Daily Ireland

Mistaken identity leads to raid trauma

A DERRY mother of two has hit out at the PSNI after police raided her home in a case of mistaken identity.
Several homes in the city were searched in connection with the Garda arrests in Dublin and Cork.
Elaine Anderson opened the door of her Glendale Park home at 10.40pm on Thursday evening to be met by PSNI detectives probing “serious crime” and money laundering. She claimed the officer in charge had asked her, “Were you not expecting us?”
Two men from Derry, arrested at Heuston railway station in Dublin, were yesterday released from custody without charge pending a report being sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Computers and dozens of documents were seized in a series of co-ordinated raids and searches on homes north and south of the Border.
The stunned Derry woman said she had been presented with a search warrant containing a name unknown to her. She was forced to wake her sleeping children — six-year-old Yasmin and four-year-old Zara — and take them to a neighbour’s house while eight police officers searched every room in her home. A convoy of six police vehicles was in the street outside.
The PSNI search team withdrew after 40 minutes. A spokesman later declined to reveal specific details of any of the raids that targeted four homes in the Waterside and Cityside areas of the city.
Miss Anderson said last night that she had been traumatised by the search. She said she was considering referring the search to the Police Ombudsman.
“They said they had a warrant to search my home but the name on the warrant was wrong. They asked me if I had large sums of money in my home and I replied, ‘I wish I had.’ I had to lift the children out of bed and take them to a neighbour’s house. When they were finished, they told me that I would be relieved to know that they had found nothing. They really didn’t give a damn.”
Sinn Féin assembly member Raymond McCartney last night accused the PSNI of raiding innocent people’s homes with no justification.
“I went and visited these people and it was obvious that they were distraught and had no sense of why their home was being raided. They showed me the warrant and it was obvious that the name on it was wrong.
“They feel like victims of false information and will lodge a formal complaint. It just shows that the PSNI are prepared to raid people’s homes on the flimsiest of evidence. These people feel that, in the wake of this raid, they will be wrongly linked to money laundering.”

Daily Ireland

Special Branch under fire

The family of Eoin Marley, the Irish People’s Liberation Organisation member killed by the IRA in 1990, has welcomed the Police Ombudsman’s report into his killing.
The report from Nuala O’Loan was published yesterday.
It blamed Special Branch for withholding information relevant to his murder.
Eoin Morley was shot dead by the IRA at his home in Newry, Co Down, in February 1990 as part of a dispute between the IPLO and the Irish Republican Army.
Ivan Morley said the family also believed that Special Branch gave the go-ahead for his brother’s murder in order to protected a high-ranking informer inside the IRA.
“We know that the quartermaster in the Newry area at that time was a man who has subsequently publicly admitted being an informer,” he said.
The weapon used to kill Eoin Morley would only have been moved with this man’s knowledge. It is therefore inevitable that Special Branch knew about the murder in advance but chose to let it go ahead, according to Ivan Morley.
“We are pleased that Nuala O’Loan’s report has shown up the Special Branch. We never expected to find a paper trail linking the Special Branch directly to killing our brother but this report is supportive of our position.”
The Morley family has also accused Special Branch of trying to create a feud between the IRA and IPLO through the killing of their brother.
Among other things, the Police Ombudsman’s report said that Special Branch withheld information from detectives investigating the murder.
Even though the RUC built up high-grade intelligence on those suspected of plotting Eoin Morley’s shooting, Mrs O’Loan discovered that nobody was ever arrested.
Her assessment has added weight to the Morley family’s allegation.
Police were also unable to tell Mrs O’Loan who took charge of the inquiry.
However, after examining files on the 1990 killing, Mrs O’Loan said she found no evidence to back claims it had been planned by the RUC.
After the killing, the IRA claimed that Eoin Morley had been working as an informer.
The IRA later withdrew this allegation and apologised to the family for it.
Mrs O’Loan’s examination of Special Branch files uncovered ten separate items of information that may have been vital to the murder investigation yet were never passed on to detectives.
The anti-terrorist unit’s failures were unacceptable, the report found.
Mrs O’Loan said, “In the absence of any indication as to who held the information and why, it has not been possible to draw any conclusions, other than to say this was but one of many occasions on which intelligence held in headquarters, which was relevant to the investigation of the most serious of crimes, was not transmitted to those police officers carrying out investigations.”
The ombudsman’s assessment echoed an earlier dossier she compiled on the hunt for the Omagh bombers.
On that occasion, her team established that critical warnings of an imminent terrorist strike were never relayed to officers in the Co Tyrone market town, where the Real IRA killed 29 people in 1998.
The latest probe was launched after relatives of Eoin Morley alleged that police instigated the killing in an attempt to ignite a republican feud and later refused to arrest the chief suspect.
The 23-year-old victim was gunned down at his girlfriend’s home in Newry, Co Down, on Easter Sunday, 1990 amid tensions between the IRA and the IPLO, a republican splinter group.
As well as backing the family’s view that the police did not conduct a thorough and proper investigation, Mrs O’Loan’s team established a number of other significant failings.
The ombudsman’s investigators interviewed two RUC officers.
Both denied having led the murder inquiry.
With only one detective still believed to be working in the PSNI, the force could not conclusively state who had responsibility.
Although there was no evidence to suggest that a crime had been committed, the confusion has stopped any disciplinary action being taken.
Forensic experts later disclosed to police that a gun found in unrelated house searches was the murder weapon, yet the development was never pursued, the report found.
A fingerprint, masks, overalls and gloves were also seized.
Despite having information linking a named man to the house where the material was found, the murder file did not list him as a suspect or check him against the fingerprint recovered.
When this man was arrested two months later over a separate incident, a hair sample was taken but it was never compared to the clothing found earlier, according to Mrs O’Loan.
She partially substantiated allegations that detectives had failed to arrest a known suspect referred to as Man A.
“High-grade intelligence was held by the RUC in relation to a number of individuals who were named as being responsible for the murder.
“The individuals were not arrested,” the ombudsman said.
“The practice of the RUC Special Branch not to disseminate information and the consequences of this inevitably led to suspicion that individuals were being protected.
“The PSNI has recently reorganised its crime department to professionalise serious crime investigation.
“There is now a much greater emphasis on the training of detectives.
“I believe these developments should give the public a greater confidence in the present ability of the police to tackle murder and serious crime.”
A PSNI statement said, “As the Police Ombudsman points out and we would reiterate, wide-ranging reforms have taken place.
“A new Crime Operations Department has been established, bringing Special Branch and Crime under the command of a single assistant chief constable, ensuring better sharing of information between both branches.
“The oversight commissioner has said that these new protocols, which have been implemented, meet the ‘best practice’ requirements of any police service in the world.”


Gardaí raid retirement home in Mullingar

19/02/2005 - 18:57:22

It is being reported that officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau have raided a retirement home near Tullamore, Co Offaly, this morning.

The premises are believed to be partly owned by Ted Cunningham, from whose house £2.3m (€3.3m) was seized last Thursday.

Cunningham was released by the Gardaí this afternoon but a file is expected to be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The 57-year-old businessman is thought to be a director of at least nine companies, all of which will be investigated by the Gardaí as part of this ongoing operation.

Daily Ireland

Tribute to rock legend

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“Going to my home town” was one of Rory Gallagher’s most celebrated hits and the people of his home town – Ballyshannon, Co Donegal – are set to honour him a decade after his death by naming the local theatre after him.
The legendary blues guitarist was born in Ballyshannon in 1948 and lived there until he was six-years-old, before moving to Cork city where he was raised.
Rory's father, the late Daniel Gallagher, worked in Ballyshannon on the construction of the ESBs Cathleen Fall's power station before the move to Cork.
Gallagher is viewed by many as the man who spearheaded the Irish rock movement. The proposal for the name-change of the theatre, in the Abbey Arts Centre, was initially mooted by the Rory Gallagher Tribute Festival Committee a number of months ago.
It has now been given the green light by the local town council after Fine Gael councillor Brendan Travers tabled a motion concerning the name-change at a town council meeting.
“Ballyshannon Town Council own the local theatre but it has a committee known as the Abbey Centre Trust who are currently being consulted ahead of the next town council meeting," said Barry O'Neill, founder of the Rory Gallagher festival.
The Rory Gallagher International Tribute festival was established as a “birthday tribute", coinciding with Rory's birthday on March 2, 2002, but as there was huge interest in that event it was decided to establish an annual weekend event.
Now in its fourth year, the festival is becoming an increasingly popular event on the Irish music calendar with visitors attending from Holland, Germany, England, the USA, Norway and many other countries. Last year over 4,000 fans attended the four-day event and it is expected to grow this year.
“All visitors come bearing anecdotes about Rory and memories of his many tours across the world," said Mr O'Neill.
“The festival is an unbelievable experience and is one big celebration of Rory's life, with open-air concerts, films, guitar workshops and pub and theatre gigs. Each year we strive to link all the participants to Rory.
“For instance, this year Ronnie Drew is performing. Ronnie and Rory were great friends and Ronnie carried Rory's Coffin at his funeral in Bishopstown, Cork City in June 1995."
Rory Gallagher was based in London for most of his 30-year career and he toured extensively, selling 30 million records to a massive worldwide following.
He died in London at the early age of 47 in June 1995, from complications following a liver transplant. Although he had suffered health problems for some time, he toured until falling seriously-ill in late 1994.
He was renowned as a master on the guitar, playing rock and roll, blues and jazz music.
This is not the first time he will be commemorated by the people of his hometown.
“After forming our committee to honour Rory, we erected a monument at Rory Gallagher Place in Ballyshannon in his honour," said Mr O'Neill.
“The people of Ballyshannon are highly proud of Rory Gallagher and what he achieved.
“Rory has left a great legacy to younger musicians who today can identify with the legend of rock and blues."



