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Shell to Sea Protester arrested at Bellanaboy.

category mayo | environment | press release author Monday April 16, 2007 11:09author by Niall Harnett - Shell to Sea Report this post to the editors

Press Statement.

Niall Harnett, Arrested at Shell Corrib Gas Refinery Site, Bellanaboy.

Mon 16th April 2007.

Since October 3rd 2007 until now, over a period of over six months, I have been viciously assaulted, like many others, on numerous occasions, by members of An Garda Siochana.

I have done nothing wrong, nor ever been accused of any offence of law at Bellanaboy. I have strived constantly to defend my fundamental human and personal rights as well as my constitutional rights to free assembly and protest against Shell and the Irish Government. I have been punched, kicked and beaten by Gardai. I’ve been forcibly searched on the street against my will and I have had personal property stolen and destroyed by Gardai. I have had my car stolen under ‘colour of law’ by them, relief for which am seeking through the painstaking and inefficient process of High Court Judicial Review of their behaviour, which I have initiated against them. Meanwhile my car rots in Belmullet Garda Station for the last 6 months.

I have also been under constant surveillance by Gardai who film me constantly and refuse to give legal reasons for this further abuse of my constitutional rights to personal privacy.

Today at Bellanaboy, while being filmed by Gardai, I again reminded them of those rights and asked them to account again for their behaviour with legislative provision. Again, they refused. I asked them to stop filming and again they refused. I informed them that I would be taking immediate action to protect my fundamental human and constitutional rights by physically directing their video camera away from myself.

As a result of this effort to defend myself in that way, I was arrested.

Statement Ends.

For verification contact:

Shell to Sea spokeperson John Monaghan at 086 3123439

Or Niall Harnett at 086 8444966, on his release from custody.

Related Link: http://www.shelltosea.com
author by For clarificationpublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 12:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Why did they seize your car ? Was it seized lawfully ?

If you are in public you can be filmed, Same as the Gardai are being filmed at Ballinaboy.

Under what powers were you arrested today? Were you charged to appear in court or are you going to be summonsed at a later date ?

author by Niallpublication date Mon Apr 16, 2007 15:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Yes my car was seized unlawfully. They stole it because they thought they we could get away with it.

You say that 'If you are in public you can be filmed, Same as the Gardai are being filmed at Ballinaboy'.
I reject that as hearsay. Please back up your claim with 'chapter and verse' - legislative provision in other words. And read article 40 of the constitution, link below.

Arrested and released without charge.

Related Link: http://www.taoiseach.gov.ie/attached_files/Pdf%20files/Constitution%20of%20IrelandNov2004.pdf
author by Jock - mindfreedompublication date Wed Apr 18, 2007 08:49author email oconnorjack at hotmail dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well Done Niall.

We look forward to your day in court. Any idea of what charges they are going to slap against you ?

author by hilpublication date Thu Apr 19, 2007 18:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You need your own camera, just video them videoing you. And if its legal for them to record you in a public place, then its just as legal for you to video them in a public place. Believe me, they will be absolutely freaked out at the fact that you have the same 'equipment' as them, its the only way to go with it!
And if they seize your camera, you'll have it back once you call to the station for it, as they well know, its either give it back, or pay you for it.....

author by Niallpublication date Fri Apr 20, 2007 21:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

How is it legal for them to film?

You're the second person in this thread to suggest this.

Again, I reject that as hearsay with no reference to legal grounding. Just cos we hear people say it doesn't make it true. Hearsay is dangerous if we just believe it without asking questions.

I say that our rights to freedom of movement, assembly and personal privacy are protected by constitutional law.

What law do you or they say gives them provision to film us.

author by ding dongpublication date Sat Apr 21, 2007 13:00author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Niall, you've been involved for long enough now to know better. The legal system exists to protect those who run this place, and their bulldogs. Trying to use the law against them is pointless.

Forcibly stopping a cop from videoing you will get you a charge of assaulting an officer, which is something the campaign doesn't really need.

The cops are scum, and the law protects them. Until there's some major changes around here, that's going to be the case.

author by BBpublication date Sat Apr 21, 2007 16:15author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's true that there is nothing to stop someone taking photographs in a public place.

However, the way the Gardaí are using cameras in Mayo is more akin to harassment than any sort of realistic intelligence gathering exercise.

Cameras are shoved in faces, individual protesters are follwed and contantly filmed, specific Gardaí make jeering and abusive comments while filming. It's meant to un-nerve, and has even elicited complaints from visiting parliamentarians.

Comparing it to CCTV is loopy.

author by Eyespublication date Sat Apr 21, 2007 22:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

If you are concerned about filming to gather personal information then lodge
a complaint with the Data Protection Commissioner.
It's a simple procedure.
Visit the site anyway, for the info.

Related Link: http://www.dataprotection.ie/ViewDoc.asp?fn=/documents/about/1c.htm&CatID=15&m=a
author by quoted by youpublication date Sun Apr 22, 2007 22:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Niall in your piece on how to deal with the gardai you said and i will quote

"Use audio/video recording devices if you expect any dispute to arise"

author by Niallpublication date Sun Apr 22, 2007 23:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Because they are public servants and are accountable to the public.

We are not accountable to them ... 'save in accordance with law'. - Article 40.

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/82108
author by Eyespublication date Mon Apr 23, 2007 00:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Niall, you can waste your life being indignant.
I refer you back to my piece on a complaint to the Data Commissioner.
Don't write it off - it has never been tried.

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