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Mayday Court Appearances - the Security Cut

category dublin | summit mobilisations | news report author Wednesday September 15, 2004 18:40author by Dermo - WSM Report this post to the editors

What went on in Court 46 today

Mayday Court Appearances – The Word from no. 46 – the Security Cut

15th September 2004

It was with a certain amount of reluctance that I dragged my snot filled unemployed head from the pillow in order to cycle down to the courts to watch the massive steam roller of justice crank into slow action. I got there early, the clock on the wall read 10.15 and only myself and four worried looking mothers sat in the public gallery. On the way into court 46 I noticed young cops with manila folders tucked under their arms swap jokes and get their stories straight for the judge later on. This appears to me to be the way the State prepares it's cases.

I was there to witness what might happen to the four may day 2004 defendants that were up in front of the judge today,.
The court began to fill up fairly rapidly and it was crammed by the time the Judge herself appeared. A young fresh faced cop snapped his fingers glared viciously at a young Portuguese couple who were very nervous and hadn't risen when the Judge appeared in the court.

One of the mayday defendants informed me that the state was going to introduce 52 x 3hr video tapes as evidence against him. The boys in blue were also going to look for more money in order to go though the tapes. 156 hours video footage and four defendants before the court today on public order charges arising from the incidents at the Ashtown roundabout on the 'night in question.' I am no legal expert but I should imagine that the majority of this footage is inadmissible given that it will not feature any of the defendants.

The legal counsel (legal aid) had said that two other mayday defendants had pleaded guilty rather than go though the whole rig-ma-role of getting their cases heard. I got the impression that she would rather everyone pleads guilty and we could all go home and 'have done with it.' That again is only a personal opinion.

The mayday cases were not heard until very near the end of the first calling. Before that we had the usual parade of cases against property which the district court usually concerns itself with. Some woman was up on charges of helping herself to 153 Euro of Tesco's goods in a fit of proletarian shopping. Some guy called Maxim was in court for some charge but appeared to have two names and thus took on the glamourous appearnance of being an international criminal. About 6 bench warrants were issued for people who hadn't bothered to turn up for their big day in court 46. Only one case was actually dealt with whilst most of them were put forward for another date.

When the cases of four mayday cases were heard by the Judge she decided that a time period of six months would be sufficient to view the video evidence. So all the cases have been referred back to the same court for hearing on the 21st March 2005. In the meantime all of the defendants have to continue to sign on in the local cop shops. The state doesn't appeared to want to bother preparing a case, instead the tactic appears to bombard the lads with evidence in the hope that they will not bother protesting their innocence, and instead enter a plea. This is very typical in cases like this which are overly political, they drag on the proceedings so as to make the defendants life a misery, and inevitably when the case is finally heard there is nothing to answer for.

Video evidence will show cops beating people up whilst they shout 'Peaceful protest' and are getting doused with water from a cannon. Everyone should go and see our justice system in action, it appears to punish those who are presumed guilty, before sentence is passed, especially anyone who had the courage to stand up to the state and go on a 'banned march.' Now we can all look forward to 156 hour security forces cut of those days events.

author by as do many other vidheadspublication date Wed Sep 15, 2004 18:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

ask for copies of all 156 hours of tape - cops introduced it as their evidence - so defense have every right to copies - would be very educational to see how the many rookies with that big stash of mini-mini dv cams which appeared over the last year are putting them to use - bet there are so many hours because they were all shoved unlabelled into a big cardboard box in the back of a van - it would also be interesting to see if the police are building up a file of the faces of people who reserve the right to uphold their constitutional right to protest

author by Legal Aidpublication date Wed Sep 15, 2004 18:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"The legal counsel (legal aid) had said that two other mayday defendants had pleaded guilty rather than go though the whole rig-ma-role of getting their cases heard. I got the impression that she would rather everyone pleads guilty and we could all go home and 'have done with it.' That again is only a personal opinion."

