 2006 Index
To receive this news via email, click HERE.
No Message is necessary.
To Get RSS Feed for Irish Aires News click HERE
(Paste into a News

News about Ireland and the Irish

BB 05/05/06 Republicans Recall Hunger Strike
SF 05/05/06 Dublin Gather To Mark 25th Annvrsry Of Sands’ Death
TJ 05/05/06 25 Yrs Later, Irish Hunger Strikers Deaths Still Resonate
SF 05/05/06 Irish Republicans Face The Future With Confidence
BN 05/05/06 Unionists Furious At Hunger Strike 'Jamboree'
IT 05/05/06 Shell Apologises Over Jailing Of Five Mayo Men
BB 05/05/06 Hain Unaffected By PM's Reshuffle
IT 05/05/06 McDonnell Urges Blair To Meet Father Of UVF Victim
BB 05/05/06 Ex-Wife Pays Husband's LVF Debt
BB 05/05/06 DUP: Charities 'Launder Dirty Money'
BN 05/05/06 Irish 9/11 Victim's Family Welcomes Life Sentence
BN 05/05/06 Scottish Students Flying Into Prostitution - Gardaí


Republicans Recall Hunger Strike

Sinn Fein leaders have been marking the 25th anniversary of
the death of IRA hunger striker Bobby Sands.

He was the first of 10 republicans to die during the 1981
campaign to win political status in the Maze prison.

The 27-year-old was elected MP for Fermanagh and South
Tyrone the month before his death.

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams said the hunger strike had
been a "watershed", with his party's growth in "no small
measure" due to events in the prison.

Mr Adams said it was a time to "reflect on the lessons of
the past".

Speaking on Friday, as he laid a wreath in memory of Sands,
at Hackballscross in County Louth, Mr Adams said: "The
enduring legacy of the hunger strikers is to be found all
around us."

Senior party figures including Martin McGuinness and the
Sinn Fein MP, Michelle Gildernew, joined Sands's former
cell mates at a memorial on the site of the former Maze

The Sands family were expected to hold their own memorial.

BBC Northern Ireland political editor Mark Devenport said
the importance of the hunger strike to Irish republicanism
"cannot be overestimated".

"The prisoners took on Margaret Thatcher in a bid to change
their conditions inside jail," he said.

"But by securing election as an MP the month before he
died, Bobby Sands also propelled republicans towards an
ever greater involvement in fighting elections."

Bobby Sands began a hunger strike in support of political
status on 1 March. On 11 April he won the Fermanagh and
South Tyrone by-election.

He died on 5 May, the 66th day of his fast. Riots followed
on both sides of the border and 100,000 attended his

The hunger strike ended eventually on 3 October after the
deaths of 10 republicans. All prisoners were then allowed
to wear their own clothes.

Republicans revere the hunger strikers as martyrs, but
others take a different view.

Roberta Guiney, whose husband and son were killed in riots
sparked by Sands's death, told the BBC her family would
still be with her if it had not been for the hunger strike.

Eric Guiney, 45, and his son Desmond, 14, died three days
after their milk lorry crashed following an incident in
which it was stoned by a crowd of people at the junction of
New Lodge Road and Antrim Road in Belfast.

'Propaganda' concerns

DUP MP Nigel Dodds said he was furious at the government
"for permitting the former Maze prison to be used for this
republican jamboree".

"After the farcical collapse of the terrorist amnesty
legislation, I thought that the government had learnt its
lesson. Patently they have not."

He added: "The government ought to be ashamed of themselves
for allowing their property to be used in a way that is
grossly offensive to the greater number of people in
Northern Ireland."

Ulster Unionist leader Sir Reg Empey expressed concern that
the hospital at the former jail could end up being used as
"a republican shrine".

The Ulster Unionists have so far not joined a cross party
panel on the Maze because they are seeking assurances about
the future role of the interpretive centre planned for the

Sir Reg said the centre is meant to be a place for conflict
transformation "not a platform for republican propaganda".

