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 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick

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PostSubject: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 7:07 pm

In one of the biggest Garda operations ever mounted in Limerick, 250 Gardaí have been deployed to search for and seize evidence. Business premises and private dwellings are being hit as I type and the operation may last well into tomorrow. Guns, drugs, cash and documentation have been confiscated thus far. There have also been three arrests made up to this point. It is known that both solicitors' and accountants' firms have also been included in the operation.

Thanks to the good folks at the award winning Limerick Blogger for the heads up: Limerick Blogger

Direct Link to the ongoing story as it happens: Here
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 7:27 pm

I always said Dermot Ahern was wasted in Foreign Affairs.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 7:44 pm

Hermes wrote:
In one of the biggest Garda operations ever mounted in Limerick, 250 Gardaí have been deployed to search for and seize evidence. Business premises and private dwellings are being hit as I type and the operation may last well into tomorrow. Guns, drugs, cash and documentation have been confiscated thus far. There have also been three arrests made up to this point. It is known that both solicitors' and accountants' firms have also been included in the operation.

Thanks to the good folks at the award winning Limerick Blogger for the heads up: Limerick Blogger

Direct Link to the ongoing story as it happens: Here

That a great blog. All that and potted fruit too. Good luck to Limerick I hope it means a real change for them. So far 2 firearms and €300,000 worth of stuff would not rock the Limerick crime world, but its sounds like the operation is still going on.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 8:23 pm

I'm a big fan of the Limerick Blogger. Squid, eventhough he's no longer the owner has created something very special. It's a great site to get info from people on the ground when stuff's going down in Limerick.

This Garda operation surprised me. It's a huge effort, and they managed to keep it under wraps. Not a single shot needed or fired either.

I'd not worry too much about the lack of guns seized etc. Most folks who have access, wouldn't keep them in their homes. Documentation is what's important here, and particularly the fact that the offices of solicitors and accountants were hit also.

The Armed Response Unit has been camped out in Limerick now for well over a month and if anything, violence escalated. To me this was the thugs openly defying the Gardaí and overtly marking territory. IMO today's action is a stunning victory for the old fashioned method of policing and more of the same will make Limerick a safe place to exist and indeed a pleasure to be in. Being from Limerick, I'm probably prejudiced in this respect, but Limerick is one of my favourite places on the planet.

It's not all sunshine and happiness though. When this operation (operation Platinum) winds up, there should be plenty of Garda resources on the ground in the various areas as scumbags switch into scared mode and attempt to off each other in large numbers. There are lots of variables at play here and to fail to recognise them could prove disasterous. The Gardaí have asserted authority and must be vigilant with regard to the scumbags taking it back. In Limerick, the people have become accustomed to single action failures perpetrated by various bodies in an attempt to be seen to be doing something. To suggest that folks are wary is a vast understatement. Thus far though, the mood in general seems to suggest that folks are impressed.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 9:53 pm

905 wrote:
I always said Dermot Ahern was wasted in Foreign Affairs.

Is this under his imprimatur? If so, fair play Dermot.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 9:59 pm

Limerick is a beautiful and exciting city. It is also perhaps the most socially divided city in Ireland. I did a job there about four years ago. The middle class "mover and shaker" citizens who want to drive the city forward seem to think if they completely ignore the disadvantaged areas they will just go away. Limerick is in too much trouble to be able to get out of it with a couple of pedestrianised streets, a new hotel and a PR video saying "I like Limerick".

Has that changed at all Hermes?
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Thu May 08, 2008 10:32 pm

CF wrote:
Limerick is a beautiful and exciting city. It is also perhaps the most
socially divided city in Ireland. I did a job there about four years
ago. The middle class "mover and shaker" citizens who want to drive the
city forward seem to think if they completely ignore the disadvantaged
areas they will just go away. Limerick is in too much trouble to be
able to get out of it with a couple of pedestrianised streets, a new
hotel and a PR video saying "I like Limerick".

Has that changed at all Hermes?