Even on a very cynical construction, no counsel would want to "have done with it", as it would mean not getting a legal aid cheque for the trial. I say this as a close-to-penniless counsel who relies on these cheques to eat.

On a less cynical construction, it was her job to defend these guys, and if she had any professional integrity (believe it ot not, some lawyers do) she should be doing her best for them.

author by An Pucapublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 02:11author email flannbui at yahoo dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

I was at the march on Mayday. What struck me about this comment was the fact that those chanting peacefull protest on the day were mentioned. I was protesting right at the front up against the Gardaí, the official protest had stopped 100 yards up the road at the bus stop and a few of us continued on. We met the gardaí front line of two of three deep uniformed yellow jacket gardaí and started walking/pushing into them. There was a stand off position but no trouble as we tried to push ahead.
A group of people dressed in black moved up behind us trying to advance toward the Garda line. (Personally I found them quite abusive and aggressive, they ripped the tricolour flag I was carrying from me shouting "No Nationalism" I asked for it back saying I was a republican and a socialist not a nationalist but they just didnt seem interested and refused to give the flag back.) A group of about twenty of us at the front started chanting "Peacefull protest" over and over, as we thought things were starting to get out of controol. We tried appealing to the gardaí telling them to calm down and we didnt want any trouble, as we were squeezed between them and those dressed in black.
I dont remember if the water cannon started first of if I saw something being thrown, but as soon as I saw the bottle going over my head toward Garda lines I knew we had lost. We had given in to the media hype and played into the Garda trap. The Media had their photo of "violent protest" and it had cheepened us all. I fealt the gush of the R.U.C. / P.S.N.I. water cannon and looked around to see the riot squad lineing up a few feet behind us. A few were still chanting "peacefull protest" and some U.C.D. heads were trying to link arms and sit on the roadway but it was no use the gardaí had allready won.

I still feal angry about it. Im not a pacifist but I feal this was not the time to fight back it was too carefully coreographed, we were clearly in a trap and its a classic R.U.C. tactic from the civil rights days to have a thin line of uniform police, and let the protesters break it & move in the riot squad claiming disorder and riot.

A few assholes cheapened us all. If we had marched and nothing had happened the Government would have looked like fools. Something happened and we became the fools, the governments excessively strict controlls and Garda overtime were suddenly justified. The "Peacefull protest" people could have won the day but never got the chance. We got hit by the cannon and just walked home in our wet clothes feeling betrayed.

I know that the people arrested for violence may have had nothing to do with the fight back They might have just been just grabbed by the gardaí as an easy target. There were a fair few pricks who came along fewelled with drink, who i felt betrayed by, because of their stone throwing and futile attacks.

Thats my two cents anyhow. I just wish thoise shiouting "Peacefull protest" had been listened to for a second and we might have won. Maybe we will learn a lesson for next time.

author by paulc - didn't sleeppublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 09:19author address author phone Report this post to the editors

At the end of April, during the lead up to the welcoming celebrations for the accession of ten new member states to the EU, 3 protesters were arrested on the road outside an occupied building in property-market ravaged Dublin. The House that had been occupied had been singled out by a group of activists from Dublin because it had been unoccupied and been left to rot over a period of years. ....

Related Link: http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/regions/london/2004/09/297596.html
author by tintinpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 11:09author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"A group of people dressed in black moved up behind us trying to advance toward the Garda line. (Personally I found them quite abusive and aggressive, they ripped the tricolour flag I was carrying from me shouting "No Nationalism" I asked for it back saying I was a republican and a socialist not a nationalist but they just didnt seem interested and refused to give the flag back.) "

Interesting. I am no lover of nationalism but this attack on fellow marchers should be condemned. I am sure that DGN will also condemn these actions by the BB. Will the DGN take any steps to ensure that protesters are not attacked by the Black Bloc at future events such as the arms fair at the Burlington?

author by Snowypublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 11:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

change the fucking record.

