Did you hear what Gerry Adams said about Thomas Murphy?

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For those simple-minded enough to believe that Sinn Féin gets the same amount of critical comment in the media as other political parties, a look at the editorial in yesterday’s Irish Examiner should disabuse them of the notion.

The editorial is headed ‘Sinn Féin integrity brought into critical focus – Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy convicted’. The paper declares that Murphy’s conviction on nine tax charges brings into question the credibility of Gerry Adams as a leader and Sinn Féin as a party. It lists what was found on Mr Murphy’s farm   – several tankers, two shotguns, over 30,000 cigarettes and the equivalent €800,000 in sterling. Mr Murphy, it reminds readers, was once described as ‘a good republican’ by Gerry Adams. And it warns its readers against adding to Sinn Féin’s total of 14 Dail seats, given Mr Adams’s description of Murphy.

A couple of things. One is that the charges against Murphy have nothing to do with the IRA, they have to do with smuggling. I’ve sat for fifteen minutes now, trying to work myself up into a lather of indignation that anyone should use the border to smuggle stuff, and I simply can’t. Yes, I know we’re told it’s money out of the public purse, he should be paying duty charges and all the rest of it. Sorry, it still doesn’t work for me. Most republicans detest the existence of the border. That one of them should use it, while it still exists, for development of his business interests, strikes me more as an example of entrepreneurial enterprise rather than unforgivable illegality.

The second thing is that Gerry Adams called Murphy ‘a good republican’. For that, the leader of Sinn Féin and all of his party, according to the Examiner,  should be shunned by voters. Oh come on, Mr Examiner. Don’t you think that link is just a teensy bit tenuous, for you to move from it to condemnation of every single Sinn Féin candidate in the coming election?  If you’re going to do that, what about all those people who presumably were planning to buy or had bought this illegal fuel and cigarettes – wouldn’t they have a closer link with Mr Murphy than Gerry Adams? Wouldn’t there be some way we could penalise them too?

In a Freudian moment, the paper concedes that Sinn Féin may see Mr Murphy’s arrest as  linked with the coming election. If they did they could be forgiven. For the very good reason that the Examiner is following the tradition of the media on this island: Shinner-bashing with particular gusto  as election-time comes round.

Thomas Murphy won’t be standing as a candidate in this election. The electorate in the south, one can only hope, will see through this  linking of Murphy and Adams for the nonsense it is. Sinn Féin are putting their policies – including a costed health programme – before the south’s electorate. They should be judged on the worth of what they offer, as well as the recorded broken promises of both the Fianna Fail and Fine Gael parties. If the electorate chooses to vote with the words of papers like the Examiner ringing in their ears, let’s hope they react as did voters when Gerry Adams was imprisoned in the mouth of another election.

There are many scandals in the southern state, notably the fact that it failed to construct an even half-reasonable health service during the heady days of the Celtic Tiger. The patent and on-going bias of the media against Sinn Féin may not be a scandal of equal proportions, but it comes close, it comes close.



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62 Responses to Did you hear what Gerry Adams said about Thomas Murphy?

  1. giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 11:59 am #

    If SF become a party of government they will hopefully not share your relaxed attitude towards criminal activity.
    This entrepreneur has been trading in illegal cigarettes produced in Chinese sweatshops by children and at the other end sold on to children in Ireland. A good republican indeed.
    I wonder how many people felt the force of Murphy and his ilk in the running of his empire?
    Paul Quinn springs to mind.
    Your romantic view of Robin Hood types smuggling hams in their grannies knickers is extremely naive.
    These are not victimless crimes.

    • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 12:22 pm #

      Right, gio – let’s deal with facts. How do you know that Mr Murphy’s illegal cigarettes were produced in Chinese workshops – what is your source? And would that be a different sweat shop from, say, Nike? You seem to suggest some connection between Paul Quinn and Thomas Murphy – why not spit it out and again, let us know your source for this? My ‘romantic view of Robin Hood types’ etc – I don’t remember mentioning Robin Hood. Or someone’s granny’s knickers (though my Auntie Peg used to smuggle jam in hers and yes, I feel deeply shamed by my connection with her).’There are no victimless crimes’ – now that has a ring. Something like a headmaster or even a judge might say, more in sorrow than in anger. So who’s the victim of Mr Murphy’s smuggling – other than the British Exchequer?

      • giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 3:15 pm #

        China is I think the biggest producer of counterfeit cigarettes. But you are right. Maybe it was a Malaysian sweatshop.
        (Why mention Nike by the way?)
        Or do you think the benevolent Mr Murphy has a team of elves happily beavering away somewhere as they sweep the rat shit into a pile ready for rolling?
        As for Paul Quinn maybe you should ask his parents Jude.
        Do you thing a smuggling operation such as Slab’s ran for so many years without any blood being shed?
        Do you think no children were sold those cigarettes?
        Truly Mr Murphy was a wonderful gentleman thief.
        It was the Irish exchequer he was robbing by the way and the Irish people of course, but sure who cares!

        • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 3:56 pm #

          I can see you don’t like Mr Murphy, gio – call it sixth sense, call it thoughtful reading of character, but that’s what I think…Now, back to China etc. So you’re conceding you don’t know what sweat shop Mr Murphy’s ciggies came from. In fact, you’d probably agree you have no evidence they came from a sweatshop anywhere. Right? Why mention Nike? Because there was evidence that they’d used child labour in the Far East to produce some of their stuff. Next: no, I don’t think Mr Murphy has elves, nor do I believe there was rat shit in a pile…You’ll really have to stop smoking those herbal roll-your-owns, gio – they cloud the judgement. Do I think Mr Murphy’s smuggling operation ran without blodshed? No idea. None. But I’m guessing you do, so maybe you’d explain what and how you know? ‘Do you think no children were sold those cigarettes?’ – oh dear. Oh dear oh dear oh dear. So that’s his crime,eh? Selling ciggies to underage kids. Mmm. Throw away the key, I say. A wonderful gentleman thief? I don’t remember saying that. That he was wonderful or a gentleman…or a thief? So smuggling and stealing are the same? I think you’ll find generations of people near the border would part ways with you there. He was robbing the Irish exchequer? I’m trying to figure that out – I thought he was convicted ( in a jury-free court) in the north. Have I got that wrong? As to who cares about his doing the British Exchequer out of money – or even the Irish, which he wasn’t – I simply can’t get exercised about it. Shameful – too true. But there you are. There should be more people with a conscience – like yourself – and this would be a better place. I think.

          • giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 6:44 pm #

            There does not seem to be much to like about the man. A thief and a liar with allegations of much worse dogging him.
            Here is a link explaining how he was convicted by a Dublin court though the media are probably making that up knowing them.
            I don’t understand why you are so complacent about his crime? Are children being sold cigarettes with god knows what in them ok with you?
            Maybe read a little about the production of counterfeit cigarettes before you laugh it off.

          • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 8:08 pm #

            I declare, gio, as God is my maker, you are beginning to sound like the local vicar…

          • giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 9:06 pm #

            Poor evasion Jude.
            Are you satisfied that it was in fact an Irish court, and Irish tax payers he was robbing now?

          • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 10:14 pm #

            I must say I thought it was the north. But if you say it was the south, gio, it must have been the south. I’m sure Mr Murphy’s failure to contribute his fair share will bring the government – not to mention all those bankers and developers – to their knees. I really think you should find a world problem of greater significance for your compassion than the funds Murphy is creating government chaos by with-holding.

          • Ryan December 20, 2015 at 1:54 pm #

            Jude, Its also interesting to note that Mr Murphy wasn’t trialled by a Jury but by 3 Judges. Fair? I wasn’t around then, being a twinkle in my parents eye, but wasn’t there similar courts used here in the North during the Troubles? and from what I have read/watched they weren’t exactly independent or fair…..

            I’m sure it was just a coincidence Mr Murphy was trialled the same way…..

    • jessica December 20, 2015 at 11:41 am #

      “If SF become a party of government they will hopefully not share your relaxed attitude towards criminal activity.”

      Well said gio. Perhaps they will put an end to the billions the current and previous government are knowingly allowing to avoid the public coffers in the interest of corporate business deals. The US are particularly becoming more and more frustrated with this behaviour plus the EU has copped on to Mr Kenny. Ireland desperately need a sea change in government policy more than ever.

      If we are talking Robin hood style criminality, the Irish state has taken it to a whole new level.

      But this article is not about criminality, it is about a bewildering and prolonged intensity of blatant hatred for Sinn Fein that the vast majority of people on the ground simply do not share, though you appear to be one who does, and beneath than I am sure you have your own reasons.

      It will only end with their election to Dail Eireann and in putting an end to both corporate tax evasion, the border and all criminality stemming from it.

      Lets hope it is soon.

      • neill December 20, 2015 at 3:30 pm #

        Stop evading Jessica did he break the law yes or no?

        If yes why are you throwing up entirely spurious arguments trying to defend him?

        • jessica December 20, 2015 at 5:44 pm #

          “Stop evading Jessica did he break the law yes or no?
          If yes why are you throwing up entirely spurious arguments trying to defend him?”

          Who is evading, me or you?

          If he broke the law then I am sure he will be sentenced accordingly.
          Unlike the protected agents of the state who’s existence was officially confirmed in the recent report stating the army council was directing sinn fein. Pity they hadn’t realised they were being fed bullshit before publishing it but nice of them to put the fact state agents still exist on record.

          As for spurious arguments.

          The billions evaded in corporate tax in the south is very real, as is the frustration over this in the US as it is mostly US companies such as Apple benefitting and it is something we will be hearing more about from them in the future. Corporation tax is at 12.5% but some companies are paying less the 3% in real terms by laundering money through Ireland into off shore accounts.