The Northern Ireland Office Minister David Hanson is due to
meet members of the Maze panel for a briefing on the future
of the project on Monday.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/05 14:51:59 GMT


Dublin Republicans Gather To Mark The 25th Anniversary Of The Death Of Bobby Sands MP

Published: 5 May, 2006

Sinn Féin MEP Mary Lou McDonald, Councillor Larry O'Toole
and Sean Crowe TD will join republicans across Dublin city
today for a series of events to mark the 25th anniversary
of the death of Bobby Sands after 66 days on hunger strike.
Dublin Sinn Féin will hold a vigil at the GPO on O'Connell
Street at 1.30pm and vigils will also take place across
Dublin city and county this evening. Dublin Councillor
Larry O'Toole has invited Dubliners to attend these events
and remember Bobby Sands and the 1981 Hunger Strikers.

Speaking in Dublin this morning Councillor Larry O'Toole

"Today marks the 25th anniversary of the death of Bobby
Sands after 66 days on hunger strike and throughout Ireland
people will gather to remember the courage and sacrifice of
the Hunger Strikers.

"For eight long months in 1981 the world witnessed
extraordinary scenes as Bobby Sands, Francis Hughes, Patsy
O'Hara, Raymond McCreesh, Joe McDonnell, Martin Hurson,
Kevin Lynch, Kieran Doherty, Tom McElwee and Michael Devine
died slow, agonizing deaths on Hunger Strike in the H-
Blocks of Long Kesh.

"The conditions which led to the Hunger Strikes were
created when the British government, supported by the Irish
government, tried to criminalise Irish republicans. But the
republican prisoners - young women in Armagh jail and young
men in the H-Blocks - refused to be criminalised. And in
extraordinary circumstances they took on the might of the
British state.

"In the course of their protest the hunger strikers smashed
British policy. Their legacy is still unfolding and their
idealism remains as an example to the rest of us.

"Twenty five years ago, while the establishment sat in
silence, Dublin city centre came to a standstill as people
learned of the death of Bobby Sands. Thousands of Dubliners
stopped work, young people walked out of school, many
businesses closed and tens of thousands took to the

"I want to invite people across Dublin to attend
commemorations across Dublin today to mark the 25th
anniversary of the death of Bobby Sands." ENDS


In Dublin, Sinn Féin will hold a vigil outside the GPO on
O'Connell Street at 1.30pm. Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald
and Councillor Larry O'Toole will be available to speak to
media at the event.

This evening between 5.30pm and 6.30pm Sinn Féin will hold
a series of vigils on Drimnagh Road, Dolphin's Barn Bridge
, Balbriggan Main Street and Neilstown Road.

South Dublin Sinn Féin will hold a black flag vigil at the
Luas Bridge in Dundrum at 6pm.

Vigil 7pm Donaghmede Shopping Centreuu


25 Years Later, Irish Hunger Strikers Deaths Still Resonate

By Gerald McKinstry
The Journal News
Peter Carr/The Journal News

Brian Pearson holds a portrait of Bobby Sands on Wednesday
in his Pearl River home. Pearson was a prison inmate friend
of Sands, who died at age 27 in the 1981 hunger strikes
protesting the presence of English troops in Northern

(Original publication: May 5, 2006)


The deaths of a group of Irish revolutionaries 25 years ago
continue to nourish those who want peace and a unified

Bobby Sands captivated the world during a 66-day hunger
strike in a British prison in Northern Ireland. Sands and
nine others starved themselves to death in an effort to be
treated as political prisoners and garner attention to
their plight.

Sands, a 27-year-old Belfast native, died on May 5, 1981;
nine others died in the months following.

For many of the Lower Hudson Valley's large Irish and
Irish-American community, the hunger strikes remain a
significant chapter in that long history of struggles
between those who favor continued British rule of Northern
Ireland and those who want a united Ireland.

The hunger strikes galvanized divisions among many Irish
and the British government. Some say the strikers were
martyrs who catapulted the issue onto the world's stage and
led to the rise of Sinn Fein, the political ally of the
Irish Republican Army.

But opponents regarded them as terrorists or, at best,

"It was the hunger strikes that brought the whole drama to
a heightened level of attention. I think it was a key
turning point," said Christopher Cahill, executive director
of the Institute for American Irish Studies at Pace
University. "It kind of made the situation unavoidable on
an international level. ... What it did was make it very
difficult to look at these people simply as criminals. It
showed a passionate commitment to the cause."