author by tintinpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 11:55author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Now Snowy, all of you lot denied that any marchers were attacked by the Black Bloc. Heres an actual example. Do protesters have the right to carry tricolors on the demo at the Burlington or will they be attacked by the BB if they do so? Whats the attitude of the WSM and DGN to this?

author by Joe - WSM (personal cap)publication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 12:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

'tintin', a member of the Socialist Party, is the indymedia resident troll. He has a thing about the 'black bloc' because at the RTS after Mayday he got into a slagging match with one of them that he used to go to school with. Since then at every opportunity on indymedia he likes to demand that others denounce the black bloc for X, Y or Z and bores the pants off the rest of us. He's obviously arrived back in college and is resuming where he left off last June.

Do a search of the archives and you'll see what I call this trolling, the same question asked again and again on loads of threads. I think most of us at this point wish that tintin and his ex-school mate would 'get a room' or get therapy and leave the rest of us alone. Tintin like europol also says that the Black Bloc is an organisation rather than a tactic!

On the actual incident as described its unfortunate that Tintins trolling make a serious discussion of it more difficult. But there certainly was a problem in that many using the Black Bloc tactic on this occasion were importing a number of political assumptions and tactics without regard for local circumstance from the European mainland and Britain.

Elsewhere because of the habit of the tabloid press in particular to publish photos of protesters along with the police hotline number and the invitation to inform some treat photo and camera journalists as an extension of the police force. This is a pretty stupid tactic in general but in Ireland it doesn't really reflect the way the media acts.

Outside of British rags like 'Ireland on Sunday' even the tabloids tend not to target individual activists in the same way. One RTE camera crew did play a disgraceful role on the night in trying to felon set people for conspiracy charges but they seem to have chickened out in terms of actually broadcasting such accusations.

Likewise on a demonstration in most (but not all) areas of Europe the assumption is that someone waving the national flag is not only right wing but also probably a fascist to boot. This obviously isn't the case here although personally I think the tricolour has no radical content in today's Ireland after having been the flag of southern capitalism for 80 years. But that is something to talk about with someone waving one rather than ripping it off them.

This incident seems to have happened amongst those who choose to go beyond the DGN stop line on the Navan road that night and go up to police lines. While it is good that so many did this precisely the reason why DGN stopped 80m short is because we knew we could not bring people up to the lines and be confident that the protest would stay within the guidelines we had issued. This is discussed at great length in previous indymedia threads.

So DGN can hardly be responsible for what happened up there. Earlier in the night and in the previous days when their had been some trouble between journos and the bloc some DGN people and some other marchers did intervene and defuse it. But even there as the guidelines had made clear the conduct of the march was the responsibility of everyone on it, something that most people, including those who intervened in the above case, took seriously.

A final note, above when I say those doing the Black Bloc were "importing a number of political assumptions and tactics" I don't mean that none of them were Irish or living here. Simply that just as Larkin and Connolly imported an IWW style syndicalism resulting in the ITGWU and the lock out others today look outside these shores for tactics in fighting capitalism. No harm in this providing you realise that you do need to adopt things to local conditions which is what happened up to Mayday. Certainly left protest in recent years is a hell of a lot more interesting then the repetitive Parnell Square to the GPO via TCD circuit.

Related Link: http://struggle.ws/dgn/index.php
author by pat cpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 12:27author address author phone Report this post to the editors

A very good response it put everything in perspective. That was certainly unacceptable behaviour by the Blockers involved but was probably fuelled by ignorance rather than anything else.

Personally I have no time for national flags and only see the tricolour as an anti-imperialist symbol in the 6 counties or if its used in the south to protest against British Imperialism. IMHO the "National Anthem" is only an anti-imperialist song in the 6 counties and I certainly wont stand for it in the south. Well apart from maybe work events where i cant get away with it or sensitive Republican occasions. ;)

As British Imperialist companies will be represented at the Arms Show I am tempted to carry a tricolour at the rally. But I'll probably just settle for ensuring that no ill-informed insensitive blockers take tricolours from anyone.

author by Wonderingpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 12:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Is it all right to wave a flag when you're at a match?

author by Joepublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 12:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

We'll I've seen the author of the piece head off to Ireland matches on his bike with a 6ft tricolour drapped around his shoulder so he must think so.

author by Barry Clavapublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 19:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The push by the Black Bloc was the catalyst that handed gobshite Ireland (media, FF/PD junta, cops) their propaganda victory.

