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Anti-War Activist Arrested and Beaten in Galway

category galway | eu | news report author Saturday January 17, 2004 15:56author by Maratist - Skulk and Conspire Report this post to the editors

Anti-war activist Eoin Rice was arrested today (Saturday 17th January) peacefully protesting on Shop Street, Galway, during the EU delegate's 'walkabout' after Friday's EU meeting. Eoin was subsequently beaten in police custody - with an injury to the back of his head and multiple bruising over his body. This caused by being shoved against a wall and hit with batons.
He was then taken in police custody to hospital, where he had a head X-Ray.
He has been released and is giving a press conference outside Mill Street Garda Station at 3.30 today.
Complaints have been lodged.

author by ecpublication date Sat Jan 17, 2004 20:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Will be interesting to see if this is blanked by the media or not .

author by Davidpublication date Sat Jan 17, 2004 20:09author address author phone Report this post to the editors

They say that a 35 year old anti war activist was arrested in Galway, alleges that he was assaulted in police custody, was sent to hospital, later released and charged with public order offences..

author by Eoin Dubskypublication date Sat Jan 17, 2004 21:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Sorry to hear about the attack Eoin - look after yourself you mad bastard, and don't let them get you down! :-o)

author by heavy gangpublication date Sat Jan 17, 2004 21:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

/

author by Irish Anti-War Movementpublication date Sun Jan 18, 2004 00:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Press Release 17/1/04

ANTI-WAR ACTIVIST ALLEGES ASSAULT BY GARDAI AT GALWAY DEMONSTRATION
A Dublin-based member of the Irish Anti-War Movement, Mr Owen Rice, has alleged that he was assaulted by Gardai while taking part in a peaceful demonstration in Galway this morning. The protest was to highlight the concerns of the anti-war movement during an important EU meeting in the city.

According to Dr. Fintan Lane, PRO of the Irish Anti-War Movement: "What happened to Mr Rice is completely unacceptable and we unreservedly condemn the heavy handed approach taken by Gardai in Galway. It is clear that the Gardai have serious questions to answer. This assault on a peaceful anti-war protester is a disgrace and the Gardai involved should be brought before the courts."

To confirm this statement, phone Fintan Lane at 087 1258325.

To speak to Owen Rice, phone XXXXXXXX

The following statement was posted by Owen Rice on indymedia.ie:

STATEMENT FROM MR OWEN RICE: "Today, Saturday the 17th of January, in Galway at around 8.30 am myself and two friends were assaulted and harassed severely by several men, some of whom wore the uniform of the Gardai Siochana.

Our conversation with some EU delegates in the market in Galway was broken up. A uniformed man pushed me across the street saying "you have no business talking to that man", this man being a Dutch EU delegate.

I was pushed up against a wall by the gardai who then tied to search me saying something about the drugs act and tried to take a dictaphone from my pocket. I said "Are you on drugs or off your head, keep away from me".

Within 10 minutes of this incident I was assualted again by two plain clothes gardai. I took photos of the two men who then stopped me, demanding to know what it was I took a photo of. These men refused to identify themselves and then proceeded to bundle me into an unmarked car apparently just for asking their names. I was handcuffed behind my back and pulled into the car by my hair. I protested loudly and resisted and when in the car pressed the horn with my toe. I was taken to Mill Street Garda sation.

I was taken out of the car, by the hair, by Garda XXXXXX XXXXXX, the unlawfully arresting officer, and pulled into the station. On the way in he said to me "You've had your fun, now we're going have ours, and there's no-one here to see you now".

I was taken into the non-public area of the station. As soon as I passed in through the next door, XXXXXX XXXXXX swung me in a wide arc using my hair as a slingshot to accelerate me backwards into a concrete wall. The wall connected with the back of my head, smashing it, and I fell to the ground. Several plain clothes people then attacked me while I lay on the ground including XXXXXX XXXXXX and others who I had seen on the streets earlier.

One man stood on my neck as I lay on the ground while several others kicked at me and one man struck me across the legs repeatedly with a telescopic baton which had a large ballbearing on the end. At least a dozen uniformed Gardai stood by watching this scene.

After about a minute the beating subsided but the man on my neck stayed there for another minute using a door frame to balance himself. He kept asking me "have you had enough".

He was cutting off my breath and I could feel my head swelling with the pressure.

I was then allowed to stand up. I was prevented from calling a solictor or my family and was searched and thrown into a cell. I fell to the ground demanding a doctor.

About 30 minutes later a doctor arrived, examined me and told the police to take me to the hospital immediatly and to have my head stitched as the wound was still bleeding. I was taken to the hospital and I had my scalp glued at the back, my arm x-rayed and bandaged, and painkillers and anti-inflammatories were prescribed for a splitting head (no pun intended).

I was then taken back down to the station and told I was being released, at this stage I insisted on speaking to my solictor before signing the bail bond and this was the only way in which they allowed me see a solictor. I was bailed until the 2nd February to Galway District Court.

When my camera was returned to me I could see immediatly that it had been tampered with. The film had been stolen by the gardai as had two others which had been in my jacket. I was released into the hands of a local solictor who registered the state of the camera and took my statement."

PRESS RELEASE ENDS

Related Link: http://www.irishantiwar.org
 
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