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Monday, July 31, 2006

Two sentenced after perjury

The two people convicted of perjury in connection with the collapse of the Liam Keane(left) murder trial have been sentenced to community service.

21 year old David Murphy from Lee Estate has been ordered to carry out 150 hours of community service while 23 year old Amanda McNamara has been ordered to carry out 100 hours of community service.

More from RTE News on her sentence,

She had given a number of statements to gardaí identifying Keane as the killer of Eric Leamy who was stabbed to death during a fight in Limerick in August 2001.

But after taking the oath at that trial, she then claimed that she remembered nothing of the night of the murder, because she was a drug addict and an alcoholic and that all she knew about that night was what she had heard from others.

As a result of this action by her and others the murder trial collapsed.
She subsequently admitted that she had lied, had never been a drug addict, and that she was motivated by fear for herself, her child and her family.

There was evidence that she had been intimidated a number of times by Liam Keane and that her father, a taxi driver, had been intimidated by the late crime boss Kieran Keane, Liam Keane's uncle.

The murder trial collapsed after a number of other people including the two convicted denied making statements identifying Mr. Keane as the killer of 19-year-old Eric Leamy.

Mr Leamy died on August 28, 2001, after he suffered a fatal stab wound to his side. Following the collapse of the trial, Mr Keane infamously gave a two-fingered salute to the assembled media outside the court.

::.. RTE Radio Report on the Sentencing
Relaplayer required

::.. A tale of witness intimidation : The Limerick Blogger (posted February 8th, 2006 )

::.. RTE Report on the Collapse of the case back in 2003
Relaplayer required

Bus services return to normal

Bus services in the city are returning to normal following a stoppage by drivers this morning.

Services resumed after 10.30am.

The reason for the strike was due to a disciplinary matter involving one bus driver in the Limerick Fleet.

One driver spoke to local radio this morning saying,

“A driver was dismissed with effect from midnight last Saturday in relation to a licences problem. We appealed it (SIPTU) and while the appeal is ongoing the driver should have remained on the roster which he wasn’t put down to do.

He was taken off the roster. In effect he was dismissed. When we discovered that this morning , we had to take some action”

Bus Éireann has apologised to commuters for the disruption.
Coverage of the strike below.

Limerick Bus drivers stage unofficial work stoppage

Bus Éireann have confirmed that it’s drivers in Limerick have gone on an unofficial strike since 7.00am this morning.

There are currently no city, provincial or inter-city services leaving the Limerick depot, Bus Éireann confirmed.

Reports suggest the reason for the strike is due to a disciplinary matter involving one bus driver.

It's unknown at this stage when services in the city and county will resume.

Bus Éireann spokesman Barry Coyle has spoken to RTE News Saying,

"The local management and indeed the central managers are attempting to find out exactly what the problem is and as we speak we are seeking to have discussions with the trade union representatives.

As we speak, I can assure you formally that we have not received any formal notification, good, bad or indifferent from either the trade unions or indeed their represenatives.

While it is unofficial, we would try and make all endeavours to curtail this particular development to a short period of time.We would be hopeful that some people can come together during the morning and come to some sort of resolution to get our buses back and to carry our passengers."

AA Roadwatch:
There are no Bus Eireann Services running in the Limerick region. This is the case until further notice

Saturday, July 29, 2006

"The place has become like an open sewer"

As more travellers continue to arrive out in Castletroy , Cllr Kieran O’ Hanlon is the latest to speak out against them and the way they are treating the land they are on.

The city councillor is demanding the Gardai in Limerick use every resource available to them to move the pests out of the Castletroy area.

Mr. O’ Hanlon told this week how residents in the vicinity are living in fear since the travellers moved in,

“Some of them have told me they cannot sleep at night because of the noise and are even afraid to go to work. They feel threatened. The place has become like an open sewer.”

He is now demanding that the law be enforced. But that could take a while…The Gardai have insisted that nothing can be done until the District Court rolls into town which is some time in August.

So the term Grin and bear comes to mind.

Willie O' Dea also visited the site during the week.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Baby lay dead for “several months”

Gardai investigating the discovery of a baby's body in Rathkeale have revealed that the body had been there for several months before it was discovered.

The remains of the newborn girl were discovered on July 5 but information was only released to the media this week. Gardai say they have located the mother of the child, a woman in her 20s from the county who has two other children and who had been renting the house where the body was found not long ago.

One report says that the woman is understood to have gone through a difficult period in her life and apparently gave birth to the child alone in the house.

British Reinforcements for Limerick Gang: Report

The Examiner reports today that a Limerick based gang who is involved in the tit for tat shooting incidents in the city during the last week is receiving reinforcements from England.

From the Examiner,

It is believed that relatives of one feuding family have traveled from their homes in Birmingham in recent days in response to a plea for reinforcements from relatives in Moyross. The occupants of three houses in Hyde Villas and Clarina Avenue left their homes yesterday to take refuge elsewhere in the city after recent attacks.

In the latest incidents, Gardai say they received reports of shots fired at three different locations in the city hotspots on Wednesday night .Two of the reports emanated from John Carew Park and the other was in St. Mary’s Park.

Gardai responded to all three calls but say no damage or shell casings were found and that there was no evidence of any shootings at those scenes but did say that they most likely did happen.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Job fears grow at Dell plant

Rumour and speculation that Dell could cut near 3,000 jobs in Limerick is spreading like wildfire throughout its workforce this week.

The leader reported this weekend on how it’s been contacted by Dell employees who raided their concerns told of the speculation that was running rife that the future role of the Dell factory in Raheen is in “serious doubt”.

According to them, there are fears that Dell could reduce their Limerick workforce if the company moves its production to another European location with one site in Poland identified as a possible location.

