Ethan Leahy was hoping for a tasty snack from his local KFC takeaway. But the 12-year-old boy got a nasty surprise when he found two mystery pills inside a soft drink bottle that came free with his meal. The Antrim schoolboy fell ill after finding the colored capsules in a two-litre bottle of Diet Coke that his mother got as part of a family-sized takeaway from KFC. One of the pills had partially dissolved in the schoolboy’s drink, leaving the other tablet floating in the bottle. A spokeswoman for the branch said she did not want to comment on the incident.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


A man accused of killing a dairy farmer in County Armagh has been refused bail because of fears he may not turn up for trial.Peter Joseph Moloney is charged with murdering 45-year-old Victor Stewart in October 2008. The victim was found beaten to death at his isolated farmhouse on the Creevekeeran Road, Middletown.Mr Moloney, 23, of Drumarg Park, Armagh, is also accused of stealing a safe from the victim's farmhouse.
(Source: BBC News Northern Ireland)


A local man allegedly caught “red-handed” on a back road with over half a million euro worth of drugs appeared before a sitting of Carlow District Court last week. Armed detectives arrested John Brady of 110 Riverview Close, Hanover, Carlow last Monday, 7 February. Brady was charged in court with possessing drugs for sale or supply at Croghtan, Clogh, Castlecomer.  He was arrested with another man, Sean Keohane, whose address was given as 10B Queen Street, Warrenpoint, Co Down.
(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


Thieves who burgled 17 houses – all occupied at the time – in Virginia recently were so brazen they even released two dogs from one of the homes. The Alsatian and the terrier were found wandering in the town area the following day. The robbers, believed to be part of a professional gang from Dublin took laptops, mobile phones, money, jewellery and car keys, in two waves: the first eight robberies were in the early hours of last Saturday on the Ballyjamesduff side of the town and another nine houses on the Kells side were targeted early on Sunday morning February 5.
(Source: The Angle Celt)


Shannon Airport needs to be managed locally if it is to survive according to the majority of candidates at last Monday night’s election debate. Sitting TD Joe Carey said the DAA is “sucking the life out of Shannon” and that he had a clear vision for the future of Shannon Airport and is eager to see this put in place. “It is clear that the governance structure has failed in Shannon. We are always on the backfoot. Even the name DAA is wrong. The Dublin Airport Authority running Shannon, it is wrong. Dublin is sucking life out of Shannon and it has to stop

(Source: The Clare Champion)


Cork is home to over 26,000 illegally ‘clocked’ vehicles according to the latest statistics from car history check website, The figures represent the number of vehicles that have had their odometers altered in order to read that less mileage has bee amassed on the vehicle, thereby making it more attractive to potential buyers. Hugh Sheehy, of Cavanaghs Charleville, told the Cork Independent that the assumption within the business is that one out of every five imported cars, mostly from the United Kingdom, are clocked and this is something he would broadly agree with.
Source: (Cork Independent)


Dissident republicans who left a pipe-bomb outside a house could have killed people, it has been claimed. The device, which police described as viable, was found in the Sandy Braes area of Magherafelt last week. Nearby homes were evacuated while the device was dealt with by Army bomb experts. It is believed the Real IRA was behind the attack.  Mid-Ulster DUP MLA Ian McCrea, who is a Policing Board member, attended the scene and voiced his disgust at those responsible. “This device could have resulted in the loss of innocent life if detonated by a child or a passer-by and I am utterly disgusted by this mindless action,” he said.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


Thirteen young people booked their tickets to leave Donegal within the space of fourteen hours this week, according to Killybegs travel agent Mona Vial.The unprecedented numbers of young people who are leaving the country has shocked the Killybegs travel agent who has been exceptionally vocal on such issues in the past. To date it is estimated that 43 young local people have booked their ticket to leave Ireland since the beginning of January.
(Source: Donegal Democrat)


A church badly damaged in a dissident republican bombing in Northern Ireland a year ago will officially reopened last Sunday. Downshire Road Presbyterian in Newry, Co Down, suffered structural damage and had most of its windows blown out in the blast outside the border city's nearby courthouse on February 22 last year. A car bomb weighing up to 250lb exploded. No-one was killed or injured in the attack, which was heard two miles away. Part of an annex to the church was demolished and rebuilt while stained glass windows were painstakingly reconstructed, minister the Rev Brian Colvin said.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)

Detectives across Dublin are reporting a major rise in home burglaries and mobile phone muggings. The first six weeks of the year have seen a surge of break-ins in homes in the city suburbs. In the city centre, officers have also seen an increase in the street theft of mobile phones – particularly iPhones. The smartphones – worth up to €600 – are being fenced for just €40, the price of a deal of heroin. Worryingly, the number of assaults on householders in the course of burglaries has also risen. Gardai (police) have noticed an increase in daytime break-ins particularly in the afternoons and school pick-up time.
(Source: The Evening Hearld)