Sands began his hunger strike on March 1, 1981. It was his
second attempt, and Sands and the others staggered their
efforts to call maximum attention to their deaths.

The nine others who died were Michael Devine, Kiernan
Doherty, Francis Hughes, Martin Hurson, Kevin Lynch,
Raymond McCreesh, Joe McDonnell, Thomas McElwee and Patsy

Sands, who joined the IRA as a teenager, had served five
years of a 14-year sentence for gun possession. Besides
being the first to die, he was a leader in the prison and
involved in previous negotiations with British authorities.
Sands also was elected a minister of Parliament three weeks
before he died, garnering more than 30,000 votes.

Brian Pearson spent more than a decade in Long Kesh, the
Northern Ireland prison where all of the hunger strikers
died. Pearson, who was charged with driving the getaway car
in an IRA bombing, was released in 1988.

The 55-year-old Pearl River man first met Sands in 1977 in
prison and remembered him as a concerned and charismatic
man who was "a recognized leader."

Pearson said the prisoners at Long Kesh — also known as The
Maze, after its official English name of HM Prison Maze —
were subject to constant abuse and brutality by prison
guards as part of a plan to demoralize and "break the
backbone of the IRA."

"This was a genuine attempt by (British Prime Minister)
Margaret Thatcher to break these guys once and for all," he
said, adding that it was believed people would be less
sympathetic to the IRA if they were viewed as criminals
rather than soldiers fighting for a cause. "It was
significant that our struggle for peace and justice and
unity was not criminalized. It was a just cause."

Pearson said there was a command structure among prisoners
and the strike took years to organize. He said hundreds of
inmates were considered, but only the healthiest and
strongest were selected. Others were expected to get
information out to the public.

"On reflection, I don't think these guys wanted to die," he
said. "They thought they were going to push this as far as
they possibly could. ... The whole idea was to bring this
to a head."

At his home Wednesday, Pearson pulled out a copy of Sands'
diary, a series of entries originally written on toilet
paper that chronicled the first 17 days of his hunger
strike; the last entry was March 17, 1981.

"I always keep this close to me, it means a lot to me,"
Pearson said, "because I just know how they felt. It was a
terrible situation to be in."

When word of Sands' death spread, people in Ireland and
Northern Ireland protested in the streets, waving signs and
pictures of the strikers. Days of rioting also ensued and
tens of thousands of people lined up for Sands' funeral. In
Manhattan, frequent protests were held at the British

James Grogan, a Tipperary man who lives in Yonkers, was a
regular at those demonstrations. The 81-year-old said the
peaceful gatherings attracted hundreds, sometimes thousands
of people, carrying banners, big and small.

"They were letting these people die and we were trying to
stop it. They should have let the prisoners out and give
them what they wanted," Grogan said yesterday. "It didn't

James Teague, a 75-year-old Blauvelt man from County
Tyrone, remembered people marching with signs and coffins
to the United Nations during that time.

"It was a surprise to everyone that the British government
let them all die," said Teague, president of the MacBride
chapter of Irish Northern Aid, who is being honored at a
memorial tonight.

Cy Hughes, a Nanuet man who is vice president of the
MacBride chapter, said it was important to remember the
sacrifices that Sands and the others made.

"You can't allow this to die because a man gave up his life
for the freedom of Ireland," Hughes said. "In order for us
to carry that on, we have to honor him every year. I hope
we never forget; it's so important. History like that
should never be forgotten."


Irish Republicans Face The Future With Confidence

Published: 5 May, 2006

Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams MP is in County Louth and
Meath today. This morning he laid a wreath at a republican
memorial at Hackballscross in memory of Bobby Sands MP who
died on this day 25 years ago after 66 days on hunger

Mr. Adams said:

"Today 25 years ago Bobby Sands died on Hunger Strike. He
was the first of ten republican prisoners to die that
terrible summer. Almost 50 other people, among them three
children struck by plastic bullets, died during that time.
It is clear 25 years later that the hunger strikers hold a
special place in the hearts of many people.