The country club is owned by the RUC Athletic Association

Money discovered in a police sports club was stolen in the £26.5m Northern Bank robbery, detectives have confirmed.

Police discovered £50,000 in new Northern Bank notes at the Newforge Country Club in Belfast.

Five shrink-wrapped packages each containing £10,000 were found in the toilets of the facility.

The police, in excusing it, said it was designed to distract attention away from the inquiry and from events elsewhere.

It is the first cash from the robbery to turn up.

A police spokeswoman said the notes had consecutive serial numbers and corresponded with the numbers given to the PSNI by the bank.

A man rang the Police Ombudsman on Friday claiming to be a PSNI officer and told them where to find the money.

The RUC Athletics Association has blamed 'outsiders' for leaving the cash. New Forge Country Club is owned by the RUC Athletic Association.

The complex is used by former RUC officers and serving Police Service of Northern Ireland officers.


**Foxhunt fuckwits

Four arrests under hunt law

Press Association
Saturday February 19, 2005

Four men were arrested today under the new hunting legislation, police have said.

The men were found at 4am between Hullavington and Sherston, Wiltshire, with four dogs and the carcass of a hare, police spokesman Dave Taylor said.

The men, aged 31, 32 and 33 from south Wales and a 53-year-old from Ireland were arrested on suspicion of hunting with dogs under Section 1 of the new Hunting Act, which came into force yesterday.

Mr Taylor said they are also being investigated as to possible firearms offences relating to a modified air rifle and possible offensive weapons charges relating to the possession of a pointed/bladed article.

The men have now been released on police bail pending further enquiries.

Mr Taylor said: "They may become the first men prosecuted under the new law." He added: "We would stress that they were nothing to do with any of the organised hunts."

Thousands of defiant hunt supporters gathered across England and Wales today as foxhound packs rode out for the first time since new legislation on hunting came into force.

Over 250 hunts set off across the country "to drag hunt within the law" following the ban on the hunting and killing of foxes with hounds.

Anti-hunt groups claimed they already had evidence of "suspicious behaviour" and urged their supporters to stay vigilant.

Actor Jeremy Irons and Labour MP Kate Hoey were among the many followers condemning the ban as "prejudiced and bigoted" and determined to see it overturned.

Others claimed the new law was unenforceable and impossible to monitor.

Chief executive of the Countryside Alliance Simon Hart said it was "simply the first day in the dismantling of the Hunting Act".

In a legal drag hunt foxes are flushed out of a wood and shot dead before their scent is left as a trail for the hounds.

The South Shropshire Hunt, whose joint master is Otis ferry, son of rock star Bryan Ferry, claimed its first legal fox hunting kill within an hour of riding out near Shrewsbury today. Clare Rowson, the West Midlands spokeswoman for the Countryside Alliance, said: "The fox was shot, taken out of the earth and then given to the hounds."

Mike Hobday, from the League Against Cruel Sports, which has 100 monitors out at hunts, said "extremely suspicious activities are taking place".

He added: "We have a number of clear signs of suspicious behaviour and we are gathering the evidence together in order to be able to get an assessment across the country.

"We have captured evidence on film and also have evidence from members of the public but that is all we can say at present."

Earlier, the league's chief executive Douglas Batchelor condemned the hunt's decision to go out with hounds as "reckless".

"They will need to exercise extreme caution if they are to avoid committing a criminal offence," he said.

The Countryside Alliance said hunts would be difficult to monitor.

A spokesman said: "The Hunting Act gives no right of access to the police, let alone animal rights activists, to enter private property for the purpose of investigating hunting activities."

Over 270 hunts will meet in England and Wales today - on the last six Saturdays a maximum of 12 hunts across the country have been followed by animal rights activists.

"Over 75% of hunts have never been followed by animal rights activists."

Describing the ban on hunting with hounds, which came into force yesterday, as an "embarrassment" to prime minister Tony Blair, Mr Hart said he was sorely tempted to say "sod it" and defy it completely.

Despite this temptation, Mr Hart who was attending the Duke of Beaufort's Hunt, Didmarton, Gloucestershire, insisted he would be urging all hunts to stay within the law and carry out drag chases.

But he also pointed out that "dogs will be dogs." Under guidelines from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, an accidental fox kill is acceptable, as long as there is no proof of intent, he added.

Mr Hart said: "There has been hunting in England for 700 years. This (the ban) may take two or three years, perhaps two or three months, to unpick. It will be nothing more than a temporary break in normal service, as broadcasters say."

Oscar winner Irons, who was attending the Bicester Hunt in Oxfordshire, said the ban was "the thin end of the wedge".

"England is made up of minorities whether Asian or huntsmen," he said. "I believe as a nation we should be allowed to live in liberty."

He added: "The important thing is we intend to challenge the law. So it's important to keep the hunt together and keep the infrastructure of hounds, kennel keepers and horses together."

Labour MP Kate Hoey gave a defiant speech against her party's ban on fox hunting today before she rode out with the Duke of Beaufort's Hunt.

She branded members of her own party who supported the ban on hunting with hounds "prejudiced and bigoted."

She told a crowd of more than 3,000 supporters, gathered at Worcester Lodge: "We will prevail and this law will have to be overturned."

Police officers were also out in force to look out for evidence of breaches of the ban and act to prevent violence between hunt supporters and opponents.

Daily Ireland

Caught in the crossfire

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The well-known businessman and political advisor Phil Flynn has resigned several prestigious private and public postings after being caught up in the money-laundering investigation being undertaken by the Garda.
Speaking to Daily Ireland last night, the former trade union leader and government-appointed troubleshooter, said he had stepped down as Chairman of the Bank of Scotland (Ireland) and resigned his position as the chair of the Irish Government committee overseeing the decentralisation of civil service departments.
The move comes after it emerged that a finance firm part-owned by Mr Flynn is under investigation by gardaí probing an alleged money-laundering operation.
Yesterday a dissident republican was charged with offences arising from the investigation. Phil Flynn said he had been “caught in the crossfire" of the Garda investigation.
Mr Flynn confirmed yesterday that he recently travelled to Bulgaria on a business trip with a man arrested by gardaí in Farran, County Cork, on Thursday.
Over £2.4m (€3.5m) has been recovered by Garda since the operation began on Wednesday night.
The 61-year-old is a close political adviser to Taoiseach Bertie Ahern and currently heads up a powerful committee overseeing the roll-out of the national decentralisation programme. Mr Flynn has been a strong supporter of the Daily Ireland project since its inception though he does not serve as a director. He was also a Vice-President of Sinn Féin in the 1980s.

Daily Ireland

Northern Bank heist notes found at PSNI Sports club

Notes linked to the Northern Bank robbery finally turned up last night — at a ‘country club’ in Belfast which has been used by PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde.
The discovery of the notes at the Newforge Country Club which is home to the PSNI RUC Athletic Club is being dismissed by the PSNI as a ‘sting’ by the group behind the robbery.
PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde and other senior officers often use restaurant facilities at the club to brief journalists.
The PSNI last night said the find was being taken seriously but insisted the Country Club was not part of the PSNI estates.
However, the club’s website boasts the badges of the PSNI and RUC and its gift shop “offers the ideal RUC or PSNI gift”.
Formerly used only by RUC officers, the country club in recent years has opened its facilities to the general public.
However, many of its patrons are current or retired officers of the RUC and PSNI.

RTE News

Sinn Féin leadership meets in Dublin

19 February 2005 16:39

Sinn Féin leaders have met in Dublin to discuss the political fallout from the series of raids and arrests by gardaí investigating alleged money laundering by subversives.

The party's President, Gerry Adams cut short a visit to Spain to attend the meeting.

Speaking as he entered the meeting, Mr Adams said he still believed the IRA statement that it was not responsible for the Northern Bank raid.

He insisted that Sinn Féin was not involved in criminality and that he would not have anyone near him who was involved in criminality.

He criticised both what he described as a feeding frenzy by the media and what he said were attempts by Sinn Féin's political opponents to use the events to smear the party.

Mr Adams also said that the Minister for Justice, Michael McDowell, was wrong to say that Sinn Féin was a 'colossal crime machine'.

Yesterday Blogger was playin up, so some posts did not make it over here. You might want to check the alternative sites for any missing posts:



or just type fenian32.tk as your URL



Orangemen face prosecution over parade
19/02/2005 - 14:50:35

Belfast Orangemen face prosecution after taking part in a parade today which had not been sanctioned by the Parades Commission.

Members of a single Orange lodge marched from Belfast into the city centre to commemorate two Ulster Defence Regiment soldiers who were murdered in the city in the 1980s.