Colin Howell was accused of being a “monster” who murdered his wife simply for money. Howell is said to have benefited from his wife’s death to the tune of several hundred thousand pounds.  Defense lawyer Paul Ramsey pushed the idea that Mr Howell committed the murders for financial gain. “You’re wrong about that, my motive was not the money,” Howell said in response. He told Coleraine Crown Court the realization he had been duped at the end of 2008 was the trigger which led to him confessing. “I made a decision in that moment that I wanted to confess to those murders,” he said.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


The vendors of a picturesque five-bed country cottage and guest lodge in the North Galway village of Kilconly have come up with a novel idea to boost interest – a secondhand top-of-the-range Jaguar car is included in the sale. The automatic 2003-registered 3.0 litre S-Type includes an all-leather interior with a current NCT and tax. Nettlehill Cottage and Lodge – set on an “immaculately maintained” one-acre site – have been on the market for just over a year, and have had the price cut by €125,000.
(Source: GalwayBay Fm)


Fexco has refused to comment on rumours that it plans to let go 60 staff from its centre in Cahersiveen, Co. Kerry. Radio Kerry News has learned that job losses from the financial services company will take effect from next April and May. The company, which has its headquarters in Killorglin, employs around 800 people in Kerry. Fexco is one of the county's largest employers and since its establishment 30 years ago, has become a global player in the financial services industry.


Three men from the Athy area were arrested in the continuing investigation into the arson attack on the home of a detective garda (police) in the area. The three men, one of whom is believed to be in his 30s and the two others who are in their 20s, were questioned and released without charge in the ongoing investigation into the arson attack at the home of Detective Leon Kenny. Detective Kenny is based in Athy. Meanwhile it is believed that at least three Athy based gardai have received death threats. When asked about this Superintendent Kavanagh said that he had no comment to make ‘for operational reasons’.

(Source: The Kildare Nationalist)


A hammer wielding man covered in dried blood was tackled by two plain clothes Gardai (police) after threatening diners in Supermacs on high street in Kilkenny. The 18 year-old male was arrested and charged with public disorder after he stole a claw hammer from the €2store and proceeded up the street to Supermacs where he engaged in threatening behaviour towards patrons. The Gardai (police) were called at 5 o’clock on Thursday 9th of February. An unmarked car rushed to the scene swiftly followed by a patrol car. The two undercover Gardai subdued and arrested the intoxicated man and took him to Kilkenny Garda station where he was held overnight.
(Source: Kilkenny People)


A €30 carbon monoxide alarm would have prevented the death of a man killed while trying to fix a wood pellet burner, according to a family solicitor. Colm MacGeehin made the comment following an inquest into the death of Declan Murphy, Limetree Lodge, Portarlington, Co Laois. Mr Murphy was trying to fix a fault with a wood pellet burner in his shed when he was overcome by fumes on November 25th, 2010.
(Source: Irish Times)


2009 Flood victim Carrick Cineplex has come out on top by being awarded the Best Independent Irish Cinema this year. 2009 Flood victim Carrick Cineplex has come out on top by being awarded the Best Independent Irish Cinema this year. In an unprecedented move, RAAM Management, an International Cinema consultancy firm, based in Glasgow, engaged at the forefront of the Cinema industry development worldwide, has selected Carrick cinema for the second time as the recipient of the prestigious Best Independent Irish Cinema Award.
(Source: Leitrim Observer)


A Prospect man was remanded in custody last Friday morning after he appeared in court charged in connection with the hi-jacking of a taxi in the city last weekend. Mark Ryan, 24, of Lenihan Avenue, Prospect is accused of hijacking the taxi and robbing the taxi driver at Talbot Avenue, Prospect on the February 12 last. Limerick District Court was told he was arrested last Saturday morning and that he was formally charged last Wednesday night.
(Source: Limerick Leader)


The number of Longford emigrants flocking to British shores continues apace and many of these new Londoners attended the Longford Association Dinner Dance in Longford last week. Attracta Minnock is a case in point. Frustrated by the financial upheavals facing the local and wider economy, she opted to try her arm at the UK market with nursing her chosen profession. “I filled out my CAO (Central Applications Office) form and got an interview with Thames Valley University,” she explained as last Friday night’s entertainment prepared to get under way.
(Source: Longford Leader)


Ardee business people met last Wednesday with county and national tourism chiefs to see how Ardee and mid-Louth can be made a major part of a new tourism drive for the region. The Louth Tourism and Heritage Action Group will launch its action plan for 2011 and beyond, in Darver Castle, and later members of Ardee Traders and Business Association will meet the tourism leaders in Ardee to see how Ardee can become part of the Bru na Boinne tourism route.
(Source: Dundalk Democrat)