"Their huge generosity of spirit, self sacrifice and
unselfishness have made Bobby Sands and his 9 comrades role
models for Irish republicans everywhere. Their titanic
battle against great odds and over five difficult,
harrowing years, caught the imagination and touched the
hearts of millions.

"The determination of the men in the H Blocks and the women
prisoners in Armagh ultimately defeated the British
government's criminalisation strategy. The enduring legacy
of the hunger strikers is to be found all around us. Like
the Easter Rising 65 years earlier it is a watershed in
modern Irish history. The political growth of Sinn Féin and
of Irish republicanism is in no small measure a result of
their courage.

"But more importantly, their legacy is to be found in the
peace process and the positive transformation it has
wrought in Irish society in recent years. That process of
change continues. It is taking place every single day. For
many the twenty fifth anniversary of the deaths of the H
Block hunger strikers will be a personal as well as a
political time of remembrance. But for everyone interested
in freedom and justice and peace in Ireland it is a time to
reflect on the lessons of the past and to commit to
continuing the struggle to achieve a free, democratic and
united Ireland.

"And I believe that we will succeed in doing that - not
least because of the example set by Bobby Sands and his
comrades. Bobby Sands commenced the hunger strike on 1
March I981. He was elected an MP and died on 5 May after 66
days without food.

"He was followed by Francie Hughes, 59 days; Patsy O Hara,
61 days; Raymond McCreesh, 61 days; Joe McDonnell, 61 days;
Martin Hurson, 46 days; Kevin Lynch, 71 days; Kieran
Doherty, then a TD, 73 days; Tom McElwee, 62 days; and
Michael Devine, 60 days.

"In 1916 James Connolly wrote of the men and women of the
Easter rising; "Never had man or woman a grander cause,
never was a cause more grandly served". This remark could
have been written for Bobby and his comrades.

"Despite the great privations and brutal conditions Bobby
never lost his faith in people or his determination to look
to the future. Twenty-five years after his death Irish
republicans face that future with confidence." ENDS


Unionists Furious At Hunger Strike 'Jamboree'

05/05/2006 - 17:13:27

The British government was told to hang its head in shame
tonight after Irish republicans held a commemoration at the
former Maze Prison to 10 IRA and INLA prisoners who died on
hunger strike.

Democratic Unionist MP Nigel Dodds was furious that
republicans were allowed to stage a ceremony in the former
jail to mark the 25th anniversary of hunger striker Bobby
Sands' death.

As republicans took part in a series of weekend events
across Ireland, Mr Dodds also accused Sinn Féin leaders of
glorifying terrorism.

"To say that I am furious at the Government for permitting
the former Maze Prison to be used for this republican
jamboree would be an exaggeration," the North Belfast MP

"After the farcical collapse of the terrorist amnesty
legislation, I thought that the Government had learnt its
lesson. Patently they have not.

"They are still prepared to put the terrorists' interests
ahead of those of the victim. What sort of a warped policy
is this to pursue?

"The Government ought to be ashamed of themselves for
allowing their property to be used in a way that is grossly
offensive to the greater number of people in Northern

Sinn Féin MPs Martin McGuinness and Michelle Gildernew
joined ex-prisoners Brendan "Bik" McFarlane and Jake
Jackson for a ceremony which included a minute's silence
and readings from Bobby Sands' writings.

Seven IRA prisoners and three from the Irish National
Liberation Army died during the 1981 hunger strike in an
attempt to force British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's
government to recognise them as political prisoners.

Bobby Sands was the first to refuse food in March 1981 and
the first to die.

He was also elected an MP for Fermanagh and South Tyrone
shortly before his death in a by-election which sent
shockwaves through British politics.

The hunger strike ended in October after a number of
families sanctioned medical intervention to save prisoners'

At a commemoration today at Hackballscross, Co Louth, Gerry
Adams claimed Sinn Féin's electoral success was in no small
measure helped by the hunger strikers.

Black flag vigils were also held along main roads in west
Belfast and in Dublin, Sinn Féin MEP Mary Lou McDonald took
part in an event outside the GPO.