The parade passed off peacefully with a protest mounted by less than a dozen nationalists as it passed the end of the Short Strand on its way into the city centre.

The parade had not been sanctioned because of a row over the application form which the Parades Commission said had been “incomplete and therefore unacceptable”.

Despite the failure to get clearance to march, the members of the Orange Lodge - Ulster Defenders of the Realm LOL 710 – said they were going ahead with their annual commemoration.

The Police Service said in the absence of a ruling from the Parades Commission giving the go-ahead those taking part were acting illegally and were given two warnings.

“Evidence was gathered and the matter will be forwarded to the DPP,” said a police spokesman.

The parade commemorates two UDR soldiers who were killed in Belfast’s Royal Avenue in a bomb blast in February 1988 during the construction of the Castlecourt shopping centre.


SF organising Belfast rallies to oppose 'criminalisation' of the party

19/02/2005 - 15:09:45

Sinn Féin is organising a series of rallies across the North to oppose what the party has described as attempts to criminalise it.

This afternoon, thousands of letters from the party president Gerry Adams were circulated in nationalist areas of Belfast and elsewhere inviting people to the rallies.

The letter said that the party’s opponents wanted to roll back republican advances.

The Belfast rally on Monday night will be held at a city centre hotel and will be addressed by Martin McGuinness.



Money may be 'linked' to £26.5m robbery

A sum of money found in Belfast may be linked to the Northern Bank robbery, police have said.

The cash was found at the Newforge Country Club and police say it may be an effort to distract investigations into the £26.5m Belfast robbery.

Four people are being questioned after £2m, £60,000 of it in Northern Bank notes, was seized in the Irish Republic. Four were released earlier.

Both cash seizures are being tested to see if they are linked to the raid.

On Friday night, two men arrested earlier this week in Cork in connection with alleged money laundering were released without charge.

Two men from Derry, arrested in Dublin on Wednesday, were also released without charge, pending a report to the DPP.

A man was arrested on Friday night after police received reports of cash being burnt in a garden near Cork city.

Martin McGuinness said the arrests were not an embarrassment

Earlier, 17 bags of sterling bank notes were removed from a house near Cork.

Garda Commissioner Noel Conroy told a news conference an additional £175,000 had been surrendered to police in Dublin on Thursday night.

He said police were still in the early stages of their investigation.

"We see a subversive element in the movement of this money," he said.

"We are following quite a number of lines as to where the money may have come from, and naturally enough, one of those relates to the Northern Bank robbery."

Sinn Fein MP Martin McGuinness denied that the ongoing arrests, charges and criminal investigation were a massive embarrassment to his party.

"Well I haven't really heard anything thus far that would change my assessment, but that does not mean that we won't reflect on events as they unfold in Dublin and Cork over the course of the coming days," he said.

"I want to hear the full facts, not the fiction, of what we are dealing with at the moment."


In a separate development, a former Sinn Fein vice president, Phil Flynn, resigned from an Irish government committee over his links with a company at the centre of the investigation.

He has also stepped down as chairman of the Bank of Scotland's Irish division.

Mr Flynn said he had done nothing wrong and had no involvement in laundering money for anyone.

Meanwhile, a man arrested in connection with alleged money laundering has been charged with membership of the Real IRA.

Don Bullman, 30, of Wilton, Cork, was one of three men arrested after 94,000 euros were found in a car in Dublin.

A police officer told the Special Criminal Court in Dublin on Friday he believed the notes were part of an IRA money laundering operation.

The cash was in a box of washing powder in a Northern Ireland registered car.

The father-of-three was remanded in custody.


The Money Lender

By Eoin English, Seán O’Riordan and Dan Buckley

THIS is the man gardaí are questioning in connection with money laundering for the IRA after £2.3m was found in his house in Farran, Co Cork.

Ted Cunningham, 57, is a director of at least 10 companies, including one called Wolfe Tone Holdings Ltd.

Originally from Macroom, Co Cork, Mr Cunningham is a registered moneylender. He set up a private lending agency in 1995.

He has company offices in Ballincollig, Co Cork, registered with the Companies Registration Office as Financial and Legal Clients Ltd.

These offices were raided at 9am yesterday and documents seized.

Ted Cunningham’s bungalow in Farran was later searched and £2.3m was recovered hidden in a green compost bin at the back of the house. Mr Cunningham shares the house with his partner Cathy Armstrong and his son, Tim.

Both Ted Cunningham and Ms Armstrong were arrested yesterday and detained for questioning in relation to money laundering under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act. They can be held for up to 72 hours. They were being questioned last night at the Bridewell Garda Station in Cork City.

Tim Cunningham was not arrested and there is no suggestion of any impropriety on his part. Ted Cunningham was placed under surveillance by Special Branch detectives after he was witnessed attending a meeting with a pair of Bulgarian arms dealers who travelled to Ireland six months ago.

It is believed he had secured contracts to launder as much as €10m in republican money over a period of time, not just from IRA sources but also possibly the INLA.

Mr Cunningham is listed in the Companies Office as being a director of nine companies:

* Chesterton Mortgage Co Ltd.

* Insurance Concepts Ltd.

* Tullybeg Retirement Village Ltd.

* Beechlawn Golf Course and Driving Range Ltd.

* Highbury Holdings Ltd.

* Firmount Developments Ltd.

* Midlands Projects Ltd.

* Wolfe Tone Holdings Ltd.

* Cave Hill Holdings.

There is no suggestion of illegality on the part of any of these companies.

Irish Examiner> Breaking News

Ahern adviser resigns after gardaí raid home and office

18/02/2005 - 10:09:56 PM

A Government adviser tonight resigned from a number of key positions after he was embroiled in a multi-million Euro money-laundering investigation.

Industrial relations trouble-shooter Phil Flynn stood down as chairman of the national implementation body overseeing decentralisation as well as from the board of health insurer VHI and as chairman of the Bank of Scotland in Ireland.

Mr Flynn’s home and office was raided by detectives after it emerged that he was a non-executive director with Chesterton Finance, which is being investigated by gardaí.

He said tonight: “I don’t believe that the money has been laundered through Chesterton.”

"I have no involvement with money laundering, full stop - for the Republican movement or for anybody else.

“The sensible thing is to step aside. This will sort itself out and when it does you’ll see me back.”

Taoiseach Bertie Ahern had earlier said through his spokeswoman that Mr Flynn’s position on the decentralisation implementation body was being considered by him,

Chesterton Finance LTD, is owned by Cork business man Ted Cunningham who is currently helping Guardai with their inquiries into the money laundering operation.

Hundreds of gardaí seized over £2.3m (€3.3m) in dozens of nationwide searches which police chiefs have so far refused to link with December’s £26.5m (€38m) sterling Northern Bank heist in Belfast.

Gardaí said tonight that they released one of the men they were questioning under the Offences Against the State Act in Co Cork. Officers also warned that the investigation is extremely complex, and will continue for some time but no further details will be released for operational reasons.

Garda spokesman Supt. Kevin Donohoe said: “It should be clearly understood that this is an extremely complex investigation with many facets which require further extensive enquiries.

“While Gardaí are satisfied with the extensive progress made within the last three days, it can be expected that this investigation will continue for some time.

“This remains a very fluid situation and both the money laundering aspect and subversive involvement will be vigorously pursued.

“To this end, the investigation teams have been in consultation with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and members of the PSNI in Northern Ireland.

“Where breaches of the law are suspected, complete investigation files will be submitted to the DPP for consideration.

“In light of this, Gardaí will not be disclosing any further detailed aspects of this investigation.”

Mr Flynn said earlier today that Mr Cunningham had approached him to join the board of Chesterton Finance LTD and offered him a 10 percent stake to revamp the firm.

The 62-year-old former trade unionist also revealed that officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau quizzed him yesterday and seized files he had relating to the company.

There is no suggestion that Mr Flynn was involved in any wrong-doing. (O RITE!)


The Sinn Féin activists, the money lender and the £26m bank heist

By Fionnan Sheahan, Political Correspondent

SINN FÉIN is facing the biggest crisis in its history after two party activists were arrested in a garda swoop on suspects believed to be laundering some of the cash stolen in the Northern Bank raid.

Seven people were arrested and over £2.3m and €94,000 was seized in Cork and Dublin.

Up to 100 officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau, Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation, Special Detective Unit and Crime and Security Section were involved in the arrests.

A former Sinn Féin councillor, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was one of those arrested.

Another Sinn Féin activist, George Hegarty from Douglas, Cork, was arrested after gardaí seized £60,000 in a raid on his home at 4 Donnybrook Cottages. Mr Hegarty is in his 50s.

A registered money lender, Ted Cunningham, 57, from Farran, Cork, and his partner, Cathy Armstrong, were also arrested and detained after £2.3m was recovered in a compost bin at the rear of their bungalow in Farran, Cork. The arrests took place at 11am yesterday morning after a 9am raid on Mr Cunningham's business premises in Ballincollig.

Opposition parties last night said the developments had serious consequences.

Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny said the arrests raised grave questions for the party: "In view of Sinn Féin's repeated denials of Sinn Féin or IRA involvement in any criminal activity, the leadership of Sinn Féin must make an immediate statement on this development and on its relationship with those involved."