I know it was supposed to be only a symbolic exercise but can anyone advise me as to what was the perceived advantage of giving the cops the excuse they were practically begging for?

What wanker decided "no nationalism" on the march anyway? There were Basque, Palestinian and Irish flags on the march, do I take it that they will be a regular target of the moronic "anarwkist" fringe at future RTS/Mayday etc events?

author by jeffpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 21:05author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The next time there is a march, I am going to go to it, and start fighting anarchists. Anarchists are degenerates, and must be eliminated from the gene pool. Plus, my actions will help me befriend the Gardai, who are good guys to know, especially if I am ever cycling a stolen motorbike by accident.

I will wear a brown shirt, a theatrical white eye mask, a black tie, and some nice black slacks, with nice steel toe boots. I will look nice.Yumm.

author by o as ifpublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 23:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

that's two stolen flags that have come to our attention (my attention)
one Iraqi flag was stolen from a garden the day before Mr Bush's entourage came.
and now a tricolour is reported missing on May Day.

author by mr - making good usepublication date Thu Sep 16, 2004 23:56author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well put Paul C. there should be more linkage between the people arrested on mayday and those before Mayday - perhaps in terms of the International Lega lMonitors who are interested in these cases - more to follow on this one soon.

There was a problem with a few individuals in Dublin being hostile to internationals ( and I don't just mean the courts ) - this is a problem that is replicated all over EU contries at the moment when we should have more solidarity and better communication channels. Protestors are being fitted up all over the place - don't get sidelined into the good protestor / bad protestor bulshit which is what the state trolls want.

author by Peterpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 11:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Wasn't there a fairly large banner that read No Borders No Nations?

author by pat cpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 11:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

"There was a problem with a few individuals in Dublin being hostile to internationals "

There was an even bigger problem of some of the internationals being hostile to locals. Their arrogance towards locals and their insistance of applying their political norms. The behaviour of those who snatched flags and attacked journos was inexcusable.

Dont defend the small number of arrogant morons who carried out these actions. It just takes away from the fact that the real violence on 1 May was carried out by the cops. The "Workers in uniform" even thumped some of the "media workers".

author by pat cpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 11:22author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Colin Burrows,Queens Police Medal*, who will be representing Critical Intervention Services at the Arms Show was a superintendant in the RUC. (Ta to MM for the info) I think there will be a fair number of tricolours at the demo.

* Anyone know how he got the medal?

author by You don't really get itpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 12:14author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Pat C - No Borders No Nations means no borders no nations.

author by pat cpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 12:18author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Not everyone at the demo shared that opinion. Are you saying that only the ideologically pure Anarchists are welcome?

You are being arrogantly exclusive. Remember, only a very small number of people share your views. Do you really wish to restrict attendance at demos to that minority?

author by tintinpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 12:31author address author phone Report this post to the editors

But I am annoyed at the way the anarchos are abusing the No Borders / No Nations slogan. I would argue strongly against Sinn Fein and other Republicans but I want to see them on the protest. So its as strong as possible. Do the DGN and WSM want to keep other groups away? Will the banners of other non anarcho groups be seized as well?

The whitewashing of the "Internationals" is also hard to stomach. These are the people who hijacked the march and attacked the press and other marchers. Believe it or not all of this is enough to tempt me to join Pat C and carry a tricolor at the Repression Conference. I will put a Red Star in the white part if I do.

author by pat cpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 12:49author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I dont share tintins views. I was not criticising either the WSM or DGN. Both of these organisations are determined to have big inclusive protests. My beef was with mr.

author by Joepublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 12:54author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Quit trolling tintin its already been explained to you that this happened after the DGN march so the DGN was hardly responsible for what then happened. Anyway this sort of incident happens all the time, I saw a teenager chuck a beer can at an old woman on the F15 anti-war march can I therefore presume this is something the Socialist Party support? The logic of the tabloids, which is where you'll probably end up working once you grow out of student leftism unless you cop yourself on.