Mr McGuinness participated in a march and rally tonight in
Derry alongside fellow Assembly member, Raymond McCartney
who took part in the first Maze hunger strike in 1980.

Today's events were criticised by the youth wing of the
Ulster Unionist Party which dubbed them hate vigils.

Mr Dodds said while republicans chose to lionise IRA hunger
strikers, the Democratic Unionists remembered the
prisoners' victims.

"For a party that likes to talk about the future, Sinn
Féin/IRA have today raked up the past and, in the process,
insulted law abiding people all over Northern Ireland," the
former Stormont minister said.

"In a repeat of what they always done, Sinn Féin/IRA have
through this event, tried to glorify and lionise men who
weren't freedom fighters or martyrs as republicans might
have us believe but convicted murderers, gangsters and

Mr McGuinness insisted today his thoughts were not only on
the hunger strikers but all those who died during the

"We are not just on this day thinking of our own suffering,
or of our own people, we are thinking of everyone and of
how we can use our experiences to benefit the whole of
society," he said.

"I say that as someone who is willing to stretch out the
hand of friendship to those who were previously enemies of

"This is a new time.

"This is a new situation and I think there is a real sense
throughout the island of Ireland that we are moving to
better times.

"What we have to do is keep that going whilst at the same
time be very conscious of our responsibilities to remember
the past and to remember all of those who lost their


Shell Apologises Over Jailing Of Five Mayo Men

By Elaine Edwards Last updated: 04-05-06, 16:41

Shell Ireland has apologised over the imprisonment of five
men for contempt of court over their protest against the
controversial Corrib gas pipeline and said it regrets the
part it played in their jailing and the hurt it caused the
local community.

Mistakes have been made. We regret the part that we played
in the jailing of the five men last summer. For the hurt
that this caused the local community I am sorry.

Andy Pyle, Shell E&P Ireland

The "Rossport Five" - brothers Philip and Vincent McGrath,
Willie Corduff, Micheál Ó Seighin and James Brendan Philbin
- served 94 days in jail last year because they breached
court orders restraining interference with the pipeline.

In a statement today, Shell has said it will adhere to all
the safety recommendations put forward in an independent
review of the proposed Corrib pipeline.

A series of safety measures in relation to the
controversial project made by the Corrib technical advisory
group (Tag) were approved by the Minister for
Communciations, Marine and Natural Resources, Noel Dempsey,

They include limiting the gas pressure in the nine-
kilometre onshore pipeline, and modification of an
isolation valve.

Shell E&P Ireland (SEPIL) said it welcomes the publication
of the final report of the Independent Safety Review and
"fully accepts all recommendations therein".

It said the report was "an important step towards
addressing the safety concerns surrounding the Corrib gas

"The company has also announced that it will fully adhere
to all of the recommendations contained in the review and
requested by Minister Dempsey."

The statement added: "SEPIL is pleased that the report of
the Independent Safety Review stated that proper
consideration was given to safety issues in the selection
process for the preferred design option and the locations
of the landfall, pipeline route and terminal."

Andy Pyle, managing director of Shell E&P Ireland, said: "I
hope that the publication of today's report and our
commitment to meet all of the recommendations will mark a
turning point in this project and give an impetus to the
mediation process being led by Mr Peter Cassells."

Mr Pyle said the company is fully committed to mediation
and believes that "face to face dialogue is the only way

"Mistakes have been made. We regret the part that we played
in the jailing of the five men last summer. For the hurt
that this caused the local community I am sorry," he said.

"We cannot change the past but we have learned from it. The
Corrib gas partners are fully committed to the project;
however, we can only succeed in partnership with the local
community, and I hope that we can all now move forward
together so that the full benefits of the project to Erris,
to Mayo and to Ireland can be realised."

© 2006


Hain Unaffected By PM's Reshuffle

Peter Hain is to remain as secretary of state for Northern

It follows the shake-up of the cabinet by Prime Minister
Tony Blair in the wake of Labour losses in council
elections in England.

Mr Hain said he was delighted to be asked to stay on to
finish the job and was "determined to make progress".

"We're now in the end-game. The parties face tough
decisions when the assembly meets for the first time in
three and a half years on May 15," he said.

