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News from Ireland - news from around the 32 counties

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ANTRIM

Detectives leading the investigation into the sudden death of a disabled resident in a Randalstown nursing home are still treating it as murder, the Antrim Guardian can reveal.

The probe into the death of former Muckamore Abbey patient Seamus McCollum has been blighted by delays from day one.

The alarm was raised initially in September 2011 when paramedics were called to Maine Private Nursing Home after the 56-year-old was found unresponsive.

At the outset, Mr. McCollum's passing, while sudden, was not considered suspicious. Indeed, it was six months until the P.S.N.I. returned to the premises on the Ahoghill Road.

Investigators revealed that they were spurred into action following the completion of detailed pathologist reports, which expressed “concerns.” It is understood that these largely centered on the cause of marks found on the deceased's neck.
[Source: Antrim Guardian]

ARMAGH

A further spate of indiscriminate dumping of the toxic waste from illegal fuel laundering has once again blighted the south Armagh countryside, with at least six incidents occurring throughout the area two weeks ago.

Angry residents, exasperated by a perceived lack of progress by any involved agencies in bringing this practice to an end, have voiced their fury to The Examiner about what some describe as a “hopeless situation, with more and more dumping happening every week.”

The latest finds have prompted calls from landowners and local people living in the affected areas for improved government initiatives to be set up, public meetings involving all agencies and governing bodies to be held, as well as more involvement from M.L.A.’s and M.P.’s, the P.S.N.I. and Customs and Excise in searching for plausible solutions to the epidemic.
[Source: Examiner Newspaper]

CARLOW

He descended on Carlow in a blaze of fake tan, tweets and dulcet Geordie tones.

James Tindale, the star of MTV’s Geordie Shore, who classes himself as “a professional poser,” definitely didn’t disappoint Wednesday, September 26 when he made a guest appearance in Scraggs Alley and The Foundry as part of an I.T. Carlow student night.

The Geordie stud was the quintessential nice guy and incredibly patient as he posed for hundreds of snaps with eager fans.
[Source: Carlow Nationalist]

CAVAN

Almost 12 percent of the population in County Cavan are non-Irish nationals, according to the latest analysis of Census 2011.

The Central Statistics Office released the figures today, showing that 8,409 (or 11.6 percent) non-Irish nationals were living in the county at the time of the Census last year.

This is largely in line with the national average of 12 percent.

Of the non-Irish nationals residing in Co. Cavan, 2,118 were U.K. nationals (the largest non-Irish nationality in the county), followed by Polish nationals with 1,889 persons.
[Source: The Anglo Celt]

CLARE

A multi-agency approach is needed in Clare to tackle the scourge of heroin abuse. The proposal comes against the background of complaints that the illicit substance is readily available in Ennis and surrounding areas.

Clare Gardaí (police) has confirmed there is an increase in the use and availability of heroin on the streets in the county, in line with national and regional trends.
 [Source: Clare Champion]

CORK

Third time was a charm for Bishopstown man Francis Hynes, who was spotted by millions enjoying a spot of golf in his Cork jersey Friday, September 28 at the Ryder Cup. Francis, who was over in Chicago for the week playing golf, made a chance television appearance when he managed to get to the front of the crowd at day one of proceedings at Medinah, much to the amusement of thousands who were watching at home in Ireland.

“I had been at a couple of the practice days with my father,” says Francis, “but that particular day I was on my own, I didn’t even think about it to be honest with you. I was walking along and a guy with a camera asked if he could get a photo of me and I thought that was it. I also saw three Kerry jerseys and there was a Mayo and a Wexford jersey there as well so it didn’t even cross my mind that people at home would see it.”

This was Francis’s third Ryder Cup and so far luck is on his side as Europe have won the contest each time he has gone, although heading in to Sunday, a win seemed almost impossible.
[Source: Cork Independent]

DERRY

The North’s economic recovery will be damaged if significant upcoming anniversaries are blighted by violence, Martin McGuinness has warned.

The Deputy First Minister said negative headlines about the region would hit the prospects of foreign direct investment.

Mr. McGuinness also told the assembly that work on the long-awaited and, at times, controversial Cohesion, Sharing and Integration (C.S.I.) Strategy was nearing completion.

The centenary of the signing of the pro-Union Ulster Covenant two weekends ago passed off without disorder in the midst of a major security operation. It followed a summer when violence did flare over parading issues in north Belfast.

The next 10 years will see a number of potentially sensitive anniversaries, including the 1916 Easter Rising and Battle of the Somme.
[Source: Derry Journal]

DONEGAL

A Donegal coroner has criticised the online culture of websites that detail alarming information on self-harm and suicide methods, saying “we can no longer bury our heads in the sand” on the issue.