Labour Party leader Pat Rabbitte said the garda seizure of large amounts of money was an "astonishing development".

"Whilst we await more details to emerge, it is of extreme concern that the garda operation was specifically directed at IRA money laundering."

Describing the developments as "sensational", Defence Minister Willie O'Dea said the arrests and seizures were part of a longstanding garda investigation. The minister held back, though, from commenting on the potential political fallout at this stage.

DUP Assembly Member Ian Paisley Jnr claimed Sinn Féin and the IRA had been caught "red-handed" in a massive money laundering operation.

A Sinn Féin spokesman said he was aware of reports arrests and speculation that the police action was linked to the bank robbery.

"Sinn Féin's position on this robbery is clear," he said. "Over the last four weeks we have seen people rush to judgment time and time again. We would urge people to exercise caution on this occasion and allow the truth to come out."

The first of the arrests were made shortly after 4.30pm on Wednesday. Three men - two from Derry and one from Cork - were detained at Heuston station in Dublin. The Corkman was found carrying €94,000 in cash. The two men from Derry are believed to have strong republican links.

The man arrested in Passage West was last night being held at Togher garda station in Cork city under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, while Mr Hegarty was detained at Mayfield Garda Station. Mr Cunningham and Ms Armstrong were being questioned at the Bridewell Garda Station in Cork. The three arrested in Dublin were being questioned at separate city stations.

All seven can be held for up to 72 hours.

There were also unconfirmed reports of garda raids in Dundalk. There were no arrests, but a number of documents were seized.

A spokeswoman for the Police Service of Northern Ireland insisted it was too early to link the seizure with the Northern Bank raid before Christmas.

"It is too early to say at this stage if any of the money found was connected to the Northern Bank robbery but both forces are in contact," she said

Clean sweep: seven arrests and £2.3m seized


4.30pm: Three men, two from Derry and one from Cork, arrested at Heuston station. The Corkman was found carrying €94,000 in cash. The two men from Derry have strong republican links.

9pm: Two men arrested in Cork - one in Passage West and the other in Douglas. George Hegarty, who is in his early 50s, was arrested at his home at Donnybrook Cottages, Douglas where £60,000 in Northern Bank notes was discovered. It's believed Mr Hegarty has links to Sinn Féin.

The man arrested in Passage West was last night being held at Togher Garda Station in Cork city. Mr Hegarty was detained at Mayfield Garda Station.


9am: A financial premises in Ballincollig, Co Cork, is raided by detectives who remove a number of files.

11am: Financier Ted Cunningham and his partner, Cathy Armstrong, were arrested at a house at Church View, Farran, nine miles west of Cork city. Gardaí discovered over £2.3 million (€3.2m) in cash.

Gardaí also secure a number of other premises across the city.

5pm: Local reports of garda raids in a number of premises in Dundalk. There were no arrests, but a number of documents were seized. However, the garda press office refused to comment.


Fury at UUP leaflet

by Joe Nawaz

A controversial new campaign leaflet distributed by the Ulster Unionist Party implies that Catholics are less industrious than Protestants, denies that nationalists are the victims of employment discrimination and claims that the PSNI will become ‘unfair’ with a 50/50 religious quota.

The leaflet, entitled ‘It’s Not Fair’, features a list of areas in which the UUP claim that unionists are losing out to nationalists.

Representatives across the political spectrum united this week to condemn the leaflet, which many see as an opportunistic attempt to win ground from the DUP.

Water charges, the leaflet states, will affect unionists more because "rates and water charges will be based on the capital value of your home, penalising those who have worked and saved to own their home."

Jim Barbour, spokesperson for the ‘We Won’t Pay’ anti-water charges campaign refuted the leaflet’s allegations and described its authors as "reprehensible".

"This is utterly abusive. Never mind religion – people, rich and poor, across the board will be affected by the water charges.

"I am disgusted that the UUP would stoop to these levels."


A controversial new campaign leaflet, distributed by the Ulster Unionist Party, has upset a leading anti-water charges campaigner who says he’s “disgusted” that the party would “stoop to these levels” while South politicians have angrily lashed the flier as “offensive” and “hateful”

Jim Barbour, spokesperson for the ‘We Won’t Pay’ anti-water charges campaign has refuted claims contained in a new Ulster Unionist Party election leaflet and described its authors as "reprehensible".

The leaflet’s most contentious claim is that unionists will be particularly badly affected by water charges because they have “worked and saved to own their home.”

"This is utterly abusive. Never mind religion – people, rich and poor, across the board will be affected by the water charges,” said Jim Barbour.
"I am disgusted that the UUP would stoop to these levels."

On alleged discrimination against state schools, the leaflet claims, "proposed school budgets will reduce yearly funding in the state sector by three pounds per pupil and increase funding in the maintained (Roman Catholic) sector by five pounds per pupil."

The controversial pamphlet goes on to claim that employment discrimination against Nationalists in the North is a "lie".

"The government accepts the republican lie alleging discrimination against nationalists.

"It’s time for the Equality Commission to publicly state that there is no discrimination against Catholics."
South Belfast MLA Alex Maskey dismissed the leaflet as “offensive” and said he was amazed at its use of language.

"For a start, their assertions are incorrect, sectarian and very dangerous and divisive.

"In areas like education, there has been a lot of cross-party co-operation to fight budget cuts and to get a better deal for all our children,” he said.

The South Belfast councillor added: "For them now to come out with this is disgraceful. Catholics pay rates and work hard as well and for them to say that we are getting a better deal is simply ridiculous.

"This leaflet is deeply offensive to an entire community."

Cllr Maskey went on: "How does this hateful language square with their new-found, bleeding-heart despair for their own community?

"I despair at the maturity at these people – the bottom line is that this is offensive and sectarian and will do a lot of damage."

A UUP insider said that he believed that the party was wrongly attempting to "outdo the DUP".

"I got this through my letter box a few days ago,” he said.

"I couldn’t believe it. Even if you ignore the sectarian aspect of the comments, for us to attack the British government after we called for direct rule is hypocritical at best.

"This is not going to win any voters back from the DUP and it certainly won’t appeal to our own voters."

Prospective Alliance councillor for Laganbank, Allan Leonard, said that he found the wording of the leaflet remarkable.

"I can’t understand the mentality at work here. The UUP have produced a hateful and ludicrous document. To imply that Protestants have less rights than Catholics is just crazy and harmful.

"Is this the kind of stuff that the UUP will be producing from now on?"
Speaking from the UUP headquarters yesterday, an Ulster unionist spokesperson denied accusations that the leaflet was sectarian.

"The intention of the leaflet is certainly not to be divisive. It is flagging up legitimate concerns that ordinary unionist people hold.

"If people choose to see it as sectarian, then that is their choice," he said.

Journalist:: Joe Nawaz

Daily Ireland

Leitrim families launch campaign to prevent suicide

Three mothers whose sons took their own lives are launching a new campaign to raise awareness of suicide in the south of Ireland.
Formed by three families in the small Co Leitrim village of Dromahair, the STOP (Suicide: Teach, Organise, Prevent) campaign hopes to curb the massive suicide rate nationally.
The three families live within a five mile radius in Dromahair. Their sons’ deaths took to nine the total of deaths by suicide in Co Leitrim since 2004.
“If there were nine deaths by road traffic accidents in Leitrim there would be an outcry,“ said a STOP spokesperson. “There are huge drink driving and speeding campaigns - and rightly so - but since suicide remains hidden nothing gets done about it.”
Two years ago 444 people died from suicide in the south of Ireland, this exceeded the number of deaths by road traffic accidents, which was 336 in 2003.
10,000 more people attempted suicide. Of those who died 80 per cent were male. Tragically, suicide is one of the top three causes of death in the 15-24 age range in Ireland but STOP says that “through education and public awarenss” they hope to stamp out the tragic phenomenon.
Mary and John Tiernan lost their only son Gary in January 2004. He was just 24.
“Gary was the last person you would have expected to have done something like this,” his mother said yesterday.
“He loved his car and mobile and cigarettes. He was bubbly and cheerful and was always acting the clown but he was shy and sensitive behind it. He had a job and had had a couple of relationships.
“There were a few girls who liked him more as a friend than as someone to go out with it. That’s really all he complained about,” Mrs Tiernan said.
Gary went shopping for clothes on Saturday afternoon and was watching TV with his father late that night. When his father went to bed Gary said he would follow him up. The next morning John Tiernan noticed his son’s bed hadn’t been slept in and when he saw a light on in the garage outside he went to check it out.
John discovered Gary had hanged himself.
Now the Tiernans and other families in the area are trying to start a national awareness campaign on the phenomenon of self-inflicted death which has affected so many people across Ireland.
Over 400 delegates from grieving families to doctors, community groups, youth workers and other agencies are attending the STOP conference at the Abbey Manor Hotel in Dromahair today and tomorrow.
“We still don’t know exactly what format our support group will take yet,” Mrs Tiernan explained. “We are talking to people who are involved in all aspects of suicide and will judge then how we can best serve people feeling suicidal and those coping with it.”


Gardaí arrest man 'who was burning sterling bank notes'

18/02/2005 - 18:27:02

Gardaí tonight arrested a man in his 40s in Cork in connection with the discovery of a number of assault rifle rounds.