To be honest, nothing has changed (for the better). I don't live there any more but still get back fairly regularly. I grew up in Moyross and Ballynanty and am familar with the 'trouble spots.' Most of the kids I went to school with are either dead or are career criminals, and I do mean the majority. They've between them, committed each and every crime I can think of and probably many more. When we were all in school, there were some wild ones (myself included), but nothing pointed to where we are today. Today, I see their kids and I see plenty of indicators of truly difficult times ahead. I'm neither a believer in pessimism nor optimism. I think I'm not alone in the way I think in this regard, that's what living in parts of Limerick instils in our kids: there is but now and there are but results to our actions. The cheapening of life is a boot strapping mechanism. The pervasive view interacts with the pervasive acts that cheapen life and accelerate each other. This mechanism is beyond freefall and will take a gargantuan effort to arrest this, never mind what's required to reverse it.

Tis all very well to heap praises on politicians etc. for today's effort. That's a large part of the problem. This act is now seen as an accomplishment and that's what it'll be touted as come the next election or whatever. This act on it's own is quite meaningless and we'll have to wait and see (in the long term) if anything comes of it. So far, the mood in Limerick is cautiously hopeful. I don't hold that belief. I've watched the backslapping mechanisms of Irish life too many times to be fooled once more.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 12:08 am

Hmm.

It's a great move by the Gardaí - and I'm delighted to see that the solicitors and accountants are being targetted. It's about time for them.

How come you're different Hermes? You came from the same area as classmates who are dead or on drugs so it's not just the place that makes the person, is it?
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 12:42 am

I am posting most of a question to the Dail by the late, great Jim Kenny in 1992. It is hard to read the whole exchange without getting quite angry.

It was good to have Mr. Flynn respond that 4 trainee Gards had been allocated to the area.

Link to Dail Report

Dáil Éireann - Volume 417 - 11 March, 1992

Adjournment Debate. - Moyross (Limerick) Vandalism.

Mr. Kemmy: Thank you, Sir, for affording me the opportunity of raising [660] this matter in the House. I am also grateful to the Minister for taking time to come to deal with this matter.

I do not raise this matter lightly. As well as being a Member of this House, I am also Mayor of Limerick and it was after some soul-searching that I as first citizen of the city, decided to raise this matter on the floor of Dáil Éireann. It is a measure of my frustration as first citizen that I have been forced to raise the matter in this drastic way.

This matter has been on my conscience since I became Mayor of Limerick eight months ago. As a person who is concerned about housing working people in my native city I felt bad that I was unable to relet houses in Glenagross Park, Moyross. This weighed heavily on me and I regard it as an indictment of myself, my fellow councillors and my city that we have not been able to tackle this matter.

Moyross is the largest housing estate in Limerick and is situated on the north side of the city. There are more than 1,200 houses in the estate. There are 294 houses in the Glenagross Park section of which 70 are boarded up. These houses were built approximately 15 years ago and they would cost between £35,000 to £40,000 each on the open market. This is an area of very high unemployment with about 80 per cent being unemployed and the percentage is even higher among early school leavers. Glue sniffing is rampant. The young boys who sniff glue have low self-esteem and little self-confidence. They also drink wine and cider in the area.

Approximately 70 houses have been vandalised in the area. Some have been burned out and it is like a sight from Beirut. The estate is situated in a lovely part of Limerick, in the shadow of the Clare hills, a very salubrious area bordering County Clare.

661

More than 100 families have been intimidated into leaving their houses. A small group of young people who are usually high from glue-sniffing and the effects of intoxicating drink call on the occupied houses at 2 or 3 o'clock in the morning. People have been forced to leave, especially women on their own [661] with young children. In their efforts to stabilise the area, Limerick Corporation have decided that those who leave that estate will not be rehoused by the corporation and are put on the housing list. There are now more than 500 applicants on the housing list yet, more than 100 houses, including the 70 in Glenagross Park, are boarded up because they were vandalised. This is a dreadful situation.

The estate has been the subject of a number of press articles and television programmes. The former Minister for Justice, Deputy Burke, came to see me after one such television programme. The Minister was shocked by what he saw on television and asked for my advice on the matter. I told him that it would be necessary to have a Garda presence on a 24 hour basis in the estate to discourage the young vandals and guarantee people that they could live in those houses free from intimidation and with security of tenure.

