News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties


A man who dragged a garda along with his car after refusing to stop for him has been jailed for two and half years at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Thomas Ward (33) of Riverview, Ashgrove, Mountmellick was ordered to stop his Honda Integra when gardai spotted him driving in a bus lane on Bachelor’s Walk in Dublin city centre.

He refused to do so and Gardai Dean Keogh and Steven Kelly followed him on foot. Ward got caught in traffic and turned the car engine off when the two gardai approached.

Gda Keogh told Mr Kerida Naidoo BL, prosecuting, that he was checking Ward’s tax and insurance discs when Ward started the engine and tried to drive off.

Garda Keogh was almost pinned against a truck that had been stopped in traffic ahead of Ward but managed to get out of the way.

Gda Kelly was leaning into the window of the Integra at the time and was dragged along with the vehicle as Ward mounted a footpath causing pedestrians to jump out of the way.

Ward continued to drive, breaking two red lights as he turned onto Eden Quay with Gda Kelly still hanging out the vehicle’s window.
(Source: Leinster Express)


With the second anniversary of the devastating floods of 2009 later this month there is growing concern that too little has been done to ensure that a repeat scenario won’t re-occur in Co Leitrim.

The absence of any major funding for Leitrim Village in particular, has been especially galling for residents who were left inundated two years ago.

The recent flooding in the east of the country has already attracted calls for greater investment in flood prevention for larger, high-value residential and commercial urban areas and the fear is that these areas will be prioritised ahead of rural counties like Leitrim.

Earlier this year the OPW came in for criticism for allocating no funding to Co Leitrim in the first round of funding in 2011 for Minor Flood Works, despite the fact that large tracts of the county were severely impacted in November 2009.
(Source: Leitrim Observer)


A woman rescued by two men from the Mulcair River in Annacotty after she jumped in to save her dog has highlighted the need for life buoys.

Jill Baird was strolling behind the Riverbank estate in Annacotty when her Jack Russell, Poppy, went chasing a rat.

“She disappeared and failed to return when called. I decided to explore a track down to the water. I found a three foot drop onto another part of the bank,” she said.

“I gingerly looked over the steep bank into the river about four feet below to see my dog treading water in a small culvert. The river is fast flowing in the centre, but calm by the banks so, without thinking, I slid myself into the water, and was lucky that my feet found a stone to support me. Either I had to leave the dog to drown or do something about it. The banks were steep so there was no way she could have got out,” said the brave Ms Baird.

After entering the water, Ms Baird then found that the bank, as well as being sheer, was undercut under the water level so she had no foothold to climb out.

“I decided to shout for help, and luckily, it being a quiet day, two men heard me and pulled me out,” said Ms Baird. She reckons she was in the water for over five minutes but with her adrenalin flowing she hardly felt the cold water flowing..
(Source: Limerick Leader)


People are becoming afraid to walk the streets of Longford town because it is “full of scumbags,” a local councillor told a joint policing committee meeting last week.

Cllr Gerry Warnock said that these were the comments of his constituents, many of whom raised concerns at latest crime figures.

He said two other concerns were that people no longer felt safe walking through the town due to an apparent rise in drug-related offences.

“I did a survey and the three answers I got back were that it (Longford town) is full of scumbags, it’s full of drugs and people don’t feel safe,” he said.

The independent councillor said as a father, he felt concerned at the sense of anxiety that now existed within the local community, claiming Longford was currently in the grip of a “huge, huge” drugs epidemic.

“I remember a time in Longford when people felt safe to go outside of their doors and to tip into town for a pint,” he complained, as he hit out at dwindling garda resources to combat the problem.
(Source: Longford Leader)


Two petrol stations were closed and almost 160,000 litres of fuel seized during a nationwide crackdown on laundered fuel and the shadow economy.

The operation by Revenue's customs officers and armed gardai also resulted in the seizure of 39,000 euro under the Proceeds of Crime legislation.

Raids were carried out on Thursday on 10 filling stations, two private residences and a fuel depot in counties Dublin, Galway and Louth.

Officers tackling the illegal trade in mineral oils and shadow economy activity targeted the sale of laundered fuel, unlicensed trading and other tax offences.
(Source: Dundalk Democrat)