"The MLAs will have until November to agree on a power
sharing executive.

"This is a defining period for Northern Ireland and, as I
have done for the past year, I'll be working flat out to
get the positive outcome that the people want and deserve."

In Friday's cabinet reshuffle, Charles Clarke was sacked as
home secretary.

The prime minister is trying to regain momentum after one
of the worst local election results in Labour's history.

Mr Clarke will be replaced by Defence Secretary John Reid.
Margaret Beckett is the new foreign secretary, with Jack
Straw becoming Commons leader.

John Prescott will stay as deputy prime minister but lose
his department. Trade Secretary Alan Johnson gets

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external
internet sites

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/05 14:53:32 GMT


McDonnell Urges Blair To Meet Father Of UVF Victim

Last updated: 04-05-06, 19:16

British Prime Minister Tony Blair tonight faced renewed
demands to meet the father of a loyalist murder victim.

Raymond McCord has claimed an Ulster Volunteer Force man
involved in the 1997 murder of his son, Raymond Junior, has
been protected because he is a police Special Branch agent.

But after the Prime Minister ruled out a meeting ahead of a
crucial Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman report into the
case, SDLP deputy leader Dr Alasdair McDonnell said there
was no excuse for further delay.

"I believe, particularly in light of recent revelations
about documented collusion, that Mr Blair has a duty to
take the time to meet with Raymond McCord without further
delay - the man deserves at least that," the South Belfast
MP said.

"He does not expect the Prime Minister to be able to answer
all his questions. All he wants is to at least open up a
discussion about his concerns.

Dr McDonnell said Mr McCord deserved to know the truth
about his son's death.

"Mr McCord's agony has been exacerbated by the murky
circumstances surrounding the death of his son. "It is
simply not good enough to say that the Ombudsman's report
must be produced first.

Raymond McCord Junior, a 22-year-old former RAF operator,
was beaten to death and dumped in a north Belfast quarry in

Nuala O'Loan, the Northern Ireland Police Ombudsman, is due
to report on her investigation into the allegations later
this year.

Mr McCord has already held talks with Sinn Fein President
Gerry Adams, SDLP leader Mark Durkan, Alliance leader David
Ford and Ulster Unionist leader Sir Reg Empey . He has also
met Taoiseach Bertie Ahern to discuss the case.

© 2006


Ex-Wife Pays Husband's Crime Debt

The ex-wife of a murdered LVF man has sold her home to pay
£35,000 to the Assets Recovery Agency.

Stephen Warnock, 35, was shot dead in his car in
Newtownards, in 2002, during a loyalist feud.

The agency gathered evidence that the proceeds of Warnock's
alleged unlawful conduct had indirectly enabled his wife,
Saraena, to buy a house.

The agency said the money came from alleged crime including
"drug trafficking on a significant scale".

They said Warnock had been "a major supplier of cannabis
and ecstasy".

Ms Warnock settled the case with ARA on 13 February this
year at the High Court in Belfast and agreed to pay the
Agency the sum of £35,000.

Assets worth £200,000 have already been seized from
Warnock's estate. The case is now concluded.

ARA deputy director Alan McQuillan said: "Accepting money
as a gift from those who have obtained it by criminal means
is a risky business.

"The Agency was set up to go after such money and we will
do that to the best of our ability."

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/04 11:13:25 GMT


Charities 'Launder Dirty Money'

Organised criminals in Northern Ireland with links to
paramilitaries are using charities to launder the proceeds
of crime, MPs have been warned.

The evidence was put before a meeting of the Northern
Ireland Affairs Committee in Westminster on Wednesday.

DUP MP Gregory Campbell, a committee member, said charity
regulations needed to be tightened.

The government intends to do so, with the establishment of
a Charity Commission for Northern Ireland.

Mr Campbell said committee members took time to question
officials at Wednesday's meeting about how much more
tightly controlled the system would be in the future.

"People will be concerned that anyone can establish
charitable status quite legitimately and then can use that
charitable status for very uncharitable purposes," he said.

However, he added that legitimate charities had nothing to

Members of the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee felt that
the proposed measures did not go far enough.