          That would be real billions by the way.

          On the other hand I have read ridiculous articles about mr murphy, one saying he was costing the british exchequer 2.7 billion each year in lost taxes over fuel and other smuggling activities.

          Forgive me for being sceptical, but if that were true, he would be the richest man in Ireland if not the british isles.

          Perhaps the fact he was on the IRA Army council has nothing to do with the attitude from the papers, but I suspect it is more what is driving them in earnest to sell papers.

          As for Gerry Adams saying Mr Murphy who was on the Army Coucil and lent his support for the peace process in a difficult period was a good republican, I would back him 100% on those remarks as should we all.

          But seriously, are you expecting me to believe these alleged volumes of trafficking are going through a farm, so notoriously well known to the authorities and they are unable to do anything about it??? Seriously

          If that is the case, he is not just a good republican but a bloody genius and they should make a movie about him – but I will await the outcome of the courts.

          Back in the real world, I believe as a director of a farm if that is his status, he has failed to declare earnings since 1994 and even if his brother was the one running things, as a director it is his responsibility to know what money is earned and to ensure the appropriate tax is paid. If proven, outstanding moneys will have to be repaid or he will face imprisonment same as any business person who does likewise.

          • neill December 20, 2015 at 7:22 pm #

            I doubt you have much to do with business as you seem to know nothing about the difference between tax evasion and tax avoidance

          • jessica December 21, 2015 at 10:41 am #

            “I doubt you have much to do with business as you seem to know nothing about the difference between tax evasion and tax avoidance”

            Well neill, it would normally be down to legality but when the state knows it is going on and chooses to ignore it, you have to look a little bit closer.

            With the media attention over tax evasion on a farm level, you really have to ask why they allow poor governance to go unchallenged.

            There is something not quite right here and the public need to be made aware of it.

  2. neill December 19, 2015 at 12:52 pm #

    A couple of things. One is that the charges against Murphy have nothing to do with the IRA, they have to do with smuggling. I’ve sat for fifteen minutes now, trying to work myself up into a lather of indignation that anyone should use the border to smuggle stuff, and I simply can’t. Yes, I know we’re told it’s money out of the public purse, he should be paying duty charges and all the rest of it. Sorry, it still doesn’t work for me. Most republicans detest the existence of the border. That one of them should use it, while it still exists, for development of his business interests, strikes me more as an example of entrepreneurial enterprise rather than unforgivable illegality.

    So you support criminality now Jude that’s really sad I suspect when Nolan and Talk back see this they will have a field day with you.

    So who’s the victim of Mr Murphy’s smuggling – other than the British Exchequer?
    The NHS Social services Roads etc

    • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 1:00 pm #

      Ah neill – ever one for jumping ahead of himself…I at no point said I supported criminality. I said I couldn’t work myself into a lather of indignation about smuggling – and I can’t. Sorry. V remiss of me as a loyal subject in Norneverland but that’s how it is. As to T Murphy’s foul deeds starving the NHS – ha, ha, ha! That’s the best laugh I’ve had in a while , neill. Thank God he’s not starving Trident.

    • jessica December 20, 2015 at 11:52 am #

      “So who’s the victim of Mr Murphy’s smuggling – other than the British Exchequer?
      The NHS Social services Roads etc”

      You could say the same about flag protests etc… being a drain on resources or the ridiculous volume of orange marches each year to maintain memories that inspire hatred and animosity of their catholic neighbours.

      Perhaps the same response is apt.
      Sure the English tax payers can afford it. they have billions to throw our way each year in maintaining the border.

  3. fiosrach December 19, 2015 at 12:53 pm #

    I know a man who knows a man who saw Slab’s dog foul the pavement. How can we use this against G Adams and Sinn Féin in the forthcoming elections? C’mon, use your brains. There must be some connection. Oh,btw, are the northern cars going across the border not depriving the British Exchequer too?

  4. Iolar December 19, 2015 at 1:27 pm #

    It is up to the electorate to distinguish between verbal diarrhoea and the torrents of water in the west of Ireland. Flooding is now an election issue. The paw marks of the Celtic Tiger have been washed away in the aftermath of storm Desmond and the electorate around Athlone are left to deal with detritus and raw sewage. The Tiger may not be around but many of the elected representatives are. Generations of the same politicians were in power, however, hydroelectric power was the last thing on their minds, as money flowed into offshore accounts. Many of the constituencies remain the most socially and economically deprived in the country. Some journalists might be better employed if they did some research on deprivation, self harm and suicide in the west coast of Ireland.

    Thousands of Irish people are flowing out of the country in order to find work while there is ample work in Ireland connected with hydroelectric, wind power and a national sewage system. Hundreds of septic tanks are not fit for purpose yet water is being wasted in the same way that time and money will be wasted given pending court appearances associated with the tax on water, courtesy of the Labour Party.