One local employee said,
“It would be a far cheaper workforce and would be easily accessible to the new markets in Russia, the former Eastern European bloc countries and the middle east- there is no way Limerick could compete with this”

A spokeswoman has admitted that the company is seeking to set up a base in Eastern Europe but played down the fears of job losses sayand stressed that the Limerick plant is extremely important to them.

Baby’s body found in Limerick

Gardai in the county have confirmed that they are investigating the discovery of a baby’s body in an attic of a house in Rathkeale.

The remains are though to be that of a newborn baby girl and was discovered a number of weeks ago

The body was reportedly found by the owner of a house who went check on it after a family who was renting it moved out.It's reported that the autopsy established that the baby did not die by sinister means

Gardai have launched a full investigation into the death and say they have located the family that rented the house.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

“Hunger strike” continues in prison

A so called “hunger strike” is still going on in Limerick Prison this week after 15 prisoners announced that they would refuse meals from the prison canteen.

It all began Saturday and prison authorities say they were protesting over conditions inside the jail and have made so demands.

But this is a hunger strike with out the hunger. Just before the convicts started the strike they "cleaned out" the prison tuck shop stashing biscuits, pot noodles and bars of chocolate that they could live on while protesting.

Some of their demands include more access to the exercise yard; better food from the canteen and a rescheduled gym roster.

Willie gets tough with travellers

Residents living near Caisleann na hAbhainn in Castletroy and near the old Dillon’s Garage site have had enough of the travellers that have moved onto land near them.

For a few weeks now traveller families have been living in the green area near the residential homes and are quite frankly, destroying the place.

Residents were so upset this week that they managed to convince local TD and Minister for defence Willie O’Dea go up there and take a look for himself. His reaction was quite similar to that of the residents as he gave his reaction to what he saw to the Limerick leader tonight.

He said,

It is an abuse of the tolerance of the settled community. The place has been left in a horrendous state with people going to the toilet in open view. And the nearby houses have been infested with bluebottles.
He also told how he counted three ’06 cars parked next to the many caravans.

I went up there myself and was asked what i was doing up there.I told them i was
going about my buissness and that maybe they should do the same.
That'll teach em!

It’s thought that over 40 traveller families came down from all parts of the country over the weeks to “visit extended family” in Limerick.

It is also worth noting that the €2M halting site down the road is still not being used.

Early morning river rescue

A woman had to be rescued from the river Shannon early this morning.

Three units of Limerick Fire service attended and came to the woman’s aid near Clancy’s Strand around 6.30am.She was taken from the water near Thomand Bridge and transported to Limerick Regional Hospital.

One ambulance and Gardai also attended the scene. Local radio says her condition is stable.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Missing Limerick mans story on RTE tonight

The RTE crime series examining missing persons cases in Ireland will, in tonight episode, focus on the case of a missing Limerick man.

20 year old Aengus Shanahan disappeared on February 11, 2000 after a night out with friends in the city.Countless searches to find the missing youngster since then have all proved fruitless.

On the day he was last seen, "Gussie" appeared to be in very good form and gave no indication that there was anything on his mind or that he was depressed. On the afternoon of February 11, he called to the O'Connell Street branch of Bank of Ireland in Limerick city, where his father works. He returned £40 which he had borrowed from his dad earlier in the week. Father and son chatted and joked for a few moments, and Gussie's parting comment was that he would probably go to a disco that night.

That night, he left Cooper's Bar on Joseph Street at about 11.30pm and turned down a short laneway. This was the last sighting of him.

Gussie is described as 5' 11" tall, with short fair hair and blue eyes. His cousin, Fr Aquinas Duffy, set up the Missing Persons website in 2000.

The programme goes out tonight at 9.30pm on RTE1.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Man gets two months solitary confinement for brutal assault

To the left is the photo of the man who prison officials say attacked two of their officers with a deck scrub over a week ago.

However the mother of Zachery Coughlan (25) ,has insisted that he wasn’t the attacker and was only helping a fellow inmate.

She talks to the Limerick Leader today saying,

“Why would he do it, he is only back three weeks and I was speaking to him last Monday He was thrilled to be near home so why would he do this. He has worked so hard to get back here from England. He has now been sent to the hole in Cork where we have no access to him.”

The Ballynanty man will now spend two months in Solitary confinement in Cork for the assault which took place on July 13.

(PhotoCredit: Limerick Leader)

Two shooting incidents overnight

Two more shooting incidents have taken place overnight in Limerick city as the Gardai go on full alert and brace for more of the same as feuding families pick up the pace.

In the first incident a single bullet was fired at the house on Cornmarket row. The bullet penetrated the font door in the attack which occurred around 2.30am this morning. No one was injured.

This is the same house that had a inert grenade thrown through the front window back in June. The bomb squad had to be called to remove the device. The occupant, an elderly woman, is the granny of members of a well known Weston gang. A nineteen year old was arrested after that incident.

Then later last night a number of shots were fired at a house in Crecora Avenue but no one was injured. Gardai also recovered a shotgun last night in O Malley Park.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Man drowned – death no longer suspicious

The results of post mortem carried out on the body of a man found in the Shannon this morning has concluded that he died as a result of drowning and Gardai are now no longer investigating the circumstances surrounding his death.

Gardai said tonight,

“There was nothing in the post-mortem to say there was foul play involved.”

Foul play not ruled out after body find

Gardai are not ruling out foul play after the discovery of a body in the river Shannon this morning.

The body Alan Kennedy who was in his twenties was found near Athlunkard Bridge around 8am by Gardai and Limerick Marine Search and Rescue.

It is believed that he did suffer some kind of head injury and may have been dead for a number of days.

Margaret Bolster, was to carry out a post mortem examination on the man's body at Mid-Western Regional Hospital today.

Gardai say the dead man was known to them.

Watch a short RTE report on the death.
(Realplayer required)

Keane Collopy and Ryan McCarthy Dundon feud escalates: Report

The Keane Collopy and Ryan McCarthy Dundon feud is escalating according to Jimmy Woulfe of The Examiner.