Coroner John Cannon made his remarks at Letterkenny Coroners Court, which heard the inquests of three deaths by suicide that occurred just weeks apart last December and January.

He said he has researched this topic recently and his findings made him “so angry” such information was available and, in some cases, was goading people to harm themselves or die by suicide. He called for such material to be controlled.
[Source: Donegal Democrat]

DOWN

A gang who locked in two men at the back of a bar in Newry, County Down, and then set the pub on fire could have caused their deaths, it has been claimed.

It is believed four men burst into McCoy's Bar on Kilmorey Street at about 11:30 p.m. on Sunday last and tied up two members of staff in the backyard.

They sprinkled petrol in the pub and set it alight, leaving the men trapped.

Firefighters heard the men shouting for help and used a ladder to rescue them.
[Source: BBC News]

DUBLIN

A taxi driver, who starred in the TV3 reality series Tallafornia, has been convicted and fined $3,250 for having green diesel in his BMW car.

Cormac Brannigan (30), known as the "Corminator,” with an address at Woodbrook Court, Castleknock Dublin was prosecuted by the Revenue Commissioners for an offense under the Finance Act, which on conviction carries a fine but no jail sentence.

Last Wednesday at Dublin District Court, he pleaded guilty to having marked mineral oil containing blue dye in his car's fuel tank, at Airton Road Garda (police) pound in Tallaght, on January 10, 2011.
[Source: Evening Herald]

FERMANAGH

A part-time receptionist at the Erne Hospital in Enniskillen has told the jury at the murder trial of Trillick man Barry McCarney that tragic 15-month-old baby Millie was brought to the hospital with a burnt finger just five days before she died of a head injury.

McCarney, who was not Millie’s biological father, is charged with the murder, causing grievous bodily harm and sexually assaulting the infant. He had been living with the baby’s mother at a house at Glebe Park in Enniskillen at the time it is alleged he carried out the murder.

Rachel Martin, the 27-year-old mother, is also on trial charged with child cruelty by willful neglect and allowing the death of her daughter.
[Source: Fermanagh Herald]

GALWAY

Galway has joined cuisine royalty with the awarding of the city’s first Michelin Star.

Aniar Restaurant on Dominick Street won the prestigious accolade after being visited by a team of clandestine restaurant experts over half a dozen times.

Its inclusion in the Michelin Star Guide 2013 for Great Britain and Ireland is all the more remarkable given that the eatery is just over one-year-old. It now belongs to an exclusive club of just seven restaurants in the country which boast a Michelin Star – with only one other outside the capital, the Cliff House Hotel in Waterford.
[Source: Galway Bay FM]

KERRY

Kerry has received their lowest number of all-star football nominations in almost two decades, with Colm Cooper the sole representative among the 45 players left standing.

Naturally the nominations for the G.A.A./G.P.A. All-Stars, sponsored by Opel, are dominated by players from All-Ireland champions Donegal and beaten finalists Mayo.

But for Kerry, it is their smallest haul of nominees in the qualifier era and a return to figures more associated with the mid-1990s, when they hit their last significant slump.
[Source: Irish Independent]

KILDARE

In future the H.S.E. will only deal with emergencies and children will have to travel to clinics in Naas, Newbridge, Kilcullen or Baltinglass to access such treatment.

The embargo on recruitment in the public service is being blamed for the closure of the Athy clinic, but that is no consolation to parents and children who are angry at the removal of this most critical service.

Regina Roche from Athy is the mother of a seven-year-old girl. She said that the closure of the dental clinic in Athy is another example of badly-needed services being lost. “Athy is the most southerly town in the county, and we have already had an announcement that Kavanagh’s bus service is to cut back its Athy services. We are being told that we have to go to other towns to access emergency care but not everyone has a car and this is a town where public transport is not consistent.”
[Source: Kildare Nationalist]

KILKENNY

Kilkenny team manager Brian Cody paid tribute to Kilkenny’s supporters at the historic homecoming in Nowlan Park.

Staged at the county grounds for the first time ever, the team manager said that despite being outnumbered in Croke Park, Kilkenny supporters roared on the crowd and were a fantastic lift to the team as the county claimed its 34th All-Ireland title.
[Source: Kilkenny People]

LAOIS

Cash-strapped Laois County Council will have to splash out on upgrading three critical road junctions, one of which is already at capacity, before two multi-million dollar Portlaoise school projects proceed to construction phase next year.

Fine Gael Deputy Charlie Flanagan told the Leinster Express he met with senior officials from the Department of Education & Skills (DoES) and they revealed that plans for the schools were “on target.”