    “There is a tide in the affairs of men/Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune/Omitted, all the voyage of their life/Is bound in shallows and in miseries/
    On such a full sea are we now afloat…”

    We should learn from our Dutch neighbours, and live with water, not fight about it, or is that a pipe dream too far?

  5. des December 19, 2015 at 2:00 pm #

    would THOS MURPHY be the very first smuggler to keep shotguns for his own protection and keep his cash close to him rather than leave it in the hands of cheating bankers………..and btw he will not be jailed as it is not practice to jail for revenue offences otherwise it would be filled with BANKERS /TDs / SENATORS and COUNCILLORS

  6. Sherdy December 19, 2015 at 2:09 pm #

    I’m sure most of us either saw or heard about the recent RTE sting programme which showed a number of politicians from different parties (though none from Sinn Fein) showing their true avaricious nature in asking for and expecting to be bribed for helping planning applications.
    By the reasoning which the Examiner used for the above story, how come they haven’t linked the guilty councillors with their party leaders and recommended voters to ignore them at the next elections!

    • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 3:58 pm #

      I expect it was an oversight, Sherdy, which they are even now hurrying to rectify..

  7. Perkin Warbeck December 19, 2015 at 2:24 pm #

    Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy is a man, Esteemed Blogmeister, who has lived a goodly portion of his life living under the blood-stirring whirring of helicopters, which phenom has resulted in a discernible jump in the number of Trump hairstyles among the local mugwumps* in the area.

    Including the local branch of the LGBT, where the girls are so gay and so hearty.

    These choppers are the aerial wing of the B.A. for whom boots on the ground would be, for whatever reason, a step too far. To do with bad apples in the orchard of Erin’s green land, that sorta thingy.

    Which reminds one of cinema cliché number 33: ‘If a helicopter containing a villain is hit by a missile, it will explode immediately. If it contains a hero, it will fall slowly to the ground while emitting black smoke, enabling the hero to escape unhurt’.

    That is why Slab is such a hero to embedded editors like those chaps/ chapettes who like to pen lofty leading articles in the Cork Examiner. For his having survived the ambiance of Bandit Country and for not only becoming the inspiration behind the epigram: ‘Slab Murphy is to the laundry business what Sweeney Todd was to hairdressing’.

    But also for not only being caught for failing to lavish his bounty on the Revenue Commissioners ( aka tax evasion/avoidance) but for being convicted in the run up to an election.

    And for not only being convicted in the run up to an election but for providing the raison d’etre for putting An Bhrog/The Boot into G. Adams, T.D. And for not only etc but for also for allowing opportunity to knock for such taxation experts as Senator Mairia to flaunt her fiscal booty.

    Slaboratory Tests

    The Nabobs set out to smash and nab Slab
    Whose politics are decked out in olive drab
    Like a side of Moby Dick
    Their harpoons did stick
    But not as many as in his app, Captain Ahab.

    *mugwump: a word derived from the original Algonquin used to describe a Republican in Massachusetts for failing to support the party nominee for the Presidency in 1884.

    Another word, oddly enough, derived from a different, original language is Texas Lane in Malahide. The original was Lana na gCanacha / Taxes Lanes. It might be said that Slab has received not one but Two Yellow Roses of Taxes, resulting in one Red Rose.

    And as all the morally superior cohort – from the embedded editors to a too certain Senator – will confirm the leprechaun for condemn and tax are one and the same: cain.

    Cain and unable, anyone?

  8. Jim.hunter December 19, 2015 at 2:27 pm #


  9. michael c December 19, 2015 at 3:30 pm #

    A man who bought smuggled diesel on occasions many years ago told me he was amazed at some of the “pillars of society” from “both traditions” that he encountered when he filled his car in the “yard of iniquity”!

  10. John Clinton December 19, 2015 at 4:40 pm #

    Corruption in Ireland now there’s a good one, at this stage inquirys into the inquirys, austerity right wing governments, always playing for the elite, bankers crisis, homeless crisis, hospital crisis, immigration crisis, elderly crisis, climate crisis, media crisis, China crisis, I could go on and on.

  11. John Clinton December 19, 2015 at 7:57 pm #

    The IRA don’t exist, why do so many mention them breath as sinn fein, the sooner we have out of our vocalabery the better for all, criminal activity in Ireland will always be, ask the Banksters, nama, IBRC, corrupted corporate companies, the government nazi austerity activities,the mahon tribunal, just to name a few whether it be bribery, cigarettes, children cheap labour China, it’s a crime against humanity, trading with China

  12. paddykool December 19, 2015 at 7:59 pm #

    The fact that the man is a republican or a unionist is an irrelevance if he is being tried for smuggling or iffy tax -evading finances…..If he picked up fifty or so parking tickets would he be tried as a republican or a unionist or simply as someone who parks on double -yellow lines .?.Who are they trying to kid here? He sounds like a bona fide smuggler to me and he may also vote as a republican but we might as well be discussing his sex-life here for all it has to do with his politics .Is he a country friend of that townie Gerry Adams or simply a party supporter like thousands of other criminals and law-breakers of one stripe or another across the political parties out there?

    • giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 9:04 pm #

      The man is not just any republican is he?. Not just a simple party supporter who turned out to be filling out his tax returns wrongly.
      Attempting to say Slab Murphy and his years of smuggling have nothing to do with Gerry and the fund raising that went on for the movement is frankly ludicrous.
      I expect that from Jude, but you usually have a less rose tinted view.

      • Jude Collins December 19, 2015 at 10:16 pm #

        If you find me so ludicrous, gio, why do you read me? Or do you just enjoy making sweeping condemnations of anyone who doesn’t agree with you?

        • neill December 19, 2015 at 10:59 pm #

          Perhaps he is intrigued by your ability to defend the indefensible?

          • Jude Collins December 20, 2015 at 12:07 pm #

            That strikes me, neill, as a fine example of a pointless remark, unoriginal and unsubstantiated. Must try harder…

        • giordanobruno December 19, 2015 at 11:54 pm #

          I think smuggling cigarettes of unknown content so they can be sold on to minors without any control is a bad thing. You apparently don’t.
          It’s just something good republicans do.
          I am calling the argument you (and surprisingly, paddyk) appear to be making ludicrous, not you personally.
          Why not debate the point instead of all this namecalling (vicar? really?).

          • Jude Collins December 20, 2015 at 11:47 am #

            Well, even Homer nods, gio – apologies for tossing the vicar in. But I still think to be in a lather over smuggling – we’re not talking Mexicans in the back of a truck here – is a bit like getting upset about someone spitting out a piece of gum. I remember a time when all sorts of authorities urged us to have a cigarette because it was stylish and good for you. ‘It’s just something good republicans do’ – isn’t that a sweeping bit of name-calling as well? I am and have been debating the point. I have never considered smuggling as a moral issue – rather as people taking advantage of a border which they heartily wish wasn’t there. There’s a certain grim logic there, wouldn’t you say?

          • jessica December 20, 2015 at 12:20 pm #

            “I think smuggling cigarettes of unknown content so they can be sold on to minors without any control is a bad thing. You apparently don’t.
            It’s just something good republicans do.”

            I have posted being against smuggling many times, called them criminals and posted my belief that they are assisted by the fact many are still state agents and untouchable by the PSNI to their frustration.

            Are you saying I am not a good republican or simply lashing out your anti republican rhetoric once again?

            What are your feelings towards the British state who still have such criminals on their payroll as agents?

          • giordanobruno December 20, 2015 at 6:00 pm #

            Don’t start. I wasn’t addressing you at all. I am referring to Murphy’s status as a good republican. Specifically I am replying to Jude’s seeming lack of concern about his activities.
            I am glad you are more unequivocal in your condemnation of Murphy and his kind.
            Of course I agree about any agents on the British payroll (as I have said to you before) that they should be exposed and tried for any criminal activities where evidence can be found.

          • Jude Collins December 20, 2015 at 6:45 pm #

            ‘and his kind’, gio – what kind do you have in mind? REpublicans? S Armagh people? Anyone who smuggles (or has smuggled?). Try to be more precise.

          • jessica December 20, 2015 at 7:40 pm #

            “I am glad you are more unequivocal in your condemnation of Murphy and his kind.”

            Gio, I am not particularly concerned about his activities either.

            There are files on all agents and plenty of evidence but it is being deliberately kept out of the reach of the PSNI and the law under the banner of convenience national security.

            While the PSNI are unable to touch the main protagonists of cross border criminality due to agents being involved, then why not use them to make money?
            Seems to me the agents are well known anyway and are being used to get away with criminality and to feed back misinformation. If it weren’t so serious it would be laughable.

            Perhaps putting an end of MI5 activity here will help put an end to this symptom of continuing british misrule here.

            I would like to see a cross border police authority reporting to both states to deal with smuggling, with full disclosure of all state evidence currently protected behind national security. That is the single biggest act which would make a difference, yet you are not behind it.

            There would be nowhere to hide.

            If the authorities are not prepared to do this, then I would have bigger questions than tax avoidance.

            I am glad you are more unequivocal that agents should be exposed though your condition on where evidence can be found when it is officially protected is the real stumbling block.

            The media, like you make no attempt to call for this evidence to be released and therefore are quite content for known murderers to get off scott free so long as the british state approves it.

            Time to take a good look in the mirror gio.

          • giordanobruno December 20, 2015 at 6:34 pm #

            You are not really comparing smuggling to spitting gum are you? Children getting access to cigs with who know what in them, is a serious problem.
            Why do you disagree? Please explain.
            Are you relaxed about shops being allowed to sell them to children then?
            That would be no worse.
            We have not even mentioned the environmental damage caused by diesel laundering in S Armagh, but maybe you are feel that is not a moral issue either?