Yesterday, the home of the widow of murdered gang leader Eddie Ryan was shot at. And a house in the Caherdavin area was attacked with a grenade-like device. It did not detonate and the army bomb disposal unit based in Cork was sent to Limerick to decommission the explosive. Chief Superintendent Willie Keane said:

“We are very concerned and we are reviewing the level of armed patrols we have
on duty in the city.”

The attack on the home of Mary Ryan at Hogan Avenue, Kileely, is seen as a reprisal for the gun attack on the car of Sophie Keane, widow of Kieran Keane, last Sunday.

The teenager who was shot is a known associate of the McCarthy Dundon gang, who are aligned to the Ryan gang in the bloody feud with the Keane Collopy gang based in St Mary’s Park. The home of ‘Fat John’ McCarthy, a Ryan associate, was also shot at in yesterday’s outbreak of violence. He narrowly escaped death four years ago when the front of his house was sprayed with bullets by a gunman using a powerful Kalashnikov assault rifle.

A number of people, including children, were sitting at the front of the house on a summer evening. The gunman and the driver of the car he fired from were subsequently jailed for 12 years.

Tensions have certainly been rising in the city over the last few weeks.And more of this , no doubt is to come.

Return to the NewsWire HomePage

Friday, July 21, 2006

Update on shootings – suspicious device found

Local radio reports today that a number of people have been arrested in relation to the overnight shootings in the city.

And more information to pass on in relation to the shooting of a teenager last night.

RTE is now reporting that he was only 15 and was not the intended victim of the drive by shooting.

Gardai believe that a man who was driving a car nearby, which was carrying a woman and an eight-year-old boy as passengers, was the intended target.

The car used in the shooting has been found burnt out in Annacotty this morning. Gardai also say that the incident and later shootings may be connected to a cross-city feud between a number of rival factions.

The Army Bomb disposal unit was called out around 4am this morning to deal with a device that looked like a grenade. It was found in the back garden of a house in Caherdavin.This could also be related to the above incidents.

A busy night in the city.

Heatwave causes fires, water cuts and extreme ice cream sales

With the heat wave that the country has experienced in the last week or so, NewsWire has a round up of some of the stories that developed from the warm weather around our county.

(Left:Warning in Local Paper)

Tuesday was by far the hottest day of the Heat wave and that brought temperatures tipping the 30 centigrade mark during the day.

This made it hotter than some Mediterranean cities. And people began reminiscing about the 1995 summer which was very similar.

In the early part of the week, people started to notice grass turning yellow and big cracks appearing in the earth in their gardens. So inevitably, fires started. And boy did they.

We heard of gorse, ditch and forest fires raging in Athea, Kilcornan, Rathkeale, Knocknagoshel, Ballyhahil, Abbeyfeale to name a few. The county fire brigade really had their hands full Monday Tuesday and Wednesday.

Clare fire service also had to deal with similar fires in Shannon and quite a large one in Miltown malbay.

Sales of Ice cream in the city went through the roof with one city centre shop seeing a %150 rise in sales. An air conditioning company has told the Limerick leader this weekend that they are unable to cope with demand at present.

Now as the Heat wave seems to be dissipating (for now), Limerick County council have warned people that they might have to cut water supplies during off peak times as it tries to maintain water levels in reservoirs.

Yes you’re reading it right, after only a week or so of warm weather, Limerick County council has gone into crisis mode in relation to the water supply around the county. The council said this week,

We are experiencing pressure problems in some areas but we are coping. People are using extra water for outdoor activities when they come home from work like in the garden and for washing cars.

On Wednesday parts of the suburbs experienced water cuts due to lack of pressure. Raheen and Dooradoyle were worst affected. Water was gone in some places for about 12 hours.

The message: Use water sparingly. Imagine the situation we would be in if we had a real summer like this week but it lasted throughout June July and August?

But rain is on the way, the grass will be saved. But it will stay warm.

Two more late night gun attacks


There have been two more shooting incidents in Limerick city overnight.

Firstly around 3am shots were fired at a house in Cliona Park, Moyross and then moment’s later shots were fired at a house in Hogan Avenue in Kileely. No one was injured in these shootings but one house sustained minor damage.

Garda say they are investigating if these latest incidents are in retaliation for the shooting of a 17 year old teen in O’ Malley Park earlier in the night.

Gardai say that incident was a drive by shooting.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Teen shot in O Malley Park

The NewsWire has learned tonight that a 17 year old male has been shot in the O Malley Park area of the city tonight.

The incident happened around 10pm outside a house in the large estate. It is understood the teen suffered two gunshot wounds to one of his legs in the attack.

He has been taken to the Limerick regional hospital. Gardai have cordoned off the immediate area.

RTE has also picked up on the story.

Shots heard in South Hill

Shots heard in South hill area of the city .We’ll see what we can dig up.

Six injured in prison fire: Report

Some more details emerging about a fire at Limerick prison last night. Local radio is now reporting that two prisoners and four staff suffered minor injuries in the fire which started in a cell.

Gardai and prison officials are now Investigating the incident and are trying to establish if it was malicious.

Read the full story from last night.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Some injured in Limerick Prison fire

At least two people have been treated for smoke inhalation and minor burns after a fire at Limerick Prison this evening.

Three units of Limerick fire service tackled the blaze which broke out after 8pm and it was quickly brought under control. Two ambulances were also seen at the facility.

It is unknown tonight whether the two injured are prisoners or staff at the jail. It is also not known how big or bad the fire was.

One of the two was brought to Limerick regional hospital.The newsWire has learned tonight that the fire may have started in a cell at the complex.

We should hear more details tomorrow.

Fire at Limerick Prison

We are hearing of a fire at limerick prison.

More as we get it.

