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RNU Expose Extortion Attempt in Armagh City

category national | crime and justice | press release author Tuesday May 03, 2011 00:29author by RNU PRO - Republican Network for Unity (RNU) Report this post to the editors

Republican Network for Unity (RNU) Spokesperson, Martin Og Meehan has praised an Armagh businessman who was subjected to an extortion attempt last week for his help in exposing a local criminal masquerading as a Republican. Mr Meehan also expressed his thanks to the Armagh Cumann of RNU for giving advice and support to the victim.

Republican Network for Unity (RNU) Spokesperson, Martin Og Meehan has praised an Armagh businessman who was subjected to an extortion attempt last week for his help in exposing a local criminal masquerading as a Republican. Mr Meehan also expressed his thanks to the Armagh Cumann of RNU for giving advice and support to the victim.

The following was written by the businessman in question and highlights the length some thugs will go to.

'I am a local businessman in Armagh City. On Saturday 23rd April I was in the Armagh City hotel for a night out with friends, when I was approached by a member of the local community, of whom I knew both to see and talk to. He came up to me at the start of the night in full sobriety and asked me would I like to pay protection to him. He claimed he was acting on behalf of a republican organisation in Armagh. I told him that I had just recently opened my business and with overheads etc, I am only working for a wage and therefore wouldn't be willing to pay anybody protection money.

He then got agitated and said it would be wise for me to pay protection money as they had been watching both me and my shop for quite a long time. I then asked him who I needed protection from and he said "them", at which point I told him they had no chance whatsoever. He then went on to say that 5 other local businesses had already agreed to pay it and once again reiterated the point that it would be in my best interests to do so.

I then asked him was he connected to a Political Prisoner from the area who is currently being held in Portlaoise Gaol. I then informed a valued worker of mine who said he would said get in touch with the Republican Network for Unity Cumann in Armagh about it. The staff member returned an hour later and said that RNU were disgusted that a criminal would try to extort a local businessman, and portray himself as a republican. I then asked would he arrange a meeting between myself and RNU in Armagh.

I subsequently met with RNU and notified them of what had occurred. They told me I was completely correct not to agree to pay anything as this person is a criminal, and this extortion attempt proves that he is a criminal. RNU told me that they are here to help and support the community and ask nothing in return. They also stated that they reject all forms of criminality, no matter how big or small or the people involved.

I would like to thank the Republican Network for Unity for showing their support, and not only to give me peace of mind, but also to know there are people within republicanism that actually care what is happening in their communities. I would also encourage any other local businesses that if this has happened or if it does so in the future, do not hesitate to contact your local RNU cumann, as they are here to help the community, which includes local families as well as businesses'.

Mr. Meehan concluded; "The above victim provides a decent service to the Armagh community and employs a number of workers. As he states above, if anyone else has been victimised, they should contact their local RNU Cumann and our members will do their best to help. Our Network also demand that this thug desist immediately his extortion racket on local businesses. RNU reiterate their objection and absolute disgust at anyone using Republicanism to hide their criminal activities and assure communities that we will endevour to expose it at every opportunity".

Related Link: http://www.republicannetwork.ie
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