The arrest was made as part of a massive Garda operation against money laundering in the week of the raid of the Northern Bank in Belfast.

Officers made the arrest in the town of Passage West following a tip-off that a man was burning sterling bank notes in his backyard.

The man was taken from his home to Gurranberhaer Garda Station in the north side of Cork city.

A Garda spokesman said he was being detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act.


Cancer-linked colourant prompts product alert

18/02/2005 - 14:18:09

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) has advised consumers to throw out or return some 39 food products which contain an illegal, cancer-linked, red food dye.

The colourant, Sudan Red 1, was used to manufacture chilli powder. A total of 39 food products, available on the Irish market, are implicated.

The Food Safety Authority details are published below.

Sudan Red 1, an industrial dye, has been banned as a food colourant throughout Europe since 2003 due to its carcinogenic properties. The FSAI is advising consumers that if they have these products, they should either throw them out or return them to the shop where they purchased them.

The Authority is working with Irish retailers and manufacturers to immediately recall any affected products and remove them from the market. A list of known products is available on the Authority's website www.fsai.ie and will be updated on an ongoing basis until the Authority is satisfied that no contaminated product is available on the Irish market.

The Authority's warning follows information received from the Food Standards Agency in the UK concerning the discovery that Premier Foods (UK) had used chilli powder contaminated with Sudan Red 1 in the manufacture of Worcester sauce. The chilli powder used had been imported from India into the UK. Premier Foods supplies to various branded products and manufacturers of other food products, such as ready meals and soups.

The FSAI has been informed that, following investigation, UK Premier Foods was found to have distributed the colourant to six manufacturers in Ireland, of which five distribute products here.

While 39 products are currently identified in Ireland, at least 350 food products may be implicated in the UK. It is unknown, at present, how many of these may be available on the Irish market.

Companies who have received contaminated product are being informed, and are in the process of recalling products in Ireland and the UK. Retailers are also removing the products in question from shelves.

Dr. John O'Brien, Chief Executive, FSAI, said: "The use of Sudan Red 1 in foods is totally unacceptable. Consumers have a right to be protected from unnecessary exposure to contaminants in the food supply.

"While the colourant Sudan Red 1 has been found to have carcinogenic properties, it would have to be consumed over a long period of time in order to pose a significant health risk.

"Nonetheless, it is very important that all manufacturers, retailers and consumers follow the advice being issued by the Authority in order to ensure that there is no further consumption of the affected products in Ireland."

Dr O'Brien added that it is illegal to use Sudan Red 1 in food or food products and that new European legislation places a legal obligation on food businesses to not only have recall and traceability systems in place, but to provide information to consumers on recalls, and to recall products from them when there are identified health risks.

A key element of that legislation is for all food business operators to take responsibility in guaranteeing that products being supplied to consumers are safe and legal.

List of affected products in the Irish market:

- Cross and Blackwell Worcester Sauce, all sizes, Best Before Dates: 2008, 2009 & 2010

- Pot Noodle, Beef and Tomato (Single Pack), all date codes

- Pot Noodle, Bacon Sizzler (Single Unit), all date codes

- Pot Noodle, Beef and Tomato (4 Pack), all date codes

- Pot Noodle, Beef and Tomato (Single Unit) 33 % Extra Free, all date codes

- Pot Noodle, Beef and Tomato King Pot , all date codes

- Coleman's seafood sauce

- Dawn Fresh cottage pie

- Tesco chilled cottage pie,

- Tesco Value chilled cottage pie

- Bird's Eye healthy options chicken hotpot, frozen

- Bird's Eye Traditional Meals Shepherd's Pie, frozen 375g, all date codes

- Green Isle Ready Meal Beef Casserole, frozen 400g

- Green Isle Ready Meal Chicken Casserole, frozen 400g

- Green Isle Ready Meal Creamy Beef & Peppercorn, frozen 400g

- Heinz Weight Watchers Shepherds Pie, frozen 320g, all date codes

- Heinz Weight Watchers Beef Hotpot, frozen 320g, all date Codes

- Heinz Weight Watchers Chicken/BBQ Sauce & Potato, frozen 330g, all date codes

- Heinz Lamb Hotpot, frozen 340g, all date codes

- Heinz Shepherds Pie, frozen 340g, all date codes

- Waitrose* Pasta Leek & Bacon Chilled

- Waitrose* Pizza Thin & Crispy Cheese and Tomato Chilled 430g

- Waitrose* Pizza Thin & Crispy Cheese and Tomato Chilled 280g

- Waitrose* Lasagne Mediterranean Veg Chilled

- Aunt Bessies Cottage Pie Frozen 800g, all date codes

- Aunt Bessies Beef Cobbler Frozen 450g, all date codes

- Iceland Good Choice Chicken casserole & parsley mash ready meal Frozen 400g All date codes

- Iceland Good Choice BBQ chicken & potato wedges ready meal Frozen 400g All date codes

- Iceland Good Choice Chicken Hotpot Frozen 400g & 450g All date codes

Iceland Minced Beef Hotpot Frozen 500g All date codes

Iceland Cumberland Pie Frozen 500g All date codes

Iceland Sausage & Mash Frozen 400g All date codes

Iceland Seafood Food Sauce Ambient 540g All date codes

Iceland Smokey Bacon Pasta Cooking Sauce Ambient 440g All date codes

Iceland Sausage Casserole Cooking Sauce Ambient 450g All date codes

Iceland Red Wine Cooking Sauce Ambient 440g All date codes

* Supplied to Superquinn

Daily Ireland

Orangemen pull out of Cork parade

The Orange Order has pulled out of its planned St Patrick’s Day parade through Cork city.
In a statement released yesterday, the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland said it was withdrawing from the march “with deep regret”.
Daily Ireland revealed last week that the Orange Order had been controversially invited to parade through Cork on March 17 by the organisers of the city’s St Patrick’s Day festival.
However, the proposal caused anger in Cork, with several prominent politicians and church leaders threatening to boycott the event. In the light of this, the Orange Order decided to pull out of the parade.
Cork Sinn Féin Councillor Annette Spillane described the move as the correct decision.
She said, “The majority of people in Cork didn’t want the Orange Order coming down here on St Patrick’s Day and now they have pulled out, people are happy. There was a lot of animosity towards their involvement in the parade in Cork. It wasn’t because of sectarianism but because the citizens of Cork didn’t want a family day associated with bigotry.”
Cork-based Church of Ireland minister David Armstrong had threatened to boycott the city’s parade had the Orange Order taken part. However, he said he and his family would now go to the celebrations.
The Carrigaline cleric said, “This is a good day for Cork. The city’s St Patrick’s Day parade can now be a real family event. If the Orange Order had taken part, thousands of people would have stayed away. I can now look forward to going along to the parade in the same way I have for the past five years. The Orange Order is a bigoted organisation which has no business taking part in a family parade.”
Last night, the Grand Orange Lodge of Ireland branded as “cultural fascists” those opposed to Orangemen’s involvement in the parade.
An Orange Order spokesman said, “The Orangemen and their families who planned to go to Cork are no longer confident that their personal safety can be guaranteed by the authorities.
“We are also mindful that our presence could have become the focus of media attention and protest that might have detracted from the enjoyment of other participants and spectators.”
The proposed route the Orangemen would have taken would have led them past the national monument that commemorates hundreds of Irish patriots who died fighting the British.
Seán Martin, the mayor of Cork, said he was disappointed that the Orange Order would not be visiting the city on St Patrick’s Day. The Fianna Fáil councillor said he looked forward to the day when the Orange Order could parade through Cork as part of the city’s St Patrick’s Day festival.
Mr Martin said, “The issue became politicised and this has led to the Orange Order pulling out. I’m hopeful that the Orange Order could march through Cork some day without people trying to make political gain out of the situation. Everyone in Ireland should be respectful of other people’s traditions.”
Nobody was available for comment from the organising committee of the Cork St Patrick’s Day carnival.

Irish Examiner> Breaking News

Ahern associate linked with money laundering probe

18/02/2005 - 6:23:20 PM

A trusted associate of Taoiseach Bertie Ahern is involved with a company at the centre of a major IRA money laundering probe, it emerged today.

Top banker Phil Flynn, 61, is a director in Chesterton Finance, the firm being examined in a massive cross-border police operation.

He is a former Trade Unions chief and Sinn Féin vice-president who invested in fledgling newspaper Daily Ireland.

There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing by the sharp-dressed troubleshooter brought in by the Taoiseach to handle some of the Government’s most sensitive issues.


UDA man must serve at least 17yrs

FRIDAY 18/02/2005 16:19:02

A 36-year-old UDA man jailed for life for the
"cold-blooded killing" of party-goer Richard Hamill
two years ago was told today he must serve at least 17
years before he is eligible for release.

Belfast Crown Court had heard that UDA man William
"Billy the boxer" Moore, "executed" 28-year-old Mr
Hamill, and that the "cold-blooded killing was carried
out without provocation and carried out in a ruthless

Mr Justice Hart told Moore that for "such a grave
crime", in which he shot a kneeling Mr Hamill, while
"at his mercy", the minimum sentence he must serve was
17 years "to satisfy the requirements of retribution
and deterrence".