And considering road upgrades were necessary to facilitate extra traffic to the Summerhill campus, he explained that Laois County Council “notwithstanding the current budgetary constraints they are operating in, will have to prioritise the upgrades.”
[Source: Leinster Express]

LEITRIM

E.U. Commissioner for Energy Gúnther Oettinger has informed Drumshanbo Senator Paschal Mooney that no decisions should be taken on hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” for 10 years.

The commissioner’s opinion was in response to a serious of questions from Senator Mooney at a meeting of Joint Oireachtas Committee on Transport Energy and Communications, which the commissioner attended during his visit to Ireland two weeks ago.

In a series of questions submitted by Senator Mooney about the E.U. Commissions Policy on fracking, Commissioner Gúnther Oettinger replied that he believed no decisions should be taken until the environmental impact of fracking was established, and that could take between five and 10 years. He further informed Senator Mooney that he was already in discussions with scientists and those with technical expertise and has opened a dialogue with the Polish Government where fracking has already commenced. The commissioner revealed that the extraction of shale gas could be chemical-free in a number of years, which is a major point of controversy, and he intended to visit the United States next spring to see at first-hand how shale gas is extracted.
[Source: Leitrim Observer]

LIMERICK

It was less “Horse Outside” and more “I Wanna Fight Your Father” as Rubberbandits video star Madeline Mulqueen was “punched in the face” in a fast-food restaurant in Dublin on Saturday, September 29.

The Kildimo model was attacked by an unknown woman as she defended a cashier in McDonald’s on Grafton Street.

The 22-year-old star of the “Horse Outside” video and Republic of Telly, who has worked in the hospitality industry, was shocked at the woman’s “very rude and aggressive” behavior.

“It was so frustrating that she was being so rude and no one was doing anything about it, so I said to the manager that I had seen her hand over a fiver, not anything more,” said Madeline.

“She obviously heard me and ran straight over and punched me in the face! I was sitting down. Then she tried to throw a milkshake at me, missed and got someone else. It was disgraceful behavior.”
[Source: Limerick Leader]

LONGFORD

A 32-year-old man originally from the Middle East had his hand reattached to his arm at St James’ Hospital two weekends ago after he accidentally severed it while using a band saw in a meat shop in Longford Town.

The man, believed to be living in the Longford area, had entered Oasis Food Store on Great Water Street in the town at approximately 6 p.m. on Thursday, September 27.

It is understood he had intended to purchase meat from the Halal store and was told by the attendant behind the counter to wait until evening prayers were finished.

The man then made his way behind the counter and proceeded to cut the meat by himself using a band saw located inside the premises.
[Source: Longford Leader]

LOUTH

Dundalk Town Council has served a notice on a property on the Avenue Road in the town.

This week D.T.C. notified the owner of the property, Mr. Oliver Kelly of Carrinshego, Culleville, Castleblayney, County Monaghan that the structure, known as the Blakely Houses, was now deemed to be a “dangerous structure” under the local authority laws.

The notice says that as a formal request by the council to the owner to carry repairs on the fire-damaged property had not been met by April of this year, that the council now have the right to enter the land and demolish the building. It is believed that unknown to the owner the derelict site had been frequented by local drug users.
[Source: Dundalk Democrat]

MAYO

Unless the G.A.A. takes serious steps to tackle the issue of on-field violence, more and more assault cases arising from G.A.A. games will appear before the courts.

That’s the verdict of a Kiltimagh man who was assaulted by an opposing player minutes after the final whistle of a championship game last year.

Darragh Sloyan (27) was the victim of an assault by Davitts G.A.A. player James Cummins after a Mayo Club Championship match between Kiltimagh and Davitts in Ballindine on June 12, 2011. Mr. Sloyan was left with a broken nose, which required two operations to correct.

Now, speaking after the D.P.P. case against Cummins was finalized in court Friday, September 28. Sloyan has said that too many assaults take place on G.A.A. fields with no thought for the consequences.
[Source: The Mayo News]

MEATH

Almost 11 percent of Meath's population are non-Irish nationals, according to figures released from the Central Statistics Office (C.S.O.).

The figures show that 19,802 non-Irish nationals were living in Meath at the time of the Census in April 2011, accounting for 10.8 percent of people living in the county.

Of this, 3,867 were Polish nationals – the largest non-Irish nationality in the county, followed by 3,638 U.K. nationals.
[Source: Meath Chronicle]

MONAGHAN

Two men have been arrested in connection with the discovery of an oil laundering plant in County Monaghan.

Officers from Revenue’s Customs service along with Gardaí (police) found the facility at a commercial premise in Aghafad, Killanny in Carrickmacross.

It had the capacity to launder 4 million gallons of fuel a year and would have cost the State up to $10 million in lost revenue.
[Source: RTÉ News]

OFFALY

A number of Offalians who visited the recent National Ploughing Championships at New Ross availed of free diabetes screening.

