Vermeer's The Concert

Vermeer's The Concert

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Stolen Vermeer, Dessie's Divine Intervention, Slab's Saintly Salvation !!

The Sunday Times December 17, 2006
Bad boy Dessie a saint, say his friends,

A Saintly Task for this New Saint !!

Art Hostage says, Sincerity is, by the Discovery of the Stolen Vermeer in a Confession Box ??

Liam Clarke
LAST week he was accused of being involved in vicious gangland crime in Dublin, but friends of Dessie O’Hare insist he is something of a saint. The former terrorist is said to have been working with children’s charities, accompanying pilgrims to Lourdes and supervising handicapped people on retreat.

Last Tuesday, O’Hare was accused by tabloid newspapers in Dublin and Belfast of murdering Martin “Marlo” Hyland, reputedly Ireland’s most important drug dealer, and Anthony Campbell, an innocent plumber.

The double murder was supposed to have borne the hallmarks of O’Hare, who chiselled off the fingers of a dentist he kidnapped in 1987. Newspapers claimed the gardai were looking for the Border Fox and that he had gone on the run.

Now authoritative security sources say O’Hare is not a suspect and that his whereabouts are known to gardai.

Willie Gallagher, a spokesman for the IRSP and who works with former INLA prisoners including O’Hare, said: “The first we heard he was being accused was when a journalist rang an IRSP member on the day of the murders to ask if it was true. I rang Dessie and he was in a convent outside Dublin. That’s where he told me he was. I am sure it was true.”

Gallagher says O’Hare did meet Hyland in prison. Security sources say that the drug dealer sent O’Hare money on his release from jail, but they put this down to an effort by Hyland to buy friends.

“Dessie met all sorts of people in jail but I would be very surprised if he involves himself in illegal activity,” Gallagher said. “Apart from anything else, he was released on licence under very strict conditions. He knows the Irish government would return him to prison if he gives any excuse or reason to do so.”

Under the terms of his licence, O’Hare must not mix with criminals or give press interviews. As a result he has not been able to deny in person the allegations that newspapers have made against him since his release.

O’Hare has worked with a number of religious charities as a result of contacts made through a nun who visited him in jail and campaigned for his release.

One religious group he has been helping is the Brothers of Charity in Galway. Patrick McGinley, the group’s director of services, said that last month O’Hare acted in a volunteer support role on a retreat for adults with learning difficulties.

McGinley said: “The Brothers of Charity sought and received three written references about Mr O’Hare. On foot of these three references Mr O’Hare acted in a volunteer support role on November 21, 22 and 23 as part of a pastoral care project. This work was fully supervised at all times by our experienced permanent staff.”

O’Hare was described by a person associated with the retreat as “very respectful and helpful” and it is understood that there were no problems related to his involvement.

Gallagher said that O’Hare has been to Lourdes “a few times” with handicapped children’s groups. “Even in jail, he said he would like to work with disadvantaged kids.”

Dessie O’Hare has a home in Moycullen, Co Galway, and also stays in a religious community near Dublin and visits his wife Clare and daughter Julie who live near Keady in Co Armagh.

One of the most notorious figures to emerge from the Troubles, O’Hare, 50, once boasted that he had killed 26 people in a paramilitary career that spanned the Provisional IRA, freelance terrorist activity in his native Co Armagh, and the INLA.

He and two accomplices were jailed in 1987 for the kidnapping and torture of John O’Grady, a millionaire dentist from Dublin. After ransom demands were not met O’Hare cut off two of O’Grady’s fingers with a hammer and chisel.

O’Grady escaped after a gun battle between the kidnappers and gardai. O’Hare received a 40-year sentence and was considered so dangerous that he was not released as part of the Good Friday agreement. He was released on licence last April and there has since been speculation that he is hanging around with Dublin criminals.

Art Hostage comments:

The best way for Mr Dessie O'Hare to demonstrate his sincerity is to facilitate the Stolen Vermeer from Boston being discovered in a confession box.

He clearly has connections to the Catholic Church and so i challenge Mr O'Hare to use his undoubted ability to see this happens sooner rather than later.

Within these turbulent times for the Irish Republican movement, what better way to reach out across the ocean, to America, a hand of friendship, showing grateful appreciation for the support of Irish Republicans during the Struggle, than for Dessie O'Hare and General Thomas Slab Murphy to be the chosen ones to send the Missive, (Vermeer's, "The Concert")

Sunday Life Home > News

RIRA Rambos!

By Chris Anderson and Stephen Gordon
17 December 2006

Dissident republicans are planning a spectacular 'ram raid' style attack on the security forces in south Armagh using an armoured van.

The Army has been hunting for the armour-plated van for the past fortnight on the back of intelligence that dissidents are planning to use it to force a mobile patrol vehicle off the road and launch a gun attack on the occupants.

Security sources say the van was moved into the area several weeks ago and believe it has been reinforced with metal panels to the front and sides.

"We need to find this van before it's used in any attack. We know it has been modified for an attack," said one source.