The former unemployed boxer from Rathgill Drive in
Bangor, got the loaded pistol from his North Down
faction of the UDA, after a police warning his life
was in danger from a rival UDA faction.

Moore admitted murdering Mr Hamill in the bathroom of
a house in St Gallen Court, Bangor in the early hours
of January 19, 2003, where they had both been
attending a party.

Mr Justice Hart said moments before the shooting,
Moore, had asked others, "will you shot him or will
I", although it was unclear if this "was said in jest
or whether there was a much more sinister connotation"
to his words.

"Whatever may have been the defendant`s motivation for
behaving in this way, the inescapable reality is that
he had Hamill kneeling before him at his mercy when he
fired the shot from the a gun which he deliberately
cocked and, knowing it was loaded, placed it close to
Hamill`s left temple," added the judge.

Moore had followed Mr Hamill to the bathroom, but
later claimed he only meant to "scare" him when he put
the pistol to his head after "he got a bit lippy", and
that he shot him by accident after "he just came at

Afterward`s he told other party-goers, "I`ve shot him,
I didn`t mean to do it, I`m sorry".

However Mr Justice Hart said he was entirely satisfied
Moore`s claims were "without foundation", given
forensic and post mortem reports indicating Mr Hamill
was kneeling when shot "from a close range of less
than about five centimeters, two inches".

"It is clear that Moore cocked the gun and then placed
it very close to Hamill`s forehead at a time when
Hamill was kneeling in front of him, and then fired
the shot which killed Hamill.

"In such circumstances Hamill can justly be described
as being in a very vulnerable and defenceless
position," added Mr Justice Hart.

The judge said while it was accepted "the shooting was
not a direct result of a paramilitary campaign, it
cannot be stated too frequently that the courts will
take a very severe view of those who equip themselves
with illegally held firearms for whatever purpose and
then use them".

Moore was given a concurrent 12 year jail term for
posessing the murder gun and a concurrent five year
term for membership of the UDA.


Campbell loses Real IRA appeal

FRIDAY 18/02/2005 13:36:59

A former director of operations of the Real IRA has
lost his appeal against conviction for membership of
an illegal organisation.

Liam Campbell from north county Louth had denied the
two charges but his legal team never challenged the
prosecution evidence and made no submissions on his

The Criminal Assets Bureau had previously secured a
judgement of over 800,000 euros against Campbell for
suspected revenue offences.

Three appeal judges have dismissed his application for
leave to appeal for reasons the court says will be
given at a later date.


Man remanded on Real IRA charge

Cash was seized in Dublin and Cork

A man arrested during an operation in the Irish Republic against alleged money laundering has been charged with membership of the Real IRA.

Don Bullman of Wilton, Cork, was one of three men arrested after 94,000 euros were found in a car in Dublin. The two others have been freed without charge.

A police officer told a Dublin court he believed the notes were part of an IRA money laundering operation.

The cash was in a box of washing powder in a Northern Ireland registered car.

Father-of-three Mr Bullman, 30, appeared at the Special Criminal Court in Dublin on Friday and was remanded in custody.

Earlier this week, a total of seven people were arrested and £2m - £60,000 of it in Northern Bank notes - was seized during raids in the Irish Republic.

Others detained

The money is being tested to see if it is linked to the £26m Northern Bank raid in December.

On Friday, seventeen bags of sterling bank notes were removed from a house near Cork.

Garda Commissioner Noel Conroy told a news conference an additional £175,000 was surrendered to police in Dublin on Thursday night.

He said police were still in the early stages of their investigation.

"We see a subversive element in the movement of this money," he said.

"We are following quite a number of lines as to where the money may have come from, and naturally enough, one of those relates to the Northern Bank robbery."

The remaining suspects, who are being detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, can be held for 72 hours before they are charged or released.


Money laundering: Man hands in money in Cork

18/02/2005 - 17:05:34

Huge amounts of cash could be stashed away as part of the IRA’s money laundering operation, Garda Commissioner Noel Conroy said today.

He said he believed that people could have unwittingly taken delivery of the money in a bid to conceal it from detectives hunting the Republicans involved.

But he warned: “We ask that they come forward and tell us what they know instead of us coming knocking on their doors.”

Fears that the Provisionals could be using a nationwide network of individuals heightened after it was confirmed that one man walked into a Cork garda station and handed over £175,000 (€253,000).

Detectives are investigating claims he was given the money by a man now being questioned.

Mr Conroy said: “Other sums of money which have been moved through the banking system are also being followed up.

“We appeal to any person who has recently received large sums of sterling in perhaps dubious circumstances to take this opportunity to contact us.

“This may be a better alternative than us calling to them and carrying out searches.

“We would appreciate any help from the public on that front. We would encourage anyone with information relating to the investigation to contact us.”

Speaking at Garda HQ in Dublin, Mr Conroy confirmed that £2.3m (€3.3m) was found in a house in Co Cork, €90,000 in a car boot at Dublin’s Heuston Station and €70,000 in other searches in Cork.

He said computers and documents seized in searches in Dublin, Cork, Dundalk and Offaly were being examined by members of the Garda Technical Bureau in a bid to trace more unaccounted money.

Detectives may also travel overseas on the trail of cash.

Mr Conroy said: “Our main occupation at the moment is dealing with matters in this jurisdiction but I’m not blind to the fact that we may very well travel overseas to investigate certain monies that may have gone there.”

Justice Minister Michael McDowell praised the work of the gardai in the operation.

He said: “The investigation been a massive success so far. The provisional movement is a colossal criminal operation laundering huge sums of money. Their mask slipped. The balaclavas came off.”

Mr Conroy said the nationwide operation had been planned for several weeks with cooperation from PSNI officers.

“This is a huge operation by the Garda Siochana and will need thousands of working man hours to bring this to a conclusion.

“To date this investigation has involved hundreds of gardai from national units and from local units in Dublin, Cork, Offaly and Louth.

“Naturally enough, we see a subversive involvement in the movement of this money.”

He said PSNI detectives would be examining the money in Dublin tonight and probing links with the Northern Bank robbery.

“We will be talking to them about the amount of money and the denominations we have recovered and hopefully something may follow from that.”

Mr Conroy refused to speculate on how much more money may be seized in the investigation.

“People may have received money unwittingly, perhaps in sterling, and they should be mindful that we are investigating large sums of sterling here.”

BBC ON THIS DAY: February| 18 | 1996

1996: Bomb blast destroys London bus

Three people are feared dead and eight have been hurt after a bomb exploded on a double decker bus in the heart of London's West End.

The front of the Routemaster bus was destroyed by the force of the blast on the Aldwych near the Strand.

The bus had travelled over Waterloo Bridge along Lancaster Place and was passing a Ministry of Defence building and turning onto Aldwych when the bomb exploded.

The explosion comes just nine days after the IRA ended its ceasefire with a bombing in the Docklands area of London, which killed two people.

Scotland Yard says it received no warning of the explosion which happened at 2238GMT.

The blast, thought to have been on a New Cross to King's Cross bus, could be heard five miles (eight kilometres) away and witnesses described devastation at the scene.

Six people have been taken to St Thomas's Hospital. Three of the injured have "significant" head injuries.

A further two people have been taken to University College Hospital.

One man is "serious but stable" in intensive care while another was admitted with minor cuts.

Three of the casualties were in two cars in front of the bus when the explosion happened.

Paul Rowan, 31, a BBC employee, described how the bus was a tangled mess, with metal and glass scattered over about 50 yards.

"I saw one woman who looked in a very bad way. She was face down on the road with bad-looking head injuries. There was blood all over the place."

Ten ambulances, five fire engines and four paramedic units were called to the scene.

A large area of the Strand was cordoned off amid fears over another device and police with loudspeakers warned people to move away or to stay inside restaurants, theatres and hotels.

Charing Cross railway station was closed, preventing many people from catching their last trains home to south-east London and Kent.

No-one has admitted carrying out the attack but one theory is that the bomb exploded as it was being taken to another destination in London.

Detectives are sifting through the wreckage and the London Central bus company is to hand a tape from the video recorder fitted to the bus over to Scotland Yard for examination.

The Prime Minister John Major was being briefed by officials at 10 Downing Street about the attack. The Irish Government condemned the explosion as "an appalling outrage".

CAIN: Chronology of the Conflict 1996

Sunday 18 February 1996

Edward O'Brien (21), later claimed as one of their members by the Irish Republican Army (IRA), was killed by the premature explosion of the bomb he was carrying. The bomb accidentally detonated in the bus he was traveling in as it passed along Aldwych, London. A number of passengers were injured in the explosion. David Trimble, then leader of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP), agreed to meet Dick Spring, then Tánaiste (deputy Irish Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs), for discussions based on a 'limited agenda'. Ronnie Flanagan was appointed as Deputy Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC).


**Article from 19 February 1991, reprinted today

Man killed, 38 hurt, as IRA switches target to stations

Duncan Campbell, Crime Correspondent
Tuesday February 19, 1991
The Guardian

The IRA appeared to have changed its tactics yet again yesterday, with bomb attacks on two London mainline stations that left one dead and 38 injured in a rush-hour explosion at Victoria. Several hours earlier, a bomb had exploded without causing injury at Paddington.