What you are up to is a bit like me arguing that the SP support paedophiles because they are trots and so are the Sparts (who do). As a trot you should have more sense then to engage in that sort of mudslinging because trots are a whole lot more vunerable to it given the 57 variety of nutty sect.

Apart from that taking this sort of lecture from a member of the Socialist Party whose tradition includes the deportation, gulaging and execution of those who turned up with the wrong banners and flags is a little hard to take. Democracy in opposition, terror in power I guess?

Related Link: http://struggle.ws/russia.html
author by Terrypublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 13:23author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Well done to Dermo for going to court, and for the article.

author by eeekkkpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 13:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Court 46 is where you really see the way dublin society eats its young.

Any chance of some reports of a normal day there dermo? Would be eye opening. The papers don't ever bother.

author by paulcpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 13:37author address author phone Report this post to the editors

*changes subject* the thing on 20th monday is the actual trial... not just another date setting.. support was requested, to highlight the political not a criminal one as the courts would like to make it)... any more organising to be done... first day of course meself :/

author by 70's & 80'spublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 17:40author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Yes, very little attention is given to this by the media. I think the only time anyone took any real interest was when Nell McCafferty wrote regular reports about the district courts. That sort of journalism is sadly lacking these days.

author by pat cpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 17:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Up until fairly recently the Irish Times did a column on what happens in the Dublin Childrens Courts. IT online is a subscriber service.

author by An Pucapublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 19:08author email flannbui at yahoo dot comauthor address author phone Report this post to the editors

On the above comments to my carrying the tricolour at mayday 2004. The Tricolour represents green for republicanism, Orange for unionism, and White for peace and unity in between. It is a flag that represents ending the border that divides this island and bringing together all the people living here regardless of their heritage or religious beliefs. It dosent represent a "Nation" but all the different peoples living here when the flag was designed (1848), colonial settlers, planters, anglo irish and so called "native Irish." It was a gift from the people of France to Thomas Francis Maher and the young Irelanders at a time when all of Europe was undergoing revolution and is based on the French Tricolour of 1789.

You dont get much more revolutionary than that so why not bring it on the "No borders - no Nations" march? Of course the guys in black who stole it from me werent too interested when i tried to explain this.

Tin-Tin as for putting a red star on the white part you arent suppost to put any symbols or lettering on the flag as it takes from the meaning. Look what Guinness did at the last world cup, or at Glasgow Celtic logos being put on Tricolours. (Though I must admit if you had to put a symbol on the Tricolour a red star wouldent be far more appropriate to the origions of the flag.) A friend of mine from Labour youth once told me how he came back to his tent at a peace camp to find some eejit trying to tear down his "starry plough" which the gomm had mistaken for an E.U. flag. Just goes to show there is nothing more terrible than ignorance in action.

All im saying is that im proud as a republican and a socialist to carry the Tricolour on left wing marches, it belongs to EVERYONE in Ireland not just R.S.F. and S.F. and I respect other peoples right to carry whatever flag they want. If I dont respect their falg how can I expect them to respect mine.

author by jack white - Indymedia Irelandpublication date Fri Sep 17, 2004 20:25author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The trial of Joe and Neil (arrested before the Mayday weekend on trumed up tresspass charges)starts on Monday morning, Court 50, Richmond Hospital, North Brunswick Street at 10.30.. DGN heads will be meeting from .9.30

author by ronpublication date Thu Nov 25, 2004 22:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It wasn't the state that looked for the case to be remanded to march. It was the defence so as they could look at the videos given to them by the cops. the cops have had them all summer to look at them. Get the facts published and not biased opinion please

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