That was Gerry Adams talking about Slab Murphy back in 2006. Last week Gerry was singing from a slightly different hymnbook…
“Last Friday Sinn Féin Councillors Edel Corrigan and Jim Loughran, and I met senior Garda for North Louth in Dundalk. The meeting discussed a range of matters including fuel laundering by criminal gangs in the north Louth area. We had also met the PSNI several months ago and raised the same issue with them.
Fuel laundering costs both states tens of millions each year but it also leaves behind a toxic sludge which presents a significant environmental threat to people living in the area.
While I welcome today’s action by the Garda, PSNI and Revenue and Customs bodies there is a widespread public concern, which I share, at the lack of convictions that have occurred arising from the discovery of fuel laundering plants in the past.”
No names at that stage, so no pack drill, eh Gerry? A concern shared by the MP for North Antrim..
Ian Paisley has called for an inquiry into why, despite 19 separate raids across 10 Irish counties yesterday, no one is being questioned.
PSNI and Garda cooperated in dawn raids at about 20 addresses in the Republic and three in Crossmaglen.
The DUP MP for North Antrim said: “For there to have been not one single arrest is a complete embarrassment.”
It’s not the only case in which Mr Murphy has endured the attention of the authorities:
A separate case against Murphy, who denies any Provo role, is due to be mentioned at the non-jury Special Criminal Court in Dublin this month. He faces nine allegations of failing to file income tax returns from 1996 to 2004.
Murphy is taking a Supreme Court case in an effort to have the case against him heard before a jury. Yesterday’s operations also focused on two associates. It is understood that CAB investigators have uncovered several bank accounts in bogus names as a result of the inquiry.
“This investigation has been ongoing for several years,” said one source. “It is just like a jigsaw and the final pieces in that puzzle are now being put in place.”
We make that seven years. And the cops think he’s still up to something?
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty