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September 10, 2006

Man Beaten By Loyalists After Abuse Claim

News About Ireland & The Irish

SL 09/10/06 Man Beaten By Loyalists After Schoolgirl's Abuse Claim
SL 09/10/06 Loyalist Battered Warder Was 'Trapped By Key Chain'
SL 09/10/06 Partner Of Loyalist Feud Victim Speaks Out For 1st Time
SL 09/10/06 Getting Away With Sectarian Murder
II 09/10/06 Ahern's 'Bullish' Comments An Excuse For Loyalist Violence
RT 09/10/06 McDowell To Take Over PD Leadership
RT 09/10/06 Poll: 50% Want Ahern To Remain Taoiseach


Man Beaten By Loyalists After Schoolgirl's Abuse Claim

By Ciaran McGuigan
10 September 2006

A loyalist gang battered an alleged child-molester with
iron bars after he was accused of abusing three young

The gang kicked in the door of the married man's Co Antrim
home and beat him with crowbars just 36 hours after the
schoolgirls accused him of indecently assaulting them.

They trashed the house before smashing the alleged
pervert's arms and legs - leaving him with serious head

The attack happened early last Tuesday. Detectives are now
investigating both the assault and the alleged sex-attacks.

Sunday Life understands the girls have told cops how the
man tried to ply them with booze after they were lured into
the front room of his home.

They are also believed to have told officers that the man
had a collection of condoms laid out on his coffee table
which he told one girl he was unable to use because of a
medical complaint.

Investigators from the PSNI's Child Abuse and Rape Enquiry
(CARE) unit were also told that the man indecently
assaulted the girls.

Forensic scientists are understood to be examining DNA
samples removed from one girl's clothing.

A police spokesman said last night: "A 37-year-old man has
been treated in hospital following what appears to have
been a paramilitary-style assault in Newtownabbey.

"Shortly before 12.30am on Tuesday, a number of men forced
their way into the man's house.

"The house was ransacked and the man attacked with
crowbars, suffering broken ribs and limbs and head

"Detectives, who are also investigating allegations of two
other assaults believed to have occurred in Newtownabbey on
Sunday, September 3, are investigating a possible link."


Loyalist Battered Warder Was 'Trapped By Key Chain'

By Alan Murray
10 September 2006

A prison warder beaten unconscious by a UDA inmate was
trapped by his own key chain.

Loyalist George Shaw battered two officers with a chair leg
during an assault in Maghaberry last week.

One of the warders was trapped by his key chain as Shaw
rained blows on him.

"The officer who unlocked the cell was in effect held in
position as Shaw battered him because his key was still in
the lock in the cell door and he was attached to it by the
chain from his waist, so he couldn't escape," a fellow
officer revealed.

Shaw used two pillows to make it appear he was either
sleeping or ill in his bed before slamming the heavy cell
door, trapping the warder against the wall.

Shaw (42), who describes himself as a Free Presbyterian,
was sentenced to seven years in 2002 for possessing


Partner Of Innocent Loyalist Feud Victim Speaks Out For The First Time

'I didn't want to let go of him. I knew it could be the
last time I felt him in my arms'

10 September 2006

This is the grieving Belfast woman who last night broke her
year-long silence on the killing of an innocent loyalist
feud victim.

Heartbroken Kathy Gibson (27) - whose boyfriend Craig
McCausland was shot dead by a UVF gang on July 11, 2005 -
opened her heart to Sunday Life to make a fresh appeal for
information on the brutal murder.

Craig - who police have confirmed had no links to any
paramilitary organisation - was staying at his girlfriend's
home in Dhu Varren Park, north Belfast, when he was blasted
in the neck and body by masked gunmen.

The killer pumped more than TEN bullets into the 20-year-
old in front of his shocked girlfriend and her two
children, Daniel (9) and Aslene (7).

The mum-of-two, who dived on top of her kids as the shots
rang out, told how:

:: Her kids still suffer from nightmares;

:: She was forced to move home, and how she;

:: Still suffers from depression and insomnia.

Said Kathy: "The last year or so has been a living
nightmare and I just couldn't bring myself to speak about
what happened the night Craig was murdered.

"But after lying awake one night I just decided that if I
let people know what we have been through and what Craig's
family have been through, then it might prompt someone to
come forward.

"Craig was like a father to my children and they should not
have to suffer from nightmares or wet the bed just because
an evil person took the love of my life away from us.

"These people are still walking the streets and how do we
know they won't take another innocent person's life?"

Recalling the night of the murder, Kathy added: "The night
he was murdered, Craig was laughing and joking and we were
talking about our future together.

"We had fallen asleep arm in arm and then suddenly I was
woken up by a loud thudding at my front door. I sat up and
my heart was beating so fast and I was shaking."

She said: "Three masked men entered my house that night and
one of them ran up the stairs. I then heard three or four
loud gun shots and Craig was lying on the landing.

"I went to get up, but one of them ran up the stairs again
and I threw myself on top of the kids before hearing
another five or six bangs.

"It all happened so fast. As I lay on top of the kids all I
could smell was a burning (sulphur) and all I could see was
the bright white flashes of the gun shots."

"The kids and I were screaming so loud, but the gunmen
didn't care. There were even bullet holes in the kids'
bedroom walls," she added.

"I sat next to Craig on the stairs and one of the kids
brought me a T-shirt to stem the blood that was gushing
from his neck. I held his head up so that he wouldn't choke
as the blood was pouring out of his mouth. He was trying to
breathe, but finding it hard.

"I kept kissing his head telling him he'd be fine. After
the ambulance arrived, I didn't want to let go of him
because I knew it could be the last time I felt him in my
arms. When the doctors told us he had died it was terrible.
I felt my world had ended.

"By reading my story, I just hope that people find it in
their heart to come forward."


Getting Away With Sectarian Murder

By John McGurk
10 September 2006

The bloody sectarian murder of a woman in post-war Belfast
was a grim omen of what was to explode 20 years later into
the Troubles, an Ulster author has claimed.

Respected Shakespearean academic Tom McAlindon has lifted
the lid on one of our worst miscarriages of justice - the
acquittal on a technicality of the man known as 'Robert the

In his new book, Bloodstains In Ulster, Professor McAlindon
shines a light on the murky case in which a young north
Belfast Protestant - Robert Taylor - was cleared of
murdering Mary McGowan.

In a merciless 10-minutes of terror the 54-year-old
Catholic woman was strangled, choked, stabbed, punched,
kicked, gassed and sustained multiple burns from a bubbling
cauldron of soup that was emptied over her head.

The victim was so badly mutilated by her 21-year-old
attacker at her Ponsonby Avenue home on Easter Saturday
1949 that her neighbours did not recognise her.

However, before she died, the mum-of-one was able to
identify her attacker as Taylor.

'Robert the Painter' was tried twice and condemned to death
in October 1949. But he managed to escape the hangman's
noose - due to a suspicious technicality.

Contrary to the judge's instructions, the trial jurymen and
their four RUC keepers had separated twice and spoken to
members of the public during breaks for deliberations.

Having had two trials, 'Robert the Painter' could not be
tried again. The appeal court said that he had "by some
unfortunate mischance" been denied justice, and freed him.

In the book, Tom McAlindon claims the judicial process had
been DELIBERATELY sabotaged for political expediency in
order to free a Protestant man.

Mr McAlindon told Sunday Life: "The most fascinating aspect
of the story was the way in which the appeal judges
produced an argument that got this man off the hook. It was
an astonishing piece of twisted logic.

"It was such a cold-blooded, pre-meditated murder of a
helpless, decent woman.

"He ('Robert the Painter') conducted himself with great
impertinence and impudence throughout the trial. He was
clearly and completely without remorse

"This book is about the subversion of law by sectarianism.
As I see it, it is a kind of parable, as it serves to
explain the sense of profound injustice, the sense of
alienation from the judiciary and the police, which was to
finally explode in 1969."

Praise for the retired University of Hull English professor
has come from rarefied quarters, including award-winning
writer Bernard McLaverty.