          • Jude Collins December 20, 2015 at 6:43 pm #

            Yes I was, actually, gio. Sptting gum and smuggling are both things we’d be better without (a bit like partition that way). You keep going on about children and cigarettes. How do you know children are getting these cigarettes (besides, I thought they’d been impounded). And who are these children you speak of anyway? I’ve not seen or heard any reports of children’s involvement. I’m sure diesel laundering may involve pollution, although since I’m not an environmentalist ( I’m assuming you are) I can’t speak of it definitively. I do know that a man from S Armagh was in a dispute on this blog on Facebook and he said he lived there and that the water in S Armagh was fine. Maybe you should make a trip and check it out yourself.In any case the children smoking cigarettes, the environmental damage – these are conclusions you’ve drawn. Me, I don’t know of such things. And btw – aren’t there different things can be smuggled? Are you against it in all cases on moral grounds? I’d be interested to hear.

          • giordanobruno December 21, 2015 at 11:41 am #

            You are not concerned about the impact of the trade in illegal tobacco on society, or the use of sweatshops to produce counterfeit fags?
            That is all part of his business.
            You are not concerned about toxic sludge being dumped on the back roads of South Armagh and the subsequent clean up costs?
            You are not concerned about the risk of associated violence these activities bring.
            Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe killed by a criminal gang in 2013. One the gang (at least)is now thought to be involved in fuel smuggling.
            This is not the ‘Dukes of Hazzard’.
            How am I in any way content for murderers to get of scott free?
            That is rubbish jessica and you ought to take it back.

          • jessica December 21, 2015 at 12:20 pm #

            “You are not concerned about the impact of the trade in illegal tobacco on society, or the use of sweatshops to produce counterfeit fags?
            That is all part of his business.”

            I am concerned about all of those things gio, but it is the responsibility of the police to deal with it.
            If state activities are preventing them from doing that, then it needs to be addressed as a priority.

            The bulk of this activity you mention is being carried out by dissidents of which many are state agents and are enemies of Sinn Fein who have already called them criminals and enemies of the peace process.

            But how do you think they are getting away with it so easily?

            If you are saying that Mr Murphy is running dissident groups then he should be locked up for that alone, I detest them.

            It would also mean he is no longer in support of Gerry Adams or Sinn Feins peace strategy which needs to be clarified if that is now the case.

            I would prefer to know the truth and not listen to hysterical witch hunts.

            As for it not being ‘Dukes of Hazzard’, unfortunately it is much, much worse. The state is complicit in murder and preventing the police from confronting criminality to protect informants. It is more akin to the SS or KJB.

            “How am I in any way content for murderers to get of scott free?”

            By being so robust against the likes of Mr Murphy but at the same time, turning a blind eye to state sanctioned murder, allowing them to protect agents who have committed murders, allowing them to deny the PSNI to deal with criminality.

            Ask the PSNI chief constable why he cannot put an end to smuggling? He wont be saying it is due to them being inept I can tell you.

            Either you are naïve enough not to believe they would do such things or you worse you choose to support them which makes you complicit in my eyes.

          • giordanobruno December 22, 2015 at 8:00 am #

            Once again you accuse me of turning a blind eye to murder. Offensive nonsense.
            Prove it or retract it.
            Of course I want the PSNI to resolve these issues, but you forget to put any responsibility on the man doing the crime,namely Slab Murphy. Dissidents, the PSNI, state agents, the media, all too blame, yet the man actually dealing in death is given a bye ball. Why?
            The activities I mention are his responsibility and he was either lining his own pockets or funding the Republican movement. Either is unacceptable in my view.

          • Jude Collins December 22, 2015 at 10:46 am #

            What are you talking about, gio – ‘The man dealing in death’? By that standard, my local petrol station is a lethal centre – they sell cigarettes too. Murphy is being done for not paying taxes, as I understand; if he’s ‘dealing in death’, don’t you think you should tell the authorities and give them some verifiable leads? Go easy on that Christmas sherry in the meantime…

          • jessica December 22, 2015 at 12:58 pm #

            “Once again you accuse me of turning a blind eye to murder. Offensive nonsense.
            Prove it or retract it.”

            Mr Murphy was sent to a criminal court for a lesser crime than those committed by members of both Fine Gael and Fianna Fail.

            You have quoted as evidence accusations made by self confessed british agents including that of murder of which he is not even on trial for.

            You have also accused Mr Murphy of managing dissidents, something I know the british state is doing but was unaware the Mr Murphy was doing likewise.
            As I have said, if that was the case, I would support you in saying he should go to jail, but you are making all sorts of allegations and quoting despicable sources that I despise. Is it only me who finds you just a little too enthusiastic to espouse the lies of the state?

            If there was evidence, he would be locked away already.

            It takes a certain type of person to command respect in south armagh, that respect was vital in ensuring we all have peace today and peace which we deserve is being played with by irresponsible people.