A Northern Ireland Office memo put before the committee,
acknowledged the existence of "certain organisations
associated publicly with current and former paramilitary
groups" which did have legitimate charitable purposes.

But it stated: "PSNI (Police Service of Northern Ireland)
investigations have highlighted cases where bank accounts
in the names of charitable organisations, associated with
current and former paramilitary groups, have been used to
encash money collected from extortion and other criminal

"In these cases, persons with strong paramilitary
connections undertook the criminal activities."

The memorandum also highlighted the existence in Northern
Ireland of "sham" charities set up as sophisticated tax
avoidance vehicles, involving sums running into millions of

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/04 07:33:33 GMT


Irish 9/11 Victim's Family Welcomes Moussaoui Life Sentence

05/05/2006 - 16:57:19

A Kerryman who lost his son in the terror attacks on
September 11th, 2001, has welcomed the life sentence handed
down to one of the conspirators who planned the atrocity.

Michael Lynch was a New York firefighter who died when the
Twin Towers collapsed after two planes crashed into the

His father Jack Lynch said he would have been unhappy if
Zaccarius Moussaoui had been given the death penalty.

He added, "I'm a pro-life person, I don't believe in humans
taking human life in any circumstance, no matter how
heinously he acts or evil he might be. That's God's job,
not ours."

"Even though we feel greatly the loss of our son Michael
was on his way to save lives, not take them."


Scottish Students Flying Into Prostitution - Gardaí

05/05/2006 - 14:18:44

Young Scottish women are travelling to Dublin to spend the
weekend working as prostitutes, Irish vice squad detectives
said today.

Amid fears over increased trafficking of Eastern European
girls to Ireland as sex slaves, a senior Garda source
warned the problem was closer to home.

Girls in their late teens and early 20s are choosing to
board low-cost flights in Glasgow on Friday evenings to
spend 48 hours earning cash for sex, according to the

Many of the women use the money to put themselves through

"It is a business for these girls. There is no question
that these girls are being trafficked. They are here for
the money," a Garda source said.

Insisting it was common among students, the source said it
was too difficult to assess how many girls were flying back
and forth each weekend.

A report by the Department of Justice and An Garda Siochana
on people trafficking warned that Ireland was at increased
risk from criminals in Eastern Europe.

Crime gangs from Bulgaria, Romania and Lithuania are
heavily involved in people smuggling for the sex trade, the
report said.

But gardaí revealed they have only uncovered a small number
of cases of Eastern European women being trafficked in
Ireland for sex.

The report said a trafficked Lithuanian woman could be sold
for up to €6,000.

It noted most girls are trafficked from Russia, Ukraine,
Bulgaria, Romania, Lithuania and Moldova.

But detectives cautioned that fewer than 10 women had been
rescued from forced prostitution over the last two or three
years in brothels in the greater Dublin area.

The Government-backed report found illegal immigration was
more of an issue than trafficking.

But it warned that Ireland faced the same risks as the rest
of the EU, in particular the United Kingdom.

Since February, up and down the UK police forces,
government bodies and travel industry representatives have
been working side by side under Operation Parameter, an
initiative designed to crackdown on people trafficking.

Garda Chief Superintendent Derek Byrne said there was
strong co-operation between An Garda Siochana, the Police
Service of Northern Ireland, UK constabularies and European

Officers are often sent abroad for training and on exchange
programmes, he said.

Two Chinese nationals, who lived in the Republic for a
time, have been charged in the north over trafficking for

The report noted that in the UK sex offences against
children, including on-line child abuse, are among the main
instances of organised crime.

And it said that it is assumed most child sex offenders act
alone, but that there are extensive, secretive, criminal
networks to exchange images or get access to victims.

Many children who wind up in the sex industry arrive in the
UK as asylum seekers, it said.

The report compared it with the situation in Ireland where
260 children who applied for asylum in the country have
disappeared over the past 10 years.

But officials said many of them went to Ireland to be re-
united with families, or for education, but there was
little suspicion the youngsters had been forced into the
sex trade.

To receive this news via email, click HERE.
No Message is necessary.
To Get RSS Feed for Irish Aires News click HERE
(Paste into a News
To May 2006 Index
To Index of Monthly Archives
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?