“Are people certain the proceeds from the organised crime is not finding its way into the [SF] political project?”

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Micheal Martin took his second pot shot of the week at Sinn Fein in Leader’s Questions in Dail Eireann in as many days. But this was a more forensic strike than yesterday‘s more on-the-hoof affair.

He starts with a reference to £28 Million raised by the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) from individuals with “connections or associations” with the Provisional IRA, and then from here asks…

Are people absolutely certain Taoiseach that any of the proceeds from the organised crime that’s been going on by alleged individual Provo Republicans is not finding its way into the political project.. I don’t say that lightly… [Noises off from SF benches]

I would refer you Taoiseach to the proceeds of the Northern Ireland Bank robbery. And I would refer the members to my right [Sinn Fein deputies], check the courts in 2010. Check the three members who were prosecuted and found guilty in relation to handling the proceeds of the Northern Ireland Bank robbery.

One was an unsuccessful candidate for Sinn Fein. The other was a fund raiser for Sinn Fein. And the third in the court pleaded guilty and described himself as a Republican and Sinn Fein member. So there’s form, is my point. People mightn’t like what I’m saying, but that happened taoiseach, and we cannot turn a blind eye to this.

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  • willieric

    OUCH! However, before the mud is thrown in one direction only, let us never forget how many previous administrations and individuals provided succour and sustenance to terrorists during the past 50 years.

  • John

    Look at the state of those shiners in the corner laughing and shouting abuse whenever challenged. Absolutely pathetic. Hopefully the people of the south are gradually seeing what we in the north have been forced to accept and what they will have to put up with if these chumps get voted in.

  • Redstar

    Free State parties ( the kings of fat envelope deals) complaining about financial improprieties !!! You could t make it up

  • Surveyor

    I don’t know Mick you tell us. Or does conjecture now pass for serious debate on Slugger these days?

  • Ernekid

    Instead of constantly trying to sling mud at Sinn Fein why doesn’t Martin try to come with some policies that’ll make his party relevant to the Irish electorate?

  • mickfealty

    ‘Twas a question to the Taoiseach sir..

  • chrisjones2

    Yes…like not being involved in crime and not having his party controlled by a secret cabal who direct its members and some of whom are linked or organised crime and are members of illegal organisations

    That might be a good start

  • submariner

    I take it you are referring to the DUP and UUP

  • hugh mccloy

    Michael Martin has come out very strong and came across very confident recently, as far as party leaders go he is outperforming everyone.

  • Ian Rate

    John I watched the debate live and in its entirety.
    Compared to PMQs in westminster the shinners in the corner were actually very reserved.
    I am confident the people of the south are capable of seeing through their duplicitous and two faced / headed monster.
    Many of us in the South whilst in despair of their antics would take exception to your ” what we in the North have been forced to accept” comment. Bacteria only grows where the conditions are right.

  • chrisjones2

    “complaining about financial improprieties” like murder? Polluting the water supply with mutagenic chemicals?

  • IRF

    Is this an attempt at revenge for Marty derailing FF’s preferred candidate in the Irish Presidential election TV debate a few years back?

  • Ernekid

    Jolly good thing that is true for Sinn Fein too eh?

  • Jack Stone

    Usually, I think Micheal Martin is just electioneering when he attacks Sinn Fein. This time he isn’t wrong. I believe that corruption in political donations should be investigated. (remember Taoiseach Bertie Ahern receiving £39,000 from friends in business which he failed to report and then later admitting that he had appointed people who gave him money to State boards?) Remember whistleblowers in the past have taken previous Irish Governments to task for blocking investigations into these issues.

  • Granni Trixie

    I’m sorry if it offends but many of us perceive people in the South to have been oblivious to what we have had to endure. There is also resentment that during the troubles there were havens for terrorists in some cases where they could even conduct “training”. This is what lies beyond many peoples negative attitude to the South though I do believe relationships have improved immensely since the GFA,

    For these reasons you could say the IRA campaign put back the cause of unity by decades.

  • Croiteir

    Ted Cunningham is reported as saying he identified himself as Fianna Fail republican – just saying

  • Ian Rate

    Granni,
    We were never oblivious. Countless thousands of us had to hang our heads in shame and embarrassment at acts carried out in our name. Being suspected of being one of them. London during the 80’s and 90’s wasn’t exactly a bag of laughs for Irish people from North or South.
    Whilst we didn’t endure what you did, on both sides, many of us tried to empathise.

    How do I deal with my next point … It is nigh impossible to avoid descending into “whataboutery”.

    Whilst many misguided / sympathetic / THREATENED gave sanctuary and training grounds to their terrorists of choice is it Ok for me to assume that the LVF, UVF and their ilk trained without help or support North of the border.
    Some are even rumoured to have been trained and even armed with government support.

    For the record I Love the word “whataboutery” , who coined it first and have the Ulster Fry put it on a T- Shirt yet?

  • Robin Keogh

    The only people who can answer such a question is the gardai or tge PSNI. But why would Martin bother if there is a cheap political point to store ?!

  • ted hagan

    Forced to accept? Sinn Fein are elected representatives, but then, of course, unionists were never too fond of democracy.

  • Croiteir

    No they are not the only people who can answer – that is why the question was put to SF

  • Cosmo

    His fellow Director, was Phil Flynn, Former VIce President SF, and alleged Director of Finance….. just saying.