            I have no confidence in the special court based on its track record of gardai falsifying evidence and political interference. Appeal will likely confirm it was unjust and throw it out which means once again, irish politics is playing the same dirty tactics as the british and to say it has nothing to do with elections and sinn feins growing popularity is extremely foolish.

            What happened to innocent until proven guilty?

            That would not exist if your ilk have their way.

            And perhaps you should consider proving your own accusations if you don’t like the same done to yourself.

      • paddykool December 20, 2015 at 1:01 am #

        Well gio..I don’t know anything about this guy or Gerry either.You tell me what you actually know and educate me because all I or anyone else knows comes straight from the media.I would love to hear all those secret details…

        • giordanobruno December 21, 2015 at 7:59 am #

          It is no secret. Spend ten minutes googling him.
          Here is an example
          “Sean O’Callaghan and Eamon Collins, former members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army, testified against him, as did members of the Gardaí, ROI customs officials, British Army and local TD Brendan McGahon. Collins, who also had written a book about his experiences, Killing Rage, was beaten and killed by having a spike driven through his face, near his home in Newry eight months later”
          Or just ask the people of S Armagh. Maybe start with Paul Quinn’s family..
          Simply a party supporter? You must mean the Green Party, given his work in improving the environment in S Armagh.

          • Jude Collins December 21, 2015 at 10:12 am #

            Where do you get your information, gio? I knew Eamon Collins and I don’t remember talk of a spike being drive through his face to kill him. Eamon was a likeable man but erratic, with a thirst for public attention. I think his death was cruel (spike or no spike) but I wouldn’t describe him as a reliable narrator. I don’t know O’Callaghan’s case particularly well but I do know he’s been described by different people as being a fantasist as well as an informer.

          • jessica December 21, 2015 at 10:20 am #

            “It is no secret. Spend ten minutes googling him.”

            Sean O’Callaghan and Eamon Collins were both paid MI5 agents.
            How do you know a state agent didn’t kill Paul Quinn?
            Is it not time we got to the real truth behind all this murkiness?
            Why is the british and irish states still hiding evidence and running agents if the conflict is really over?

            Is it not the truth, the conflict isn’t yet over in their eyes until they get the result they want?

            How do you know what lengths they will go to, to get there?

            Do you even understand how many are sceptical of the state and will prefer to await the outcome of due process rather than conduct a media witch hunt which is what you are sinking to gio.

          • giordanobruno December 21, 2015 at 10:25 am #

            Of course they were fantasists, that must be it.
            The same undoubtedly goes for the other witnesses listed “members of the Gardaí, ROI customs officials, British Army and local TD Brendan McGahon”.
            The same goes for Paul Quinn’s family
            Because everyone else must be lying obviously, about this good republican.

          • Jude Collins December 21, 2015 at 10:49 am #

            There you go again, gio – launching off on a panorama of ‘the same undoubtedly goes for’s…I don’t think I said anyone was lying. I knew Eamon Collins and I knew the sort of guy he was, I promise you (no relation, btw). I don’t know O’Callaghan but I definitely have heard/read the word ‘fantasist’ attached to his name. But then if that were true, it would mean all the stuff he says would have a shaky foundation, so clearly he’s not a fantasist.

  13. Ryan December 19, 2015 at 9:59 pm #

    Why wasn’t Slab’s stalker Willie Frazer called to give evidence? Willie released another weird video (one of many hundreds, yes, hundreds….) last night to gloat about Slab’s conviction and then accuses Slab of dating a 10 year old. Yes, you read that correctly. That was nutty Willies accusation, btw, not mine. And like most (if not all) of Willies accusations I’m sure it will turn out false.

    It just goes to show you the length this buck eejit will go to get attention. From protesting over a “fleg” to protesting that Belfast International Airport doesn’t sell enough “Ulster Folk” merchandise, Willie loves the limelight.

    • Sherdy December 19, 2015 at 10:42 pm #

      Ryan, I think you’re being very unfair to ordinary decent buck eejits by comparing them with Willie Frazer!

  14. Argenta December 19, 2015 at 11:03 pm #

    I was wondering how long it would take you to present us with a”nothing to see here folks,move along” line on Slab Murphy and true to form you didn’t disappoint !
    In response to Gio(3-56pm)you say “I thought he was convicted(in a jury free court) in the north.Was that seriously your level of understanding of the case? You continually chide posters about making allegations without supporting evidence.Is the conviction of Mr Murphy by 3 Judges in the Special Criminal Court sufficient for you?You may or may not be aware that Slab and his legal team fought all the way to prevent this case reaching a non-jury court.
    Sinn Fein(of which Slab is a loyal supporter) always emphasise that it is a party of equality.But obviously some are more equal than others!!The flavour of your blog ,as I understand it is to portray Slab as just another South Armagh smuggler and you seem to be pretty relaxed about his failing to furnish tax returns for nearly a decade from 1996.Maybe paying tax is just for ordinary folk like ourselves,Jude!
    No doubt when Murphy comes up for sentencing,his counsel will seek to put forward reasons why his client should not be jailed.One presumes that his good friend Gerry Adams T D will be present as a “character ” witness!