Shots fired at Sophie Keane’s car

Gardai have confirmed tonight to the limerick leader newspaper that they are investigating a shooting incident outside the home Sophie Keane, widow of murdered crime boss, Kieran Keane.

Apparently her car was hit by two bullets early on Sunday morning as it was parked outside the home. No one was injured.

A Garda spokesman told the paper that It could be a form of intimidation to send out a message to apposing sides.

Gardai say they are closely monitoring the situation.

Survey: Bloggers Are Young Internet Users (AP)

An interesting story on Bloggers by the Associated Press.Just thought we would post it.

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Bloggers are a predominantly young group of Internet users who are novice storytellers, enjoy describing their own experiences and have a growing audience in the online world.
A glimpse of this group was put together by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.
The survey found that almost one in 10 Internet users are bloggers and the audience for this group of online diarists is growing. Almost four in 10 of the approximately 147 million adult Internet users in this country say they read blogs.

The people they are reading on the online blogs are a young, ethnically diverse group. They are mostly newcomers to writing - often writing about their own experiences. More than half of bloggers are under age 30. They were most likely to list their life and events as the most popular topic, followed by politics and entertainment.

The poll findings are based on a sample of 4,573 Internet users with a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points and a sample from a separate survey of 233 bloggers with a margin of error of plus or minus 7 percentage points.

Closed Jesuit church auctions off items

The contents of the Jesuit Church, which closed in June, were auctioned off yesterday at an auctions rooms in Sixmilebridge.

Around 700 items went under the hammer including a Regency Serving table that fetched in excess of €30,000.

Other items sold included religious paintings, 10ft Victorian mahogany dining table and 19th century marble and plaster statues.

The final mass at the sacred heart church on the crescent took place on June 30th.The church which was built in 1864 was sold to a property developer back in March.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Fire brigades battle numerous blazes across the county

Fire brigades were feeling the heat today as they battled gorse, field, and ditch fires right across the county of Limerick.

Fire were seen in Athea , Kilcornan ,Rathkeale, Knocknagoshel and even some in the city itself with Limerick fire service dealing with a 200 metre grass fire off the Dublin road and a minor fire in Corbally.

It’s due to the heat wave that the country is experiencing at the moment with the met office reporting that Limerick has already seen temperatures tipping the 30 centigrade mark today.

But it’s not just Limerick, RTE reports that between four and six fire brigade units are fighting the blaze near Brittas Bay in Co Wicklow. This also thought to also be a gorse fire.

Shannon fire brigade also had to deal with fires in Shannon town last night.The heatwave is expected to continue through tomorrow.

10:06pm Update :: The Kilcornan blaze is apparently still going and is being fought by units including Rathkeale fire brigade.

10:31pm Update:: Trees on fire can be seen in Athea.

Limerick man says he won’t evacuate from Beirut

A Limerick native who spoke to Irish media today says he’s not going to flee his new home and new job in the city of Beiruit, Lebanon due to the rising tensions.

His name is Liam Fitzgerald and he is originally from Ballyagran in the county. He is managing a gym complex in the center of the bombarded city but says he’s happy with his decision to stay on and stick it out. The UN has even decided that all of its non essential personnel should leave the city.

A group of 80 evacuees - most of whom are Irish - will fly home tonight from Dubai where they arrived from Damascus.

The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern, has said more Irish citizens have assembled in Beirut to await evacuation from Lebanon.50 people, we hear will be evacuated tomorrow.

Stay safe Liam!

Monday, July 17, 2006

Two Limerick prison wardens get a nasty beating

The leader reports tonight on a savage beating that took place in the facility Thursday last involving an inmate and two guards.

A male prisoner originally form Ballynanty, is thought to have savagely attacked two guards after they caught him using a mobile phone in his cell. He apparently used a deck scrub, a very hard brush for cleaning heavily soiled areas, to pummel the two. Fortunately more wardens came to their aid and restrained the man. But the damage had been done.

The two guards injuries were described as nasty and included an eye socket injury and a fracture to the face. They were both taken to the Mid Western Regional Hospital for treatment.

The violent prisoner was only at the prison three weeks after he was sent back from the UK.

The leader also reports that prison officials find 4 or 5 mobiles every week in cells... Good to know isn’t it?

Latest road victim named

The man who died when the van in which he was the only occupant crashed yeterday morning, has been named today.

He was 20 year old John Roche from Tournafulla, Co Limerick.

8 people lost their lives on Irelands roads over the weekend.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Man killed in Tournafulla crash

A young man has been killed in a single vehicle crash in Co. Limerick

The early morning crash happened in the west Limerick village of Tournafulla around 5am.

Reports say the 20 year old man was the only occupant of the car when it lost control and struck a ditch.He died at the scene.

Second girl dies from injuries sustained in crash

Gardai have confirmed this morning that a second teenage girl has died following a road accident in County Limerick late Friday night.

The crash which happened in Galbally, left one teenage girl dead at the scene while the others were transported to hospital with one girl having very serious injuries.However she has now died from these injuries.

The young girl who died at the scene has been named as Leanne Miller from Kilteely.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

16 year old killed in county crash

A 16 year old girl has become the 8th person to die on Limericks roads this year after she was killed in a crash late last night.

The accident occurred around 1am near Killinane in Galbally.The car in which she and three other people were traveling left the road at high speed.

One of the other passengers, another teenage girl is said to be critical in Limerick Regional Hospital tonight.

The car is believed to have struck a ditch. The victim was believed to be a backseat passenger in the car.

Watch an RTE report on the crash Here
Realplayer required

PhotoCredit :

Man sentenced in mothers killing

A 25 year old limerick man who strangled his mother back in 2000 has been found not to bear any moral culpability for his actions as he was under the influence of mental illness.

Damien Donnan killed his mother back in 2000 on April 17th at the family home in 3 De Valera Park, Thomand Gate.