The Lions Clubs of New Ross, Wexford, Waterford, Carrick-On-Suir, Clonmel and Enniscorthy provided the screening, with New Ross Lions being the coordinators.

New Ross Lions Club President Jim Collins said, “New Ross were delighted to carry on this great service provided by the Lions club for the last 10 years. Registered nurses have signed up as we screened 4,757 people during the three-day event.”
[Source: Offaly Express]

ROSCOMMON

A young mother who was followed for 15 minutes by a man in the Demesne area of Castlerea on Sunday, September 30 has appealed to other women in the area to be vigilant.

The woman, who had her young child with her, told the Herald that she was “extremely intimidated” by the man and had to call her own mother to come and meet her after she spotted him staring at her from bushes.

The Castlerea woman said that it was the man’s demeanor, which initially sparked fear in her.

“I was pushing my daughter in the pram when I noticed a man walking towards me, who was staring strangely at me. Seconds after he passed by me, I glanced around and saw that he was then following me, walking just a few feet behind me. I quickened by pace and so did he. Moments later he walked by me, heading in the direction of the Demesne, but when I walked on further, I saw him looking out at me from the bushes,” she explained.
[Source: Roscommon Herald]

SLIGO

Margaret Madden (58), a B&B owner at Lough Gara House in Monasteraden, is suing three men for the loss of her husband and her own shock, pain and distress.

Terence Madden (52) bled to death after being shot in both legs at close range on January 28, 1999.

Michael Doohan, a former member of the Defence Forces, and formerly of Ashbury Lawns, Ballinode, County Sligo, Joseph Herron, formerly of Chapel Street, Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal, and Patrick McGrath, formerly of Cuilpruglish, Gurteen, Co. Sligo, received life sentences at the Special Criminal Court in 2000 for their part in the murder.
[Source: RTÉ News]

TIPPERARY

Doctor Rosemarie Carew, from Drombane, has become the first Irish person to win the prestigious F.E.B.S. Journal Prize for Young Scientists, with a cash prize of $13,000.

A past pupil of the Ursuline Secondary School, Thurles, Dr. Carew was recognised by F.E.B.S. (Federation of European Biochemical Societies) for being the first author of a paper judged to be the best by a graduate student or young post-doctoral research worker published in F.E.B.S Journal 2011.

Carew (29) was awarded her prize in Seville, Spain where she attended a plenary F.E.B.S. ceremony and gave a 20-minute presentation on her work.
[Source: Tipperary Star]

TYRONE

Coalisland traders have pledged to "stand up and fight for their town" as they bid to revive its reputation as a key shopping destination in Tyrone.

The hard-pressed traders made the commitment at a meeting in the town's Corn Mill last Thursday evening, September 27 to re-launch the Traders' Association where they learned that approximately $195,000 has already been earmarked for the town.

However, despite this much-needed cash injection, concerns were still voiced among some traders who suggested that Coalisland was being "neglected" and "run into the ground."
[Source: Tyrone Courier]

WATERFORD

City Square has fully reopened following a fire at the plant room of Dunnes Stores last Monday, which saw all staff and customers evacuated from the shopping center.

The fire started at the plant room on the roof of Dunnes Stores, which contains heating and ventilation; units of Waterford Fire Service, backed up by units from Tramore and Dunmore, brought the fire under control.
[Source: Waterford News & Star]

WESTMEATH

Horseleap residents Sinead O'Neill and her boyfriend Paddy Barrett got the shock of their lives two weeks ago when they discovered they were sharing their home with an unwanted guest – a six-foot boa constrictor.

The young couple, who moved into the rented house four months ago, discovered the snake when they were about to start cleaning out their shed.
[Source: Westmeath Independent]

WEXFORD

A group of Wexford fishermen at sea for the previous five days had said last Thursday that the fishermen will no longer abide by E.U. regulations to dump fish back into the ocean if they go over quota.

The crew, which harbored last Wednesday night, was watched over by a member of An Garda (Police) Siochana at Kilmore Quay before representatives from the Sea Fisheries Protection Authority arrived last Thursday morning to investigate the situation.
[Source: Wexford Echo]

WICKLOW

Ali Coghlan (29), from Wicklow, started her online party supply site www.harryali.com, named after her toddler Harry, after she was made redundant from her job in television production earlier this year. She says: "I really do feel my redundancy was meant to be.

"I'd always wanted to work for myself and when I was left out of work in March, I figured 'well, this is the time to do it!'

"The idea came from an experience last year when I'd planned a party for my son Harry (2).

"I wanted to do party bags for everyone but it took ages running round all the shops getting stuff to put in them. Moms and dads who are working full time just don't have the time to do that, so I set up a company that delivers the whole party kit complete to their front door.”
[Source: Irish Independent]

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