    • Jude Collins December 20, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

      ‘Maybe paying tax is just for ordinary folk like ourselves,Jude!’ – dunno about you, Argie, but I pay mine. Do you really think Mr Murphy hasn’t been targeted re tax because of his republican background? Or that the south isn’t stiff with people dancing around their tax and at a level that’d make T Murphy look threadbare? Yes I did think he’d been tried in the north. So it was the other side of the border. Should I go out now and hang myself in the barn for shame? To use your term, Argie, you seem fairly relaxed about Mr Murphy being tried in a non-jury court. You think that’s OK? And you think G Adams shouldn’t be allowed to pass comment on the qualities of Murphy or anyone else? Why’s that? The long and short of it is people are hugging themselves because they think this case might damage GA/SF. So what else has changed?

  15. Mark December 20, 2015 at 11:24 am #

    Newspapers this morning getting stuck into Thomas in a huge way, like the Cork Examiner, why one may ask, there are certainly more important issues.
    The Cork Examiner is a long time rag of the Irish Labour Party, frankly, the great Ulstermen who founded this politics here must be rolling in their graves at these media supporting this party which has supported dreadful cuts to services on working people, increased taxation to pay the gambling debts of foreign millionaires.
    Other papers, the Times for example, have had issues with Thomas Murphy previously which, what appeared a hostile Court, ruled in favour of unproven allegations the paper had printed.
    The big, big issue which these media, with their ILP, TCD liberalism inherent, are failing to address is, why, on a matter seemingly connected to evasion of tax, was any Irish citizen tried in a non jury special Court, are our, proven, less than honest Judiciary, (“OECD has issued damning report on our levels of judicial integrity,” McGrath 08-07-2015) frightened of an old man from south Ulster?
    If we attempted to hear a similar case in similar fashion against any other person, like a Deputy for Tipp. North, there would be uproar and, these same pseudo liberals, would be demanding the Human Rights authorities seek referral of this to the european court for human rights, not so for a wee man from south Ulster because, allegedly, he supported the anti-english/Irish status quo movements.

  16. Argenta December 22, 2015 at 11:05 am #

    In one of your frequent replies to Gio,you mention that you knew Eamon Collins.Are we allowed to ask how you came to know him?Judging by his book he seemed an interesting if flawed character.He hardly deserved the murder that was visited on him.

    • Jude Collins December 22, 2015 at 1:21 pm #

      I agree with you on pretty well every syllable of what you say, Argenta. As to how I knew him, no,I won’t tell you that. May he rest in peace – his end was cruel.

  17. Dean Gurley December 23, 2015 at 1:05 am #

    Like most Americans, we got sporadic news during the Troubles and it was mostly about the evil IRA killing British soldiers….I never heard of the Protestant paramilitaries or if I did I rejected them in favor of my hatred of the mean ole IRA….imagine my surprise at learning about Bloody Sunday and other atrocities committed by the British soldiers and the assassination of Catholics by Protestant death squads…adults killing adults is one thing, but killing Catholic children with plastic bullets is just so wrong that I can’t even think of a word that would express the condemnation that I have for the soldiers….I would say that my past condemnation of the IRA has been tempered by reading and observing…I see that harassment of Catholics continue with the marches near Catholic areas…such silliness by one side against the other is counterproductive….as far as taxes go, everyone should pay their taxes..corporations and churches too…the tax rate should be graduated according to income level

    • jessica December 23, 2015 at 11:45 am #

      “Like most Americans, we got sporadic news during the Troubles and it was mostly about the evil IRA killing British soldiers”

      As with all conflicts, terrible deeds are committed by all sides.
      There have been many state sponsored enquiries which have dug up some of the evidence which has proven state collusion and directing of loyalist murder gangs.

      There is no sweetening up the atrocities which were indeed carried out on both sides, but it is not justice to demonise the IRA while the state hide behind national security for evidence which slipped through the gaps as most was destroyed or inexplicably misled by both the irish and british states.

      The two are singing off the same hymn sheet.

      As for tax crimes, they should never be heard in special courts designed to accept and convict purely on the word of police or state employees with zero evidence required.

      Already this has been abused in Ireland with millions paid out in compensation after gardai were proven to have falsified evidence to obtain conviction.

      Look beneath the surface and you wont see a pretty picture.

  18. sarahcarabine September 13, 2016 at 9:37 pm #

    very interesting,although i didnt fully understand some of the politics in it. But i have to say it was interesting in the fact of all the different outlooks on the Slab Murphy case,it has opened my mind quite a bit,but i will re-read it again,as i thought it was a great bit of education,my husband always uses this wee quote, Two men were looking through Prison Bars, One sees Mud, The Other sees Stars