And because of remission, he has already served his eight-year sentence because of the amount of time he has been in custody since the killing.

More from the Irish Examinier:

“I do not want to impose any further punishment. I do want to protect Damien Donnan from himself and also protect the community as best I can.

“He does not bear any moral culpability, his family have always been caring for him,” the judge said. Noting that the accused spent the equivalent of an eight-year sentence, with remission, in prison, he said that was about the average sentence being imposed in manslaughter cases.

The case was put back many times over the years as efforts were made to create a suitable regime that would care for Donnan and also protect the community. He had been in custody at Limerick Prison and getting regular weekend releases to stay with his family.

Consultant psychiatrist at Limerick Regional Hospital, Dr Patrick Doyle, noted that prior to the manslaughter, the defendant had been subjected to a lot of verbal and physical abuse from his mother who had a definite alcohol problem.

Dr Doyle said that the defendant could be put on medication to be administered weekly rather than daily on his release. He suggested lithium.

Mr. Donnan now must comply with all lawful instructions in relation to his medical treatment,the judge said.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Bedford row street party :just a few photos

Just some photos we took while we were passing by the street party today on Bedford row.The weather was unreal in Limerick today with many making the most of it.

The first photo was taken around 3pm and the last two photos were taken around 7pm.
Notice the gardai hanging around the BBQ stall in the second picture in the left centre of the photo.

Bedford row street party today

If you're in the city today then why not head down to the new pedestrianised Bedford row where an open air street party and BBQ will take place to celebrate the new pedestrian environment.

The €2.4 million Bedford row project is amazingly on schedule and will finish on budget.

The street party in association with Bar3 will consist of fire breathers and stilt walkers and all that malarkey but most importantly free food.

It kicks off around 4pm this evening with live music from 5 to 7.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Naked man halts two trains


A naked man held up train services going to and from Limericks Colbert Station today.

The drama unfolded around 11am this morning when the man, a foreign national in his 30’s appeared on the tracks just outside the station. Apparently he had walked up to six miles in his birthday suit.

Two trains were understood to have been delayed for around 20 minutes while Gardai removed them naked man to Roxboro Garda station.

A Garda spokesman said the man was arrested for trespassing on the railway line.

It’s amazing the power you gain when you’re naked. If he’s a had clothes on they almost certainly would have ran right through him!

Judge won't accept jurisdiction in trial of two men

Judge Tom O’ Donnell has said that it is “very unlikely” that he will accept jurisdiction in the case of the two men charged in relation to the death of Keith Ryan back in May of this year.

Thomas Ryan 23, from Shanabooly Road, Ballynanty, and Tony O’Brien 23, from Baker Place are both accused of assaulting the man on May 25th causing harm.

The judge was told yesterday that a file was currently being prepared for the DPP but it could take a further three weeks before it is sent of as more serious charges may be brought against the two men.

The judge also said that he would expect an explanation on the delays so far at the next court hearing.

Keith Ryan was beaten and left to die under the Shannon Bridge in Limerick city back in may. Witnesses reported seeing two men flee the scene shortly after the attack took place.

So more delays and a judge who wants nothing to do with the case.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Burger King banner causes a stir

A giant banner measuring 20 feet in length and three stories in height is grabbing all the headlines in the local papers this week.

Burger King has erected the promotional banner to advertise new ice cream products. However the city planners are not happy and have now threatened to serve a court order to have it removed. They say it’s illegal and that a poster of that size requires planning permission and none has been granted in this case.

Burger King has refused to comment on the story and when the council looked for the name of the manager of the store, the premises denied their request.

The council says that if they can’t get the name of a manager then they will have to get an enforcement letter from the courts. Large fines could be on the way for the restaurant.

Ridicules no?

(The felonious banner in question)

Limerick Quick Hits

This and that from here and there..

:: A manhunt is underway for three men who beat the living daylights out of a security guard at a car dealer on the Dock road early Tuesday morning. He is in a stable but serious condition in Limerick regional Hospital.

:: A 14 year old is still recovering in Hospital tonight after he was stabbed in the back in broad daylight on Monday evening. The incident happened on Nicholas Street.

:: There were 7,810 people ‘signing on’ in Limerick in June according to latest CSO figures. 6,025 were in the city. The rest were in the county.

:: Activist Mick Ryan is ranting again. This time he’s angry at the county council for charging people not resident out in the county, more money for grave plots. He claims city folk get charged more for plots.

:: A 3G mast which was proposed to be erected at Villiers school has been refused by the City Council on the grounds of health and property value.

:: JP Mc Manus has given €500,000 to the CARI foundation to help them in their quest to build a sexual therapy centre for sexually abused children on the Ennis Road. Fair play to him.

'Drugs run' gets man six years in jail

A Limerick man has been jailed today for transporting drugs for a local Limerick drug dealer.

23 year old Robert McInerney from O’Dwyers Villas, Thomondgate was found with €140,000 worth of cocaine at Dublin Port on his way back from Wales in 2005.

At the court session in Dublin today Mr. McInerney admitted doing the drugs run because he was in €10,000 debt.

He also said he was afraid to name the owner of the drugs he was caught with for fear of his life.

Judge Desmond Hogan sentenced the man to six years but suspended the last two years.

Limerick TD will go on trial for tax evasion

Limerick Fianna Fáil TD Michael Collins has appeared in a Rathkeale District Court on Tax evasion charges.

The 65 year old fromPatrickswell appeared on remand yesterday where the charges against him were layed out.

They included charges that he cheated the office of the collector general by obtaining a tax clearance certificate by false pretences and that he obtained a tax clearance certificate under the Standard in Public Office Act 2001 by false pretences.

Prosecution asked that more time be allowed to prepare the book of evidence for his trial.

