Court report on Mayday protest arrestee
Once again, this morning I found myself in another courthouse. It's the nature of our politics, that we are constantly on collision course with the authorities in whatever land we find ourselves. Polly Murphy was in court today in the bridewell for Trespass, section 13 of the all-encompassing, and all captivating laws under Public Order.
[Polly was arrested and charged with trespass a couple of days before the Mayday protest, then held in Mountjoy for 9 days until the Mayday weekend had passed. She had come over from Britain and after her arrest with the two others held underwent a vitriolic 'trial by media' in both the tabloids and broadsheets where all sorts of accusation were made that had nothing to do with the charges brought. Her bail conditions, which are incredibly restrictive for a trespass charge, mean that she has to stay in Ireland and sign on at a Gardai station 3 times per week! This together with the 9 days already spent in Mountjoy amount to considerably more punishment than anyone brought up on a tresspass charge ever gets, leaving no room for doubt that this is political persecution, pure and simple. (Explanatory note added by Joe Black)]
The warm courthouse was packed this morning with people. The judge, a bearded character, appeared to be in good humour, which gave me hope. Polly sat at the back of the court 46 with a few of us. The back of the courthouse is the public gallery where friends and the accused lounge in pews that remind one of a church. Just directly in front of me a drunk, weather beaten man, swayed from right to left occasionally slipping in and out of consciousness. In front of the public, the not so thin blue line of Gardai stand waiting for their cases to be called. The court clerk called each case and the judge either pushed it out to another date in the future, issued a bench warrant for the accused no-shows, or put the case back to second calling.
Finally, after about fifty minutes of these mumbling procedures at the top of the court, Polly's case was called. I couldn't quiet hear what was going on but distinctly heard the date of the 10th of November being mentioned. The arresting portly officer said that this would give him enough time to compile statements. Then it was onto the next case.
I met up with Polly outside who was having a rapid de-briefing session with her brief. The date was correct; the court would not deal with this case until the 10th of November. So for a minor offence, Polly has spent two weeks in custody, has to remain in a strange country for over six months to be tried. The state hasn't really complied a case, or got any real evidence so in effect what we have is a case of the punishment being meted out before the trial.
The arresting Garda spoke directly to Polly and explained that he would not have a problem with her getting her passport back. This is essential if she is to get any money from the doleocrats. He basically said that she was unlikely to receive any further punishment beyond that which she has already had to deal with, and he is supposed to be compiling the case against her. This is a flash if insight into how the justice system works. They procrastinate a case and make your life miserable prior to actually hearing any evidence. A case of guilty until you prove your innocence. Polly still has to sign on three times a week, and is on the verge of being destitute if the social services do not get their act together. I believe that if there was justice, she would be allowed return home to come back and face the Judge on the 10th of November. But I'm an idealist but a realist when it comes to dealing with the STATE and it's interpretation of Justice.
Help out a MayDay Arrestee
by Fergus Robson
firstname.lastname@example.org phone: 087 9376872
I am one of the MayDay arrestees,I am in need of video or photographic evidence concerning my arrest.
I was one of the three people sitting on the road to the left of the water cannon and directly in front of the riot police.I was batonned and kicked,and arrested without warning or being informed of reasons for my arrest. I was wearing a lightish blue shirt with white flowers and beige pants, i have blond hair. video/photos /witness accounts of :my arrest, my attempt to stop someone from hitting a guard (usually not very sensible or productive dont you agree?), my helping another injured protestor to safety when surrounded by riot police and anything else that may be considered useful in my defense would be greatly appreciated.
This is our chance to make utter arses of the pigs as not once did i occasion a breach of the peace, engage in abusive, violent or reckless behaviour and i did not recieve a specific order to remove my person. With the evidence that i am sure exists, somewhere, we can turn this into a major publicity victory, i can be contacted on 087 9376872, or at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org,
I am also a veteran of nearly all of last years shannon protests and used to use indymedia frequently under the name ---free thinker----
please help its not just for me its for all of us
''the only way to live,on this planet, at this moment, with any human dignity,is to struggle''
May Day spokespeople resign en masse
"Our job is done, our mandates are finished," say activists
Dublin Grassroots Network
The four spokespeople of the Dublin Grassroots Network - Aileen O'Carroll, Mark Malone, Liz Curry and Laurence Cox - have laid down their mandates, which were for the May Day events only. They will remain active in relation to ongoing court cases and possible legal action.
What is the Dublin Grassroots Network?
A brief look at the who, what, why and how of the DGN
In the run up to the Mayday protests, the Dublin Grassroots Network suddenly leapt to prominence and almost became a household name. However, despite all the coverage, there was little examination of the nature of this network that organised most of the Mayday protests. This text briefly describes the network, where it came from, who is involved, how it works and where it is going. For those who want to find out more or get involved, there is a public meeting at 2:30pm on Saturday May 22nd in the Teachers Club on Parnell Square, where we will be talking about the good and bad of the Mayday weekend and our plans for the Bush visit.
Brief report of Anti-War Ireland organising meeting, 15/5/04
Organising for the Bush demos and in support of Mary Kelly
Anti-War Ireland, a national alliance of anti-war groups, held its most recent organising meeting in the Teachers' Club, Parnell Square, Dublin, between 2pm and 6pm on Saturday, May 15th. Roughly 30 people attended, mostly from Dublin groups, but also including activists from Galway, Cork, Kilkenny and Clonakilty.
1. BUSH VISIT: Anti-War Ireland has called a demonstration to oppose the presence of Bush and the US military at Shannon airport. This will assemble at 8pm in Shannon town centre, on Friday evening, June 25th.
There was a wide-ranging and energetic discussion on the Bush visit, during which members of the Galway-based AmBush2004 group and various Grassroots groups indicated their willingness to work alongside Anti-War Ireland. Many suggestions were made regarding the format of the protests at Shannon, but everybody agreed that Shannon is the place to be on Friday evening, June 25th, as Bush arrives in the country. It was suggested that we should be looking at a weekend of events rather than just the demonstration on the Friday night. The auspices under which this wider range of protests/manifestations will be organised has yet to be decided, but it was agreed to establish a Bush visit working group (drawn from from a number of organisations) that will meet again at 8pm in the Teachers' Club next Saturday night.
The Cork Anti-War Campaign has suggested that the weekend before the arrival of Bush be made a national weekend of 'festive protest' with the aim of creating inclusive events that would bring out large numbers in opposition to the war policy of the Bush administration. A concert/peace picnic and 'white ribbon day' will be held in Cork city, and other areas have indicated an interest in doing similar events. This weekend of protest (broad-based and inclusive) would help to build for the events the following weekend at Shannon, where we will meet the warmonger-in-chief as he arrives on Irish soil.
Also see long report on farmleigh eu noise demo