All London's rail termini were closed, disrupting the journeys of 470,000 commuters and bringing chaos to the capital.

Hoax calls also closed Heathrow terminals and approach roads for several hours.

Last night the IRA admitted responsibility for the bombings.

A statement said: 'The cynical decision of senior personnel not to evacuate railway stations named in secondary warnings, even three hours after the warning device had exploded at Paddington in the early hours of this morning, was directly responsible for the casualties at Victoria.'

The IRA statement added: 'All future warnings should be acted upon.'

Police defended the decision not to close all stations after receiving warning that bombs had been planted. Commander George Churchill-Coleman, head of Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist squad, said that dozens of hoax calls were received every day. 'It is very easy with hindsight to be critical.'

The first explosion, caused by a bomb of between 2-5lbs placed under hoardings at Paddington station, happened at 4.20am. The roof of the station was damaged but no one was injured. At about 7am, a man with an Irish accent phoned the London Transport travel centre in central London with a warning in which he said: 'We are the Irish Republican Army. Bombs to go off at all mainline stations in 45 minutes.'

Forty minutes later, a bomb hidden in a litter bin on the main concourse at Victoria exploded as police were carrying out a search, and while the rush hour was at its height.

The dead man, a commuter, was the father of a 16-month-old child. He was killed by a shrapnel wound to the chest. Thirty-eight other people were taken to hospital. One woman had her leg amputated below the knee and another had a foot amputated. The youngest victim was a 12-year-old boy.

Nineteen people were kept in hospital overnight, of whom two were said to be in a critical condition.

Mr Churchill-Coleman told a Scotland Yard press conference that the caller would have been aware that it would not be possible to search and find the device in the time given.

'This is the type of incident you expect from the Provisional IRA ,' he said. 'When they get desperate they resort to any kind of tactic.'

He said that last Friday 29 hoax calls were received. By the time of the Victoria explosion there had already been 19 calls.

Yesterday's caller used a code word which had not been used before. Hoax callers now routinely give a code word so it is not possible to tell which are genuine, said anti-terrorist sources yesterday.

Ian Macgregor, assistant chief constable of the British Transport police, said that as soon as the explosion at Paddington took place, officers started carrying out searches of all the other stations.

On the decision to keep the stations operating, he said: 'It is a matter of fine judgment and balance how much to inconvenience the travelling public every time a hoax bomb call comes in.' British Transport police received an average of six hoax calls a day.

The Home Secretary, Kenneth Baker, who visited Victoria after the explosion, said: 'The concourse of Victoria is covered in blood. This is the act of murderous criminals.'

He added: 'All decent people will feel the deepest sympathy for those so tragically harmed. I am appalled and disgusted by this vicious attack on people innocently going to work.'

The Queen expressed her condolences to the victims and their relatives in a message to Mr Baker.

Neil Kinnock condemned the attacks as a 'great horror, all the more so because they were clearly aimed to cause maximum harm to complete innocents.'

The Liberal Democrat leader, Paddy Ashdown, called the attacks 'vain and futile'.

The Irish premier, Charles Haughey, expressed his 'shock and revulsion' at the incident. Cardinal Basil Hume, head of the Roman Catholic Church in England, visited the injured in hospital and said that one of them was an Irish girl who had arrived in London yesterday.

Jimmy Knapp, general secretary of the rail union, RMT, questioned the security arrangements. 'There was a three-hour time difference between the explosions at Paddington and Victoria. If there was a direct warning 40 minutes before the Victoria explosion, what were the police doing?'

British Rail's chairman, Sir Bob Reid, who also visited the bombed stations, said: 'There are a number of evil forces operating in our country. What they want to do is to disrupt us. But this country has to go on operating because that's what we are made of.'

Scotland Yard last night responded to the IRA criticism of police tactics, saying: 'Those responsible for the death and injuries were those who planted the bombs.

'For the terrorists to blame the police for their own outrages is particularly galling and almost beggars belief.'

The explosions appear to represent a change in tactics by the IRA , whose last attack on a mainland civilian target was the Harrods bomb in London in December 1983, in which six people died. Random bombing of civilian targets, which in 1974/5 reached an average of an attack every week, was halted because IRA strategists believed it to be counter-productive.


Cork man charged with IRA membership

18/02/2005 - 15:51:58

Thousands of pounds were found hidden in a washing powder box by police investigating IRA money laundering, a court heard today.

The money was discovered in a backpack on the back seat of a car when police detained three men near Dublin’s Heuston railway station, the court was told.

Chief Superintendent Phillip Kelly of the Garda Special Technical Unit based in Dublin told the Special Criminal Court that €94,000 (£60,000) was concealed in a Daz washing powder box.

Mr Kelly told the court three men were arrested in the Northern Ireland registered Jeep vehicle, and six mobile phones were also found in the car.

One of the men, Don Bullman, from Fernwood Crescent, Leghanamore, Wilton, Co Cork, was today charged at the Special Criminal Court with IRA membership in connection with the find.

Bullman, a chef in his thirties, was arrested on Wednesday shortly after 3pm under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, the court was told.

Detective Sergeant Roy Corcoran of the Special Detective Unit told the court Bullman was taken to Clondalkin station for questioning.

Bullman was informed he would be brought before the Special Criminal Court to answer a charge of IRA membership, the court heard.

Mr Corcoran told the court Bullman understood the charges.

Bullman replied “Nothing to say” when he was informed of the reason for his arrest and detention, he said.

The court was told Bullman, a father of three, worked 70 hours a week in two different jobs, as a chef in a nursing home and catering in pubs and clubs across Co Cork.

Mr Kelly told the court forensic teams were examining the cash and the mobile phones recovered at the scene.

He said fingerprint tests were being carried out on the washing powder box and the vehicle was also being examined.

The court heard a powdery substance recovered from the floor of the Jeep was also being tested.

Mr Kelly said he believed the money found in the vehicle was related to a major IRA money laundering operation.

“I suspected that from the money found that it was part of a money laundering operation on behalf of the IRA,” he told the court.

Mr Kelly told the court that at the time of the arrest he had a certain opinion of Bullman gleaned from Garda briefing documents.

“I have known about Mr Bullman’s activities prior to his arrest,” he told the court. “I’m not going to reveal confidential information, but I would have known for a long time, My Lords. I’ve known about Mr Bullman’s activities for a long time.”

Mr Kelly said that to date, forensic examination and fingerprint tests on the money, the washing powder box and the mobile phones had proved inconclusive.

Officers have been instructed to carry out further examinations, the court was told.

Mr Kelly denied he had leaked information about Bullman to the media ahead of the court hearing.

“It’s not part of my job, My Lords,” he told the court.

Bullman was remanded in custody to appear before the court at midday on Monday.


Special Branch 'blocked evidence'

The Police Ombudsman's office investigated the 1990 murder

Special Branch withheld information from detectives investigating a murder 15 years ago in Newry, County Down, the NI Police Ombudsman has found.

However, it was found there was no evidence the police colluded in the 1990 shooting of Eoin Morley.

His family alleged police colluded in the murder to provoke a republican feud between the IRA and the IPLO.

Nuala O'Loan's office said they found no evidence that the RUC had instigated the murder or knew who carried it out.

The family had alleged the RUC knew who was responsible but had sought to protect that person.

Significant failings

The ombudsman's office found significant failings in the murder inquiry, with Special Branch withholding information which may have had some relevance.

Mr Morley, 23, was shot dead in the Derrybeg area of Newry, County Down, on Easter Sunday, 15 April 1990.

The killing came amid tensions between the IRA and the Irish People's Liberation Organisation, a splinter republican terror faction.

Mrs O'Loan said no disciplinary action could be taken because the officers involved were either retired or through a lack of evidence against those still serving in the police.

Speaking on Friday, Mrs O'Loan said things which should have been done were not.

"I cannot criticise the investigator for not using the intelligence if the investigator is not given it," she said.

In a statement, the Police Service of Northern Ireland said there had been wide-ranging reforms since then, ensuring better sharing of information in the future.

The PSNI replaced the old Royal Ulster Constabulary as part of wide-ranging reforms of policing in Northern Ireland, recommended in the Patten Report.


Irish police raids net millions

The money was taken away for examination

More than £2m seized by Irish police has been taken for forensic examination to see if it is linked to the £26m Northern Bank raid in December.

Seven arrests were made in Cork and Dublin during a series of raids in which the money was seized, including £60,000 in Northern Bank notes.

A Cork man has appeared in court charged with IRA membership in connection with the find. Two people arrested in Dublin have been released without charge.

Earlier, Irish police chief Noel Conroy said those arrested included suspected members of the IRA.

Seventeen bags of sterling bank notes were removed from a house near Cork.

Garda Commissioner Conroy said an additional £175,000 was surrendered to police in Dublin on Thursday night.

He said they were still in the early stages of their investigation.

Garda Commissioner Conroy said the robbery was a line of inquiry

"We see a subversive element in the movement of this money," he said.

"We are following quite a number of lines as to where the money may have come from, and naturally enough, one of those relates to the Northern Bank robbery."

However, he refused to speculate on whether there was any definite link with the Northern raid.