  • Cosmo

    The USA.

  • Jag

    Is Basil McCrea’s Stormont assistant still beating his wife?

  • Granni Trixie

    Parking the whataboutery, that many did not sanction the Physical force campaign, and that people on this island were often labelled by negative stereotypes across the water, the fact remains that the IRA worsened relationships between north and south.
    I had to examine why for instance I had a negative emotional response when I saw the Irish flag and realised that it was because the IRA brought it into disrepute. Understandmg this was my route to changing an undesirable attitude which I hope it is being replicated to lead to change in the bigger picture.

    Incidentally my own father was in the ‘old’ IRA in WB and I remember when the South voted to repeal articles 2 &3 (hope this ref is accurate) an act of reconciliation I presume he said to me intensely “this means nothing to you, does it? When they brought in the border we went mad”. The “we” to him was people living around the Grosvenor Rd and Clonard, the world he knew. I really regret not asking him more about what else he remembers of those times. The gap of experience between my fathers and my generation brings it home to me that this will be a pattern of difference as regards the troubles.

  • Robin Keogh

    And whats the point in asking SF if he will only believe the answer he wants to hear?

  • TwinbrookLad

    Sorry, for a moment I thought you were referring to the OO & UUP & DUP. Its just that when you mention political parties being ruled by secret cabals in the background (Mervyn Storey at Stormont Hotel during Haas), the three groups above immediately came to mind

  • Croiteir

    It is not what Martin believes that matters

  • chrisjones2

    Well they did say that if we didn’t they would continue to kill us

  • chrisjones2

    Yes and sunlight is the best disinfectant so lets se some shone on the Army Council , the UVF UDA and all the rest of the “ex” PIRA now involved in organised crime.

  • chrisjones2

    What they say can be checked and verified in some cases – unless they just continue to lie as before

  • chrisjones2

    In the DUPs its the SPADs – bad enough – but in SF its the Army – much worse

  • John Collins

    Well if the that highly respectable lady Eileen Paisley is to be believed, and I have no reason to see why she should not be, there was a whole lot of ‘sleeze’ going on in the DUP as well.

  • Ian Rate

    I too still have problems with the flag. I only identify with it at sports events and only then when it’s a 26 county team. It was given back to us by a Jack Charlton.
    I feel that the tricolour is a clumsy unintended slight towards our N.I teammates.
    Is it time for a thirty two county flag for Rugby, cricket, hockey, sailing, golf, boxing events?. Or is another flag asking for trouble?
    On time spent talking with our parents, it’s invaluable. However after the Boston tapes you might find yourself being frisked first!

  • Ian Rate

    Sunlight, spotlights then cell lights.

  • Barneyt

    I hear what you are saying, but be careful you don’t let go of something that might otherwise appeal to you, if it were not for certain operators. I was once asked by a relative, why I had an Irish passport. They went on to say, I was not Irish and that I was British. This was a parent who brought me up in south Armagh. Now, my response was, “would you question a French man as to why he had a French passport?” In my late teens I allowed myself to be stripped of my identity as those that influenced me moved further and further way from Irish republicanism, having one played an active role…civil rather that military. I started to learn through living and studying in England in the 80’s that there was nothing wrong with being Irish and I started to own it again. My family got to the stage of deriding those who tried to speak the language and god knows how they would have reacted to the Irish tricolour. I now regard them as lost in many ways.

    For me they were allowing their enemies (from shared origins) to determine their path. They allowed their identity to be reduced and removed, simply because they wanted to create distance between themselves and the Irish republicans and the republicanism they left behind. They were also fascinated with being accepted into British unionism…which is a slightly different debate altogether.

    So, my point is, don’t let yourself be pushed from something that you might love, something that sits well with you…just because an assault has been made on your tradition or you feel you will be tarred with the wrong brush.

    There are many who have made the union flag and Britishness more offensive to the Irish than it ought to be, so it works in both directions.

  • aquifer

    They certainly have a lot of nice big posters at election time.

    Lets equalise fuel duty rates both sides of the border and tax red diesel, just in case somebody is using fuel tax to pay for re-election when it should be rebuilding hospitals.

  • Ian Rate

    Interesting, thank you. Reflected a while. The flag I’ve already mentioned.

    My attitudes towards the Irish Language and the GAA are heavily influenced by the provisional movement. I dislike them both for other reasons but SF / IRA certainly contributed.
    I can’t hold them responsible for my religious indifference or my attitude to traditional Irish music.
    I like my pint and wear my freckles with pride and the RA won’t take that away.

  • Croiteir

    And so my point is strengthened – thanks

  • Cosmo

    sorry, my comment should have read ” alleged IRA Director of Finance”.
    Convicted of money-laundering, Cunningham was quoted as saying, with regards to the wheelie-bin of Northern Bank cash etc …
    ” Flynn was the boss behind everything”
    ….with the implication being that SF/ IRA was behind it….

  • Greenflag 2

    You have heard of the Portlaoise Internment Camp where hundreds of those suspected of IRA activities were kept until 1998 approx ?

  • Granni Trixie

    Not sure what point you are making. But maybe that is the point?

  • chrisjones2

    ….sorry …..too many get out of jail free cards for that to happen

  • chrisjones2

    Absolutely. So lets see it all disinfected too

    All those Christian MLAs will need their souls cleansed