Independent Media Centre Ireland

Retired teacher Maura Harrington jailed for 4th time this year over opposition to Shell refinery

category mayo | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Wednesday September 09, 2009 16:46author by Dublin S2S - Shell to Sea

Retired school principal Maura Harrington has been jailed for the fourth time this year in connection with her opposition to Shell’s experimental inland refinery and high-pressure pipeline in north Mayo.

Harrington, a prominent Shell to Sea campaigner, was sentenced to three months imprisonment today at Belmullet District Court for assaulting an employee of IRMS, the private security company hired by Shell. She was also sentenced to three months for trespass on the landfall site at Glengad. The sentences are to run concurrently.

Dublin Shell to Sea has called a solidarity protest at the main gates of Mountjoy Prison in Dublin (9th September) from 6pm. Maura Harrington is expected to arrive there around 7.30pm.

Dublin Shell to Sea spokesperson, Caoimhe Kerrins said: "Maura and other campaigners have been trying to highlight the giveaway of Ireland's valuable gas to multinationals at a time of great economic hardship. The State's response to this is to consistently harass protestors and lock them up in already overcrowded prisons.

"The other irony is that the landfall site on which Maura was convicted of trespassing is illegal. Shell is still seeking planning permission for their onshore high-pressure pipeline. The Planning and Development Regulations 2001 clearly state that works of this nature are not exempt from this planning permission."

"At a time when the state is effectively bankrupt, it is ludicrous that a local campaigner should be jailed for three months for opposing a deeply unpopular and unjust project."

"We will wait to see whether Judge Mary Devins is as quick to hand out custodial sentences to Shell E & P Ireland for the contempt of court they were found guilty of on September 4th."

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Comments (4 of 4)

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author by Andrewpublication date Wed Sep 09, 2009 23:16author address author phone

As has unfortuantely become traditional there was a solidarity picket on Mountjoy this evening as yet another Shell to Sea campaigner was jailed for standing up to Shell and exposing the great oil and gas giveaway


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author by Eamonn O'Coilea'in - Republic of IRELANDpublication date Thu Sep 10, 2009 03:58author address author phone

My family was sadden again at your jailing for the fourth time, when will it stop : You are very brave and should not be there for standing up for the health and safety of our community, our thougths and prays at this time of great need for perople around the country to really see all the injustice that has come down on the people of Erris. We hope your released s00n..

author by li'l lulupublication date Thu Sep 10, 2009 09:48author address author phone

Same address for postcards, etc.,? Rossport people are always in our thoughts & prayers. Justice demands that Shell, IRMS & Fianna Fáil face the consequences of their doings.

author by Sarapublication date Thu Sep 10, 2009 11:27author address author phone

Maura Harrington is in jail because of Irelands reluctance to ratify the Aarhus Convention
which they signed up to 25th June 1998.Forty countries have already ratified .
The Aarhus convention links human and environmental rights ,this would give Maura
Harrington equality before the law .I will be voting no to Lisbon for the second time
because of this.

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