The city council and the corporation support me fully. The previous Minister said he would visit on two occasions to see the situation for himself and I now extend the same invitation to the Minister and I undertake to escort him. I appeal to the Minister to use his good offices and influence with the Garda Síochána, who say they have not the resources, to give us 24 hour protection in that estate so that we can relet the houses.

There has been a dreadful rat infestation in the area, it is the worst I have ever seen. It has to be seen to be believed. The rats have congregated in the boarded up houses and this is causing great distress to the families in the area. I would greatly appreciate if the Minister helped us resolve this problem.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 1:53 am

Kate P wrote:
Hmm.

It's a great move by the Gardaí - and I'm delighted to
see that the solicitors and accountants are being targetted. It's about
time for them.

How come you're different Hermes? You came
from the same area as classmates who are dead or on drugs so it's not
just the place that makes the person, is it?

I wish I could say that it was a matter of being brilliant, but I'd be lying if I did. The truth is that I've seen young kids with a much greater potential than I had, slide down the slippery pit. Many folks will say that most of the problems in Limerick and places like it are down to bad parenting, bad company and what have you. Whilst these issues are most certainly variables in the problem, that's all that they are - variables. The real problem is probability. And that's the answer as to why I'm different - I was lucky. Limerick's like a fire, not everyone's going to get burned to death. Today's action by the Gardaí was an excellent one, but they did not put out the fire, not by a long shot. Besides, putting out the fire is only one side of the coin: we also need to rebuild.

Jim Kemmy was a great politician and a very decent man. I met him quite a few times and found him to be a great conversationalist with an ability to intuitively grasp the mechanics of any particular subject. He was never a guy to shy away from the truth or the telling of it (especially if he disagreed with you Very Happy ). I didn't understand or appreciate him at the time to the degree I do now. That's always the way with the non-self-promoters I suppose. Another thing I liked about him was his willingness to concentrate on small issues and see if the knock-on effect could produce something worthwhile - rolling snowballs downhill if you will.

There's a great potential in all of us, circumstance can unleash it. We may not be able to control potential but we most assuredly control circumstance. And we must do a whole lot better.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 11:59 am

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
905 wrote:
I always said Dermot Ahern was wasted in Foreign Affairs.

Is this under his imprimatur? If so, fair play Dermot.
Well I doubt it, but I can't see Lenihen getting the kudos for it!
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 12:30 pm

Hopefully this will make it more and more difficult for the criminals to move and benefit from their money. At least if they know they are being watched then they will have to skulk instead of strutting.

I am very fond of Limerick. There is great community and pride in the City and the people are very open and welcoming. I would agree that it is divided as I have only ever seen one side of it. The older generation go apoplectic in reaction to criticism of Limerick. It is a tradition that has been passed on to quite a few. It is this blinkered view which has allowed matters to deteriorate in the bad areas. Effectively they are viewed as a separate country.

Most affluent people in the Limerick have little or no contact with the disadvantaged people. I have been in the city many times and apart from a few 'ruffians' around the streets, which is standard fare, you see nothing amiss. As far as I can see the City has not yet pulled together to confront the problems and the disadvantaged have been left to stew. An PR effort to publicise the plight of the deprived is what is called for to pull people together but unfortunately bad PR is the one thing that well to do Limerick people resist at every level. It's a vicious circle.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 12:43 pm

Kate P wrote:
and I'm delighted to see that the solicitors...are being targetted. It's about time for them.

Weezle the b*st*rds out... open up the market for those of us finding it difficult to secure future traineeships What a Face
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 12:51 pm

There will be nobody cheering harder for them to be caught than the decent accountants and solicitors who act with integrity and honour. The economic mechanics of the country are greased by the trust people have in professionals. When that erodes life becomes more difficult for client and professional alike, transaction costs increase, loyalty is degraded in both directions and the personal pleasure goes out of much of people's work.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 2:46 pm

Zhou_Enlai wrote:
There will be nobody cheering harder for them to be caught than the decent accountants and solicitors who act with integrity and honour. The economic mechanics of the country are greased by the trust people have in professionals. When that erodes life becomes more difficult for client and professional alike, transaction costs increase, loyalty is degraded in both directions and the personal pleasure goes out of much of people's work.