He was given bail of €400 and will appear again on September 28.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

14-year-old stabbed on Nicholas Street

A 14-year-old youth is recovering in St. Johns Hospital after he was stabbed yesterday afternoon.

The confrontation between the victim and a youth his own age happened on Nicholas Street around 4pm.

The Limerick Chronicle reports that a 14 year old youth handed himself into Gardai a short time later and is now helping them with their inquires into the matter.

More gun incidents in the city

More shots fired are being investigated by Limerick Gardai, the Chronicle reports today.

In the latest incident which occurred late Sunday night/Monday morning a man approached a parked car on Oliver Plunkett Street in St. Mary’s Park and fired a single shotgun blast at the car door.

A woman in the house the car was parked outside, witnessed the gunman flee the scene on foot and was able to give Gardai a good description of the perpetrator.

This was the second shooting to occur at the weekend. On Saturday night three men armed with a shotgun, fired two shots at a house in Sunnyside Court in Carew Park.

No one was injured in both incidents.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Pair will be allowed to move back into “Refurbished house” : Mayor

The two elderly people living in a rat infested , dilapidated house in Byrne Avenue, Prospect have finally said that they will leave the house nearly a week after possession of the house had been granted to Limerick City Council at the district court for breach of the tenancy agreement.

77-year-old Bertha Cleary and her friend Brendan Harte have agreed to move to alternative accommodation. It comes after the Mayor of Limerick intervened during the week and asked to meet the two elderly rebels who refused to leave their home.

He informed them during the meeting this morning that the council repossessed the house last Tuesday on health and safety reasons and that they both can move back into the house when it is fully refurbished!

However it was reported last week that she was being evicted for breach of the tenancy agreement, not paying rent, but that allegation seems to have slipped off the radar.

The Sheriff arrived with members of the Gardai to evict the two last Tuesday but when they arrived they were met by angry local neighbors who formed a barricade preventing the Sheriff from evicting the two.

So will the elderly rebels get their way , move back in to a new refurbished house and then not pay rent for months until the council has to kick them out again?.

We shall wait and see.

PhotoCredit: Limerick Leader

Moyross man jailed for shooting at Gardai

Shane Shapland , son of a former Sinn Féin Dáil candidate has been jailed for 5 years today after he was found guilty of charges relating to shooting at three uniformed Gardai back in 2004.

The 22-year-old pleaded guilty at Limerick Circuit Court today to the charges relating to the incident which happened on May 18th of that year. He had already pleaded guilty to possession of a double-barreled sawn-off shotgun at Ballygrennan Close, Moyross at a May 9th court date.

Shooting at members of the Gardai was "as serious an offence as you could come across" said Judge Carroll Moran who presided over today’s hearing.

He added that he would have jailed Mr. Shapland for 10 years, had he denied the charge and been convicted by a jury.

Mr. Shapland fired two shots at the back of a Garda car as it left the scene of a traffic accident in the housing estate.

Mr. Shaplands counsel David Goldber said that his client was extremely remorseful and wished to apologise to the Gardai and to the court for his behavior.

Shots fired in Carew Park

The examiner reports today that shots were fired at a house late on Saturday night.

Three men in balaclavas opened fire with a shotgun around 11.35pm at the house which is located in Sunnyside Court, Carew Park.

Two shots were fired at the front door of the premises but no one was injured.The men then took off.

It’s thought a family is living at the address. Limerick Gardai are appealing for any information or witnesses.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Two men rescued from river

Dramatic scenes were witnessed at Thomand Bridge early this morning when two men had to be rescued from the Shannon River.

The incident occurred around 4.30am when a man jumped into the river to try and rescue a man that was already in the water. It’s then thought that they both got into difficulty.

Limerick Fire service along with marine search and rescue, Gardai and ambulance officials attended the scene and both men were rescued and brought to Limerick regional Hospital.

Brian Fitzgerald murder suspect escapes Ireland?

The Sunday times is reporting today that the man suspected of ordering the murder Limerick bouncer Brian Fitzgerald has fled the counrty.

Full story from the paper below :

THE suspected drug dealer who gardai believe ordered the murder of Limerick bouncer Brian Fitzgerald in 2002 has fled the country following delays by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in deciding whether to charge him over the killing.
Three months ago, gardai sent a file to the DPP outlining the man’s role in ordering the shooting but received no response. Last week, officers overseeing the investigation said the delay has allowed the suspect to flee the country.

The man, a businessman from Clare who has never been convicted of drug dealing, is believed to be the largest distributor of cocaine, ecstasy and cannabis outside Dublin.

He was arrested last May to allow gardai to outline their suspicions against him under legal caution. His statement was included in a book of evidence sent to the DPP, the culmination of a three-year investigation into the murder.

Gardai urged the DPP to make a swift decision because they feared the man would flee the jurisdiction. Last week, senior gardai in Limerick said he had again left the country.

At the time of the arrest in May the suspect had returned to Ireland to sell up his estate in Clare. He had been living for several months in a golf resort in Morocco. Despite fleeing the country, it is believed the man is still orchestrating shipments of drugs into Ireland.

Fitzgerald, the head of security at Doc’s club in Limerick, had refused to allow drug dealers into the club. After receiving threats he was shot four times outside his home as he returned from work to his wife and children in 2002.

James Cahill, the English gunman who shot Fitzgerald, joined the witness protection programme while in Portlaoise prison and gave evidence to special branch gardai against a series of senior gangland figures in Limerick, including the Clare businessman.

His testimony gave detectives renewed hope of successfully concluding one of the largest investigations into gangland murders in this country.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Gardai know teenage killers identity

Limerick Gardai have revealed that they now know the identity of the teenage boy who gunned down John Ryan on July 7th 2003.

Mr Ryan was shot by a pillion rider of a motorcycle on the high road in Thomandgate while he helped lay a patio at his friend’s house.