He said the IRA was behind the alleged money laundering operation and at least one dissident republican was among those arrested.

Speaking in Spain, Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams said people should not be in a rush to blame republicans.

"I would urge people to be very measured," he said, adding that it was not the time "for making knee jerk judgements or trying to beat up on Sinn Fein".

The robbery at the Northern Bank's headquarters in Belfast was one of the biggest cash raids in UK history.

Police on both sides of the border have blamed the IRA for the robbery, which the paramilitary organisation has denied.

Wednesday 1600 GMT Dublin Three men arrested at Heuston Station and 100,000 euro seized
2100 GMT Cork Raid in Passage West, one man arrested
Raid in Douglas, one man arrested £60,000 in Northern Bank notes seized
Thursday 0900 GMT Premises at an undisclosed location in outside Cork raided
1100 GMT A house in the Farran area of Cork is entered and £2.3m is seized. A man and a woman are arrested
1800 GMT Raids at undisclosed location in Leinster, they end at about 2030 GMT
Search operations in Londonderry

Two men were arrested on Wednesday night during house raids in the Douglas and Passage West areas of Cork.

Another three men were also detained at Heuston train station in Dublin. It is understood that two of the men are from Derry and the third is from Cork.

A man and a woman were arrested in a follow-up operation in the Farran area of Cork on Thursday morning.

Further police searches took place in the Leinster area on Thursday night, as well as PSNI raids in Londonderry.

Police in Derry were attacked by stone throwers, with one officer being treated for concussion after he was struck on the head.

Two men from the city were among the seven arrested by Irish police.

The suspects, who are being detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, can be held for 72 hours before they are charged or released.

The money which was seized in Cork is being transferred to Dublin, where it will be examined by the Garda Technical Bureau.

Just FYI: all sites at one time or another experience technical issues where blog posting and access is affected. Yesterday Blogger was way slow and Blogsome went down completely. I post the same news to 3 sites, so if ever this one is off, you can go here and try:




PSNI officers come under attack during raid on Derry homes

18/02/2005 - 10:19:09

PSNI officers were attacked by stone-throwing youths as they raided homes in Derry last night as part of a cross-border investigation into alleged IRA money-laundering.

At least one police officer was suffered concussion in the attack.

The raids were carried out in conjunction with a garda operation that led to the arrests of six men and a woman and the recovery of more than €3m in sterling and euro bank notes.

Two of the men arrested are from Derry, while another two are believed to be Sinn Féin members.

An Phoblacht

IRA statement on McCartney killing

The following statement from Óglaigh na hÉireann was received by An Phoblacht on Wednesday as we go to print.

"We wish to extend our sympathy to the McCartney family for the loss of Robert and for the grief that they are suffering.

The IRA was not involved in the brutal killing of Robert McCartney. Those who were involved must take responsibility for their actions, which run contrary to republican ideals.

It has been reported that people are being intimidated or prevented from assisting the McCartney family in their search for truth and justice.

We wish to make it absolutely clear that no one should hinder or impede the McCartney family in their search for truth and justice. Anyone who can help the family in this should do so."

P O'Neill

Irish Republican Publicity Bureau




SF members being questioned in NI bank raid probe
17/02/2005 - 17:16:06

It is believed that two of the seven people being questioned tonight as part of a major investigation into money laundering are members of Sinn Féin.

Three men a woman were arrested in Co Cork while three men were detained in Dublin as part of the same operation.

More than £10m (€14.4m) was seized during the operations.

Police forces on both sides of the border said there was nothing at this stage to link the recovered money with the £26.5m (€37.8m) robbery from the Northern Bank in Belfast.

A garda spokeswoman said the four people arrested in Cork were being detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act in various stations in the city.

“During the course of the arrests, a quantity of cash was seized in the Douglas area, and a substantial amount of cash in the Farran area,” she said.

“As part of the same operation, three men were arrested in Dublin city last night and are currently detained under Section 30 of the Offences Against The State Act in various stations in Dublin.

“This operation is ongoing.”

A spokeswoman for the Police Service of Northern Ireland insisted it was too early to link the seizure with the £26.5m (€37.8m) robbery from the Northern Bank in Belfast before Christmas.

“It is too early to say at this stage if any of the money found was connected to the Northern Bank robbery but both forces are in contact,” she said.

A spokesman for Justice minister Michael McDowell said he was being continuously briefed by gardaí on their investigation.

Assistant Chief Constable Sam Kincaid, who is in overall charge of the investigation into the Northern Bank robbery, was in Dublin today for talks with senior detectives where the raid was discussed.

Detective Superintendent Andy Sproule, who is heading the day-to-day operation of the probe, is expected to travel to Dublin tomorrow.


Gardaí carry out more money laundering haul raids

17/02/2005 - 18:38:49

It has been reported that the gardaí have launched raids in Meath and Westmeath connected to money laundering operations.

It comes after seven people were arrested earlier today in Cork and Dublin as part of an investigation into the multi-million pound robbery at the Northern Bank in Belfast.

Three men and a woman were detained in Co Cork and a large amount of cash was seized in the garda operation.

Belfast Telegraph

700 cattle set for BSE cull on Ulster farms

By Michael Drake
17 February 2005

Almost 700 cattle will be culled from 200 Northern Ireland farms because of BSE.

They are the cohorts - born on or after August 1996 of parent cattle found to have had the disease.

The operation is part of a managed transition towards lifting the Over Thirty Months (OTM) rule which prevents animals of that age entering the food chain.

Before the OTM rule is replaced by testing and the export ban can be lifted, the UK will be required, like all other EU member states, to cull the cohorts of BSE cases.

Cohorts are defined as cattle born within a year of the birth of a BSE case; or reared with a BSE case.

It is anticipated it will take two to three months to complete this exercise.


Hurling fans asked to show passport at border

Local hurling fans were subjected to an immigration check as they crossed the border en route to Dublin last Sunday.

Mystified fans contacted the Andersonstown News to detail what happened as they made their way to Parnell Park to watch Rossa in the All-Ireland Club Senior Hurling Championship semi-final.

"We were about a mile across the border on the Republic side when we were stopped by the Gardai who said they were conducting an immigration check.

“They asked for passports but of course nobody needs their passport for a trip to Dublin so a lot of us just showed bank cards and licences,” said one bewildered caller.

Whilst the Gardai were happy enough to accept these forms of ID from most people, they apparently focused their attention on a black man and removed him from the bus. Another caller claimed the same thing happened to him the previous weekend and that Asians were taken from his bus which consequently continued its journey to Dublin without them.


Young boy killed in bike accident

The mini motorbike lies in the road after the crash

A boy has died following an accident in the Shankill Road area of west Belfast.

David Spence from the Shankill estate was a passenger on a mini-scrambler motorbike which was being ridden by an adult.

The accident happened at the junction of Berlin Street and Riga Street. Police officers are still at the scene of the crash.

It is understood the child, who is thought to have been about four-years-old, was on a mini-motorbike which was in collision with a car.

Ulster Unionist councillor Chris McGimpsey said it was a "terrible accident" which had shocked everyone.

The accident happened at about 1130 GMT on Thursday.

Daily Ireland

St Pat’s row hits bonfire site plan

Sinn Féin and the SDLP have launched a joint attempt to block unionist efforts to have Belfast City Council provide designated bonfire sites for July 12 bonfires.
The move came as a direct response to unionists on the council rejecting an application by organisers of the Belfast St Patrick’s Day Carnival for £30,000 funding to stage a concert outside City Hall on March 17.
At Tuesday’s meeting of the council’s powerful Client Services Committee, Sinn Féin and the SDLP managed to get the designated bonfire site proposal, which was due to be approved, postponed until next month’s meeting of the committee.
The parties argued that it was unfair for the council not to fund St Patrick’s Day, yet provide loyalists with publicly-owned land for bonfires.
Former Sinn Féin Belfast Mayor Alex Maskey said: “The bogus argument unionists used against funding St Patrick’s Day was that it was not an inclusive event. Well, this argument can be applied to loyalist July 12 bonfires which are definitely not inclusive.”
North Belfast SDLP councillor Martin Morgan backed this view insisting the council should not fund a non-inclusive event. He said: “At last year’s July 12 bonfires loyalists burned posters of nationalist politicians and images of the Pope. The council cannot be seen to be funding such an event just days after the St Patrick’s Day fiasco.”
Under the designated bonfire site proposal the council agreed to allow bonfires to be burned at Inverary, Pitt Park, Westland, Mount Vernon, Annadale, Taughmonagh, Sunningdale and Highfield. The City Hall also offered loyalists managing bonfires in these areas up to £2,500 to organise cultural activities. In return for this the council sought assurances from loyalists that they would not dump wood at the locations prior to July 1 and they will marshal the bonfires.
Ulster Unionist councillor Davy Browne described the Sinn Féin and SDLP block on the scheme as “nationalists throwing their toys out of the pram”.
The High Sheriff of Belfast said: “No one ever said July 12 bonfires are inclusive.
“The reason why the council came up with new proposals on the bonfire issue was to stop areas being turned into illegal rubbish dumps in the months leading up to the Twelfth.
Last year’s clean-up bill wasclose to £20,000.

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