That's very true. As Joe MacAnthony has said, all the corruption in Ireland is greased and facilitated by rotten eggs from within the legal and accountacny professions - and yet they never end up in the frame for it.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 3:05 pm

To be honest I have a feeling that this more of a pr exercise to show that they are tough on crime and doing something to stamp it out etc

As for raiding solicitors and accountants that is normal practice in terms of trying to build cases re the CAB against individuals, not the solicitors and accountants. It doesnt imply anything negative whatsoever about them
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Fri May 09, 2008 7:44 pm

905 wrote:
Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
905 wrote:
I always said Dermot Ahern was wasted in Foreign Affairs.

Is this under his imprimatur? If so, fair play Dermot.
Well I doubt it, but I can't see Lenihen getting the kudos for it!

Nope, I'd imagine Brian Lenihan was working with the Gardaí fairly closely, but some people wouldn't recognise that.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Sat May 10, 2008 6:36 pm

Two more updates from the Limerick Blogger on this story:

Gardaí secure orders to hold on to Operation Platinum cash:- LINK

Social Welfare payments stopped after CAB operation :- LINK
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Sat May 10, 2008 7:20 pm

There is a good report on page 2 of today's IT on a study of a group of young men in Limerick. 18 men aged 18-30 were interviewed. "Those interviewed were found to be lacking in self-esteem and suffering severe disaffection, despite many having been the victims of crime and intimidation, which included the murder of family members, but all but two wanted to stay in the area...All but two had left school at an early age. Several said they had liked primary school but hated secondary school (some were described as having learning difficulties)...Almost all said they had encountered discrimination because of where they lived and even those who had got an education at secondary level could not get a decent job. The men who were fathers wanted to work for the money and standing. One said "When my kids are asked 'what does your father do' I would like them to be able to say that I do something".

Several said they could not walk to the shops for fear of attack, were hassled in dole queues and and would not say hello to someone in the street in case they were involved in a gang. All of them wanted to see more Gardai in their community.

The study recommended early school intervention, community policing and bereavement counselling.

The study was by Pat O'Connor, professor of sociology at UL with consultants Patricia and Carmel Kelleher. It will be submitted to the Limerick Regeneration Agencies.

Spectacular one-off raids on their own don't seem likely to change the lives of these ordinary inhabitants of Limerick.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Sat May 10, 2008 7:59 pm

Quote :
Spectacular one-off raids on their own don't seem likely to change the lives of these ordinary inhabitants of Limerick.


It will if it helps to deal with those who give the young men in that study a bad name.

I would go so far as to say that all decent sized towns have a gang culture of their own - that intimidates, exploits and then prevents witnesses giving evidence in court cases - even in district courts.

Early school intervention has been requested all over the country for years and is consistently denied or underfunded or unavailable. While things have improved considerably there is a scandalous lack still of resources for students with specific learning difficulties - NEPS is wildly underresourced and understaffed. Until that is improved, the educational prospects don't look like getting much brighter.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Sat May 10, 2008 8:35 pm

Kate P wrote:
Quote :
Spectacular one-off raids on their own don't seem likely to change the lives of these ordinary inhabitants of Limerick.


It will if it helps to deal with those who give the young men in that study a bad name.

I would go so far as to say that all decent sized towns have a gang culture of their own - that intimidates, exploits and then prevents witnesses giving evidence in court cases - even in district courts.

Early school intervention has been requested all over the country for years and is consistently denied or underfunded or unavailable. While things have improved considerably there is a scandalous lack still of resources for students with specific learning difficulties - NEPS is wildly underresourced and understaffed. Until that is improved, the educational prospects don't look like getting much brighter.

I agree about resources Kate, but I think the people who give these young men a bad name are "ordinary decent citizens" who make assumptions that all young men are the same, and that if 1 person offends in an estate, no one else from the estate is to be trusted. People regularly have to lie about their address to get a job interview and it ingrains and perpetuates a cycle. If they were treated with normal respect ( and had normal on-street Gardai presence), that would go a long way to solving things.
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PostSubject: Re: 250 Gardaí Raid Limerick   Sat May 10, 2008 8:38 pm

Ah. We're back to the 'scumbag' argument again. Well, you know where I stand on that one.

Your point is well made, cf and certainly the stereotyping doesn't help.
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