News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties



There have been calls for a full investigation into the controversial no parking rules at Antrim Area Hospital after a Good Samaritan was forced to pay the penalty for helping her frail 86-year-old neighbor.

Mandy Mitchell was 'only too happy to help' when the OAP - who is battling skin cancer and problems associated with limited mobility - said she had an appointment at Antrim Hospital outpatients.

Offering her a lift, the kind-hearted local woman parked near to the entrance to A&E, though she was careful not to block the flow of traffic - particularly the ambulances.

Her passenger was 'a bit anxious', however, and implored the mum-of-two to stay with her until her appointment.

After receiving assurances that it would take 'just a few minutes' she agreed.

Her mercy mission complete, Mandy and her neighbor returned to the car - and this time it was Mandy who felt sick to the stomach.

In the short time since she had left the vehicle it had been clamped, and she was told 'in no uncertain terms' that it would remain that way until she stumped up £40 to release it.

She explained the reason for her short stay, and why she had to park close to the building, but neither the clamper nor his clamp would be moved.
(Source: Antrim Guardian)


Four people arrested ahead of a suspected sham wedding in Newry Town Hall on Thursday have appeared in court.

A Latvian woman and three Indian men – all with addresses in the Republic of Ireland – appeared before Newry Magistrates Court on Friday.

Jaspreet Singh, 24, was charged with seeking and obtaining leave to remain in the UK by deception.  His would-be bride, Irina Kudinova, 23, was charged with assisting unlawful immigration.

Two Indian men, Jarmal Singh Minhas, 33, and Karamjit Singh, 32, were also charged with assisting unlawful immigration.

All the defendants were released on bail to appear again at Newry court on 28 September.


Carlow gardaí are investigating the possibility that a hypnotic thief, who tricked a local lady into handing over her wedding ring, €2,000 and other valuables, may have done so before.

A 28-year-old woman who lives in the town last week reported being hypnotized and robbed by an “Eastern European gypsy” with green contact lenses and a stone in her upper right tooth. The incident, which occurred in broad daylight on Tullow Street on Tuesday 23 August, sparked disbelief among most of the community.

Speaking to The Nationalist Sgt John Foley said that a similar incident happened in Galway two years ago.

“They had a similar type incident – same details – two years ago.

They arrested a lady at the time and we are now investigating whether there may be a connection with this incident,” added Sgt Foley.
(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


A housing project that began a decade ago and which cost almost €2 million to complete was finally unveiled in the east Cavan town of Mullagh last Sunday despite a number of setbacks along the way.
The new Sonas social housing development consists of twelve homes, which are designed specially for older people. They were built under the Capital Assistance Scheme and there was 100% funding from the Department of the Environment and administered by Cavan County Council.
(Source: The Anglo Celt)


An Ennis priest has strongly defended the seal of the confessional, describing it as “sacrosanct” and that any question of breaking it would be “abhorrent” and “a serious attack, not only on the Church but on the very teachings of Christ Himself”.

Earlier this summer, the Government announced plans to introduce legislation making it mandatory for priests to reveal details of child abuse, even if they become known in confession, or face jail.

Speaking at mass in St Joseph’s Church last Sunday, Fr Michael O’Loughlin, said, “The idea that exposure of a penitent’s faults could be exposed to a public audience is abhorrent”, adding that the priest representing God in the confessional is “bound by conscience to protect the confidentiality of what was shared”.

He stated there has been a recent “unprecedented attack on the Vatican” because of its handling of claims of abuse by members of the clergy. 

Fr O’Loughlin went on to criticize recent statements by Government members saying, “Statements by the Minister for Education recommending the abolition of religious education in the curriculum and also from the previous Minister for the Environment that ‘I thought that the Church’s interference in the political affairs of the country was gone’; in some respects, these are tantamount to totalitarianism”.
(Source: The Clare Champion)