The motorbike was found burned out at St Mary’s Park, just a few hundred yards from the scene. Mr. Ryan died shortly after in Limerick Regional Hospital.

The teen was already arrested and questioned after the crime but Gardai say they did not have enough evidence to bring him down.

Read the full story over at Irish Examiner

City Solicitor announces TD bid

John Devane has announced his intention to run in the next general election as an independent, the limerick leader reports this weekend.

The city lawyer who represents many a scumbag said that his family are more than 100% behind him in his quest to become a TD.

Speaking to the LL this weekend he said,
I would rather run for the General Election myself and try to change the present government rather than leave them destroy the country. As an independent I would expect to take votes from Fianna Fail, where some of their voters have already promised me there support, and the PDs.

He goes on to list all the cock-ups the government have inflicted on the irish people ranging from the e-voting scandal to the recent Mr. A case.

“I am now putting my team together for the upcoming election and my campaign has begun” .

Reaction to this announcement should be interesting to say the least. If he did become a TD then he wouldn’t be able to practice as a lawyer, would that be a good or a bad thing we wonder?

Read the full article on the Limerick Leader City Edition.

No charges to be brought in hostel fire

The Australian Coroner who was investigating the a fire in an outback hostel which killed 15 people including a Limerick women has ruled today that no charges can be brought against the managers of the premises.

The Coroner ruled that the managers at the time were not so negligent that they should face manslaughter charges.

Earlier this week a leading lawyer working for the inquest said that in his opinion there was insufficient evidence to bring further charges over the fire.

24 year-old Limerick woman Julie O’Keefe was one of the 15 who couldn’t escape the flames and smoke when the hostel she was staying in while backpacking, was set on fire by a homeless man Robert Long back in 2000.

He was sentenced to life in prison in 2002.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Mary Immaculate College may Acquire Franciscan Church

The Limerick Post reports tonight that The Franciscan Church on Lower Henry Street may be handed over to Mary Immaculate College very soon.

The college want to use the protected structure as a study centre and it could happen as early as later this year or early 2007. This week it also inherited the 400 year old library of the Redemptorists

The president of Mary I refused to confirm the deal but did say that “it is his understanding that some part of the Henry Street building would be made available to the college for use as a centre for theological studies”

From Limerick Post

Mr Cremin said that such a development would be hugely positive for the college and for Limerick but stressed that the final decision will have to come from the Provincial of the Franciscan Friary, Fr Caoimhin O Laoide.When contacted on Wednesday, Fr O’Laoide confirmed that the Order "has been in conversation with parties that have strong connections with the Friary”."We are also in conversation with the Mercy Order in Limerick (the Mercy Order established Mary Immaculate College at the invitation of the then Bishop of Limerick) and also with the Bedford Row Family Project and we hope that our connection with the Project will continue,” he said.

The Franciscans announced its closure last year due to the decline of priestly vocations.

Elderly tenants refuse to move

Well if it’s not the Palaskenry standoff, now it looks like a new standoff is underway but this time it’s about a woman trying to hold onto a dilapidated house.

77-year-old Bertha Cleary has been living in a house in Byrne Avenue, Prospect all her life. However possession of the house had been granted to Limerick City Council at the district court for breach of the tenancy agreement, in other words she hasn’t paid rent.

Mrs. Cleary had a stroke recently so a friend Brendan Harte, a retired soldier, moved in to help her out.

On Tuesday the Sheriff arrived with members of the Gardai to evict the two but when they arrived they were met by angry local neighbors who formed a barricade preventing the Sheriff from entering the premises.

Mrs Cleary spoke after the drama saying, “I didn’t know what was happening. The sheriff was there telling me I had to leave my house. He took my front door key. I have always lived here. My parents lived here. I don’t know who they were or where they were from. They told me I had to go to the health centre on Clare Street and I could stay there. Why do they want to throw me out of my home?”

Brendan Harte said, “The house might not be in good condition but it is her home as far as she is concerned. I live with her now as she finds it hard to get by and she never received any notice or anything. They came around and took away the key to the front door and told us to leave, but we won’t. Where can we go?”

So the two elderly rebels hold on to there pit for another while. Below is the Photo from the Limerick Leader.The story is even making the national papers

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Limerick Quick Hits

This and that from here and there

:: Irish software engineering research centre Lero is to double its staff numbers from the current 22 staff it has at its University of Limerick base and in its partner universities and it now plans to recruit seven post-doctoral researchers and 16 graduate students.

:: The 15 year old Limerick youth who stole a car and drove it around a graveyard has been sentenced to 2 years detention in Trinity house. At the time of his arrest, Gardai claim he said, why should he “worry about somebody else’s car when he doesn’t have to pay for it”.

:: The Limerick historian Mannix Joyce was buried today. His funeral mass took place today at 12 o clock in Saint Peter and Paul’s Church in Kilmallock. Mr. Joyce was a well known historian and promoted the Irish language.

:: Limerick Youth service has received €219,000 from the Governments dormant account fund for a youth café for the Ballynanty area, according to the Limerick Leader tonight.

:: There were sketchy reports tonight of a traffic accident involving nine people somewhere in South East Clare this evening. Unfortunately the exact location cannot be established by the NewsWire; however it is under stood that a mother and her 4 children were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

:: The Limerick Fire service was pelted with stones and other objects tonight when they tried to put out a bonfire near a telegraph pole in Weston. The Gardai had to be called in.

insufficient evidence to bring further charges says lawyer

A leading lawyer working for the inquest into the hostel fire that killed 15 people including a Limerick Women has said today that there was insufficient evidence to bring further charges over the fire.

The inquest which started on Monday was set up to see if charges should be brought against the owners of the Hostel which was located in Queensland.

24 year-old Limerick woman Julie O’Keefe was one of the 15 who couldn’t escape the flames and smoke when the hostel she was staying in while backpacking, was set on fire by a homeless man Robert Long back in 2000.