But possibly the most cherished comment has come from Mary
McGowan's daughter, Kathleen Woodhouse.

Said Tom: "She liked the book very much. She said that she
loved it and couldn't put it down. I was delighted.

"I met her and I was astonished by her serenity and
generosity of spirit. She is a very remarkable person, very
much like her mother, a very nice lady."


Bloodstains On Ulster - The Notorious Case of Robert the
Painter is published by The Liffey Press and is priced at


Ahern's 'Bullish' Comments An Excuse For Loyalist Violence

Alan Murray

FOREIGN Minister Dermot Ahern's warning to Unionists that
greater cross-border cooperation will be imposed if they
don't agree to power sharing arrangements in November have
been described as disastrous by the DUP.

Gregory Campbell, the East Londonderry MP who attended the
British Irish Association Conference where Mr Ahern was
speaking on Friday night, warned that the Minister's
remarks would be viewed in some Loyalist quarters as an
excuse to return to violence.

In his address to the Association, the Minister warned that
if the DUP didn't successfully conclude negotiations with
Sinn Fein to create a new power-sharing administration at
Stormont by November 24 the British and Irish Governments
would press ahead to increase the scope and influence of
cross-border institutions.

But Gregory Campbell warned that Mr Ahern's bullish remarks
could have disastrous consequences and could reverse the
current mood within loyalist paramilitary ranks to disband
and perhaps decommission weapons.

"I have no doubt whatsoever that there are those in the
Unionist community in loyalist paramilitary ranks who will
see the Minister's speech as an excuse to go back to the
things 'that they do best', to borrow a phrase a Sinn Fein
politician used about the IRA a few years ago," he said.

"Dermot Ahern, in his speech and the bullish way he
delivered it, clearly demonstrated that he either doesn't
understand the Unionist psyche, or doesn't want to
understand it. To make those remarks in advance of possible
talks with the two premiers was folly. It was an appalling
piece of republican rhetoric by the Irish Government," the
MP said.

Loyalist paramilitaries, particularly the Ulster Volunteer
Force, have in recent weeks identified a successful outcome
to negotiations between the political parties at Stormont
as the key condition for disbandment and possible weapons


McDowell To Take Over PD Leadership

10 September 2006 19:25

The Minister for Justice, Michael McDowell, is to take over
as leader of the Progressive Democrats.

Minister of State Tom Parlon decided not to contest the
leadership and will nominate Mr McDowell for the position.

Mr Parlon will become president of the party while the PD
Chief Whip Liz O'Donnell will be appointed Deputy Leader.

According to a statement from the party, Mr McDowell would
like Mary Harney continue in her role as Minister for
Health and Children.

In a statement, Mr Parlon said he was glad the leadership
issue within the Progressive Democrats had been resolved.

He said in terms in terms of criteria for a top political
leader, Mr McDowell would get an A1 in most categories. Mr
Parlon said it was his belief that he would make a
tremendous leader.

The Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, has said he is looking forward
to working closely with Michael McDowell as he did with
Mary Harney.

He also complimented the PDs on the speedy manner in which
they dealt with the leadership issue.


Poll: 50% Want Ahern To Remain Taoiseach

10 September 2006 14:36

An opinion poll in today's Sunday Tribune newspaper has
found that exactly half of the electorate want Bertie Ahern
to continue as Taoiseach, compared to 29% who back Enda

However, the poll also shows that more people are
dissatisfied with the way the Government is running the
country than are satisfied.

Since the last Millward Brown IMS poll for the Sunday
Tribune in November, there has been striking stability in
support for the various parties.

Fianna Fáil is still unchanged at 37% and Fine Gael is up
two to 26%.

Labour at 12%, the PDs at 4% and the Greens on 5% are all
unchanged; while Sinn Féin on 8% and others on 9% are both
down one point.

The poll found that 52% of voters were dissatisfied with
the Government's performance, compared to 43% who were

When asked who they wanted as Taoiseach, exactly 50% of the
electorate opted for Bertie Ahern, while 29% chose the Fine
Gael leader. 14% wanted neither and 7% did not know.

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