The issue of turf cutting and the impact of Special Areas of Conservation on everyday life in parts of Mayo looks like it will be a major issue in the run-in to the General Election following a public meeting in Westport last Sunday February 13. There was standing room only in the Castlecourt Hotel with close to 500 estimated to have attended the meeting which was hosted by the Turf Cutters and Contractors Association (TCCA). The primary concern was the future of turf cutting in the county.
(Source: The Mayo News)


The appalling state of many rural roads around Meath, left riddled with potholes and falling apart in the wake of the December cold snap and heavy rain in recent weeks, has been highlighted by public representatives and residents throughout the county.Long stretches of secondary roads are dangerous and some almost unusable because of the huge volume of potholes created by the recent bad winter.
(Source: The Meath Chronicle)


The commercial court has heard how a Co Monaghan shopkeeper borrowed almost €32m from a major Swiss bank to fund a first-time development, but has yet to repay the loan after over three years. Jim McConnan, of Main Street in Castleblayney, borrowed €31.8m from Zurich Bank in June of 2007, in order to fund the construction of a shopping centre in the Monaghan town. McConnon’s counsel, Ross Maguire, said his client’s position was “hopeless” and that he had made it clear last year he would have no chance of paying off his debts.


Extensive refurbishment work on Tullamore library is expected to commence in May and will include the long-awaited re-opening of the old bridge linking the rear of O’Connor Square and Church Street. County Librarian Ms Mary Stuart presented a comprehensive report on the Library Development Plan to the February meeting of Tullamore Town Council last week. The library serivce is also at present undertaking a review of opening hours and staff resources in an effort to find the optimum opening times to suit customers. Ms Stuart pointed out that although the library’s book fund had been cut by 50% the number of visits to libraries had increased by 16%,
(Source: Offaly Express)


The collapse of the property market has left a legacy of more than 1,000 ghost houses throughout County Roscommon, according to a survey carried out by the Department of Environment. The survey inspected around 179,000 units in 2,800 developments across the country between May-September last year and found that just 15 percent of these developments were active.
(Source: The Roscommon Herald)


Up to 150 students nurses and supporters took part in a lunchtime protest against pay cuts last Wednesday outside Sligo General Hospital last Tuesday. Last Wednesday, representatives from Sligo travelled to Dublin for a national rally and protest march. Last week’s demonstration in Sligo was one of 13 at hospitals around the country.
(Source: The Sligo Weekender)


A Tipperary teenager who was violently sexually assaulted has said in her victim impact statement that she has since tried to kill herself “many times and in many ways”.Her attacker, Noel Holland (37) of Clarke’s Flats, Main Street, Templemore, was sentenced to eight years by Mr Justice Paul Carney at the Central Criminal Court last week after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting the then 18-year-old at his home on February 1st, 2009.
(Source: Irish Times)


A 21-year-old Co Tyrone man due to go on trial for the manslaughter of Cookstown man Leslie Parks in September 2009 has pleaded guilty to his unlawful killing. Anthony James Bey punched Mr Parks once near the Clubland nightclub in Molesworth Street, Cookstown. Mr Parks, felled by the single punch, fractured his skull and died at the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast on September 28, 2009.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


One of the miracles of the Cork Air tragedy has been recuperating at home following his brush with death recently. 22-year-old Donal Walsh from The Grange in Waterford had to be cut from the wreckage of the Manx2 light aircraft but astonishingly he was able to walk unaided from the plane to a nearby ambulance.
(Source: Waterford News $ Star)


An advance party of troops is expected to deploy to Lebanon in April, with the main body of troops due to travel in May, the Westmeath Independent can reveal this week. An advance party of 90 engineering personnel will leave Ireland in April to travel to the Middle Eastern country to establish the camp, which will be located in the Tibnin area, a region familiar to Irish soldiers. It is expected the main body of troops will then follow in two groups, or chalks, the first in the middle of May and the second group at the end of May.
(Source: Westmeath Independent)


A man in his 20s has been arrested over dissident republican activity. He was detained in a raid on a house in Barntown, Co Wexford after bomb making parts were discovered. Gardaí (police) said the components could have used for improvised explosive devices, possibly pipe bombs. The raid, by members of the Special Detective Unit and local officers in Wexford, took place at 8am last Friday.
(Source: The Irish Times)


A Jack Russell pup owes his life to his quick-thinking Co Wicklow owner who gave him the kiss of life after he fell into a pond. “I was looking for a home for him but now he’s part of the family – I’m tied to him,” said owner John Greene following the “mouth-to-snout” rescue of eight-week-old Nutty.And this shaggy dog story has an added animal element – the alarm was raised when Mr Greene heard the nine chickens he keeps in his backyard making a commotion in their coop.
(Source: The Irish Times)