The inquest is likely to conclude on Friday.

Feud related row at courthouse yesterday

More details are emerging today about the averted street brawl which Gardai say was about to ensue outside the courthouse yesterday.

It’s now believed that an 18 year-old named Alan Kelly from Delmege Park was leaving Limerick District court yesterday lunchtime when he was ‘taunted’ by a group from a rival gang outside the building.

Shortly after, Mr. Kelly arrived back with his own group of associates. They were armed with an assortment of weapons, some of which were the obligatory golf club.

Gardai were already alerted at this point and detained the group on Nicholas Street. Three were arrested including Mr. Kelly. The others were 22 year-old Christopher McCarthy from Crecora Avenue and a 16 year old who can’t be named.

The three appeared in court yesterday evening, making it the second appearence in the same day for Mr. Kelly.Two were released on bail but Mr. Kelly was held in custody for is own safety. They will all appear again on July 11th.

Speaking yesterday a Garda said “The feud in Limerick has gone down to another generation”

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Hotel managers refuse to give evidence

Reports suggest tonight that the managers of a hostel which was burned down, killing a limerick woman have refused to give evidence at an inquest set up on the incident.

A coroner’s inquest is hearing evidence this week to determine if charges can be brought against the owners of the Australian hostel. The pair claimed privilege on the grounds they could incriminate themselves.

They are watching proceedings from the public gallery.

The lawyer for the families of the backpackers who died in the fire, Mitchell Brown, says he is disappointed he will not get to cross-examine the two men.

"I definitely had some questions I would have liked to have answered ... to have asked," he said.

Read the background to the story.

Julie O’Keefe from Raheen in Limerick was killed along with 14 others at the hostel six years ago.She was travelling across Australia at the time.

Gardai scramble to stop teenage mob from getting to the courthouse

A street brawl was apparently averted this afternoon according to local Limerick radio.

Gardai received a call around 2pm today saying that up to 15 teenagers were heading towards Limerick district court with an assortment of weapons ranging from golf clubs to hammers. The youths were gathering on Bridge Street and Gardai intercepted them on Nicholas Street. and dispersed them

However three of the teens were arrested and are now appearing before Limerick District Court.

Then a short time later more people came back to the court in possession of weapons.It is not clear what the groups motives were or why they were looking to get to the courthouse.

A high Garda presence is visible in the area.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Inquest launched into Raheen womans death six years ago

"All you could hear was the fire and things crackling, the floorboards, walls, paint, it was just crazy" - survivor

An inquest has been launched into the deaths of 15 people including a Raheen woman, who died when the hostel they were staying in was set on fire.

The incident happened in an Australian hostel six years ago. 24 year-old Limerick woman Julie O’Keefe was one of the 15 who couldn’t escape the flames and smoke.

A Homeless man, Robert Long was found guilty of the crime and sentenced to life.

However a coroner’s inquest into the tragedy has reopened this week to see if charges should be brought against the owners of the Hostel which was located in Queensland.

Fire officials gave an account during the inquest this week of how they found charred bodies under a window blocked with steel bars, and a bunk bed blocked the room’s only emergency exit.

It is scheduled to run all week with findings possibly to be handed down by next Friday.

Relatives of the Limerick victim are expected to attend.

BBC News Story on the fire back in 2000.

Eddie Creighton is new Cathaoirleach

A new Cathaoirleach has been chosen at Limerick County Council.

PD Eddie Creighton who is based in Hospital, Co. Limerick was elected by 15 votes to 11 during Fridays AGM.

He spoke to local radio station Live95FM,

“The next 12 months are going to be frantic, a general election coming up in some part of it. Calmness and proper debate will always take place here at this council and we will all walk out of here friends at the end of the year , no matter what happens and without creating any friction within each other.”

He is replacing Councilor Bridget Teefy.

Late night crash leaves one in Hospital

One person was left injured last night after a two car crash on the new bypass near carew park.

The incident happened around 1:15am when the two cars collided on the inbound lane of the new dual carriageway.

Two units of Limerick Fire Brigade attended the scene where they removed a 25 year old woman from one of the cars.

The woman was taken by ambulance to the Limerick Regional Hospital.Three others were treated at the scene.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Raids: Two men in court - Woman still being held

Two men appeared in Court Yesterday in relation to the raids which took place on Thursday.

Aidan Radmall, 35, of 4 Clonile, Old Cratloe Road in Limerick was charged with possession of two pistols, a sub-machine gun and a stun gun for an unlawful purpose and also charges relating to the possession of Heroin to supply at Cecil street on June 29th.

Philip Collopy , 45 from St Munchin's Street also appeared to face a charge of obstructing Garda activity when they raided a row of houses in St Mary's Park all owned by him or his associates. Locals say that this group own at least 5 houses in one block.

Mr. Collopy was released on bail while Mr. Radmall was remanded in custody.

Meanwhile a woman in her 20’s is still being questioned by Gardai after the raids.

Watch RTE News report on the court Appearances Here
Realplayer required

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Arrested man was recently released from prison

One of the men arrested in Thursdays Garda raids had just been released from prison before the raids it has been revealed.

The Independent reports that he served a lengthy sentence for firearms offences.He is described as a well-known Limerick criminal.

The following is from The Irish Independent:

A well-known Limerick criminal along with another man, who has not been linked to the local gang scene in the past, were arrested at two separate addresses in the city centre and on the south side of the city at around 4pm on Thursday afternoon

One of the the men, who is in his late 30s, is a well known Limerick criminal who was recently released from prison where he served a lengthy sentence for firearms offences. It is understood that he has recently aligned himself with the Limerick gang once led by murdered crime boss Kieran Keane. The second man, also in his 30s, was known to gardai but was not linked in the past to any of Limerick's main gangs.

The raids, carried out by 50 Gardai took place on Thursday.