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News from around the 32 counties of Ireland

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Antrim

A well-known local family has been 'plunged into a living nightmare' after a horrendous road accident last Thursday (June 23) robbed them of a beloved son and brother.

Leonard Wallace, who would have celebrated his 50th birthday next month, tragically lost his life when a lorry collided with his moped on the Ballymena Road near the Dunsilly Roundabout.

It was the second fatal accident on Antrim's roads in June and the second involving a motorcycle and a lorry in eight months after Randalstown teenager Shane Magill's tragic death on the Castle Road in October 2010.Mr Wallace was his way home after visiting his elderly mother Amy at a nearby care home at around 12.30pm when the accident happened.

He was transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital in a critical condition but was pronounced dead shortly before 6pm.A friend of the family who spoke to the Antrim Guardian described him as 'a man who never bothered anyone'.

He said: "Leonard was born and brought up in the Riverside area of Antrim and was a well-known face about the town, as is his brother Ronnie.

“He worked as a security guard in Dunnes for many years and was a likeable kind of a man. He also recently became a Christian which was a huge change in his life."

The friend added: "He drove that scooter about for years so he was well experienced but that's a bad bit of road. We still don't know quite what happened and the family are going over every little detail looking for answers."

He added: "We are all still in complete shock - nobody expects this kind of thing to land on their doorstep."
(Source: Antrim Guardian)

Armagh

Two men were arrested after Policeí uncovered what is believed to be a suspected dissident republican bomb-making factory at Hackballscross, Co. Louth.

The find was made around 1.00pm last Saturday when police swooped on the property, less than two miles from the border.

The men, both aged in their fifties, were detained at a farm house following searches of the property and outhouses.

Police officers found “a substantial quantity of fertilizer” being processed to make explosives, according to national news reports.

Officers attached to the Special Detective Unit, the Emergency Response Unit and Crime and Security were assisted by local units from the Louth-Meath division in the search and arrest operation, Policeí said.

The area was sealed off for a time while Army bomb disposal experts carried out a full examination of the scene.

Following the operation, there was a heightened security presence north of the border, believed to be linked to follow-up searches in the area.

The men arrested were taken for questioning at Drogheda and Balbriggan Police Stations.  At the time of going to press, they remain in custody.
(Source: Crossexmainer.co.uk)

Carlow

Shoppers in Lidl were left shocked last week after a supermarket employee lunged at a customer who had been racially abusing him.

Shoppers and staff of the Lidl supermarket, Tullow Road, Carlow were intimidated and frightened after witnessing a brawl between a customer and a staff member last Wednesday evening, 22 June.

“It was crazy,” said one shocked customer.

“I went in and there was a man who seemed to be drunk, screaming at a black man who worked there, saying that Lidl was a terrible supermarket who didn’t employ Irish people. I didn’t take much notice until I heard people shouting really loudly,” she said.

“I saw the staff member grab the customer to try to get him to leave after he kept on calling him cruel, horrible and vicious names,” she explained.

“The customer struggled to get away but was still shouting abuse at the staff member. The customer landed on the floor in the struggle to get him out, but the man who worked there couldn’t take anymore of his abuse. He lost the head and started to repeatedly kick the customer on the ground.”
The incident left shoppers shocked and children and babies crying.

“It was terrible. I only came in to get some garlic bread and I was so shaken. I’ve never seen anything like it at 7pm in the evening in a supermarket.”

Carlow policeí confirmed to The Nationalist that the incident is currently under investigation. Lidl issued a statement saying: “As the investigation into this incident is ongoing, Lidl shall make no further comment other than to apologize sincerely to customers present for their unpleasant experience.”
(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)

Cavan

A 47-year-old Cavan man has been charged with the murder of an elderly Monaghan man in the psychiatric unit of Cavan General Hospital last Monday morning.

Ian Harman of Carrickallen, Mountain Lodge, Cootehill, appeared before a special sitting of Cavan District Court last Thursday. Police Sergeant James Green gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution.

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