"Dissidents are flexing their muscles at the minute and all they need is to get lucky once. If they pull this off it will be a big boost to their morale."

The sources refused to rule out the possibility that hardliner Dessie O'Hare is involved in the 'ram raid' attack plan.

Following his release from jail earlier this year the ex-INLA terrorist - known as the Border Fox - has reportedly aligned himself with dissident republicans in south Armagh.

"Dessie O'Hare has a track record of this type of attack. In his INLA days he used a mechanical digger in a gun attack on the security forces," said a source.

"He is a diehard republican who is capable of anything."

It was reported last week that convicted kidnapper O'Hare was suspected of involvement in a gangland double-murder in Dublin, although the claims have been rubbished by a representative of O'Hare.

The security forces are currently on a heightened state of alert in the south Armagh area and there has been increased military helicopter activity in recent weeks.

Meanwhile, victims' group FAIR claims there are insufficient police officers in south Armagh to deal with the current dissident republican threat.

FAIR spokesman Willie Fraser said: "Dissident Republicans must be stopped in their tracks.

"At the minute Republicans can operate at will because there aren't enough PSNI officers on the ground. The rule of law must be applied in south Armagh before there is further loss of life."

Freed Provos are gangland 'guns for hire'



FORMER Provisional IRA men freed under the Good Friday Agreement are selling terrorist expertise to Dublin and Limerick criminal gangs, creating the most serious security crisis in the State since the IRA ceasefire in 1994.

Dublin Garda sources say organised crime has now reached its worst ever levels.

With further killings expected, high visibility armed patrols - involving gardai wearing body armour and carrying sub-machinguns - will, for the first time, be on duty over Christmas.

Gangland crime is again so serious that the Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern and the Minister for Justice, Michael McDowell, will hold a crisis meeting with Garda Commissioner Noel Conroy and Deputy Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy tomorrow. They will discuss the deployment of resources in the short to medium-term, the tightening of bail procedures and the need for speedier trials.

There is great public anger that 23 of the 24 known close associates of slain crime boss Martin 'Marlo' Hyland were on bail when he was murdered on Tuesday.

There was public revulsion when Hyland's killers also murdered an innocent young plumber, Anthony Campbell, who had witnessed the attack.

Hyland was known to be linked to the Provisional IRA, although the Taoiseach has said he does not believe the IRA was directly involved in his murder.

Gardai have indicated to Government that additional support staff is necessary to free officers on the ground


from subsequent office-bound duties; extra staff are also needed in the courts system to allow cases come to trial quicker.

But the current application of the bail laws, in particular, will be top of the agenda on Monday. In a 1996 referendum, provision was made for the courts to refuse bail to a person charged with a serious offence where it was reasonably considered necessary to prevent the commission of a serious offence.

Judges, however, are not taking a consistent line on the outcome of that referendum, something which is causing great concern at the heart of Government. Mr McDowell has criticised "soft judges" allowing hardened criminals out on bail despite strong Garda objections. Mr Conroy has said he supports the minister's views.

Although they have not yet publicly responded, judges do intend to make their views known "in their own time in their own way".

The discussions tomorrow between the country's most senior politicians and Garda will examine what gardai, the Director of Public Prosecutions and the judiciary can reasonably do to resolve this situation.

Public demand for immediate action is reflected in a Sunday Independent telephone poll of 500 homes, which has found an overwhelming majority (96 per cent) want the non-jury Special Criminal Court to deal with organised criminal gangs, with just 4 per cent opposed.

Indeed, the public is showing little appetite for the niceties of current due process. A significant 75 per cent would support the use of administrative detention orders, effectively internment, suggested by Fine Gael, and used in the Netherlands, to keep petty dealers off the streets while they are being investigated; only 25 per cent would oppose such an initiative.

The Sunday Independent can reveal that there have been at least seven attempted murders in the north-inner city in the last 13 months. Another criminal, Gerard Byrne, 26, was shot dead at the Irish Financial Services Centre on Wednesday.

The manner of Byrne's murder has also given rise to suspicions that a hired assassin was responsible. He was shot dead with a single round to the back of the head, and then shot a further four times, reminiscent of two assassinations carried out by a former republican-turned-assassin in the border area.

This assassin shot dead former INLA boss Dominic McGlinchey's wife Mary at her home in Dundalk, Co Louth in 1987 and subsequently shot another ex-INLA man, 'Mad' Nicky O'Hare, also in Dundalk in 2000.

Gardai now believe that paramilitary links to criminality in Dublin continues with a former 'officer commanding' of the Dublin IRA who still has access to armaments. The former 'OC' was stood down at the start of 2004 after Justice Minister Michael McDowell highlighted Provisional IRA involvement in hijackings and other major crimes in the Dublin Port area.

However, gardai say the man is surrounded by former IRA associates and has links to criminality, including drug and cigarette smuggling.

His predecessor as Dublin IRA 'OC' is now based in Alicante, from where he is using former IRA supply routes to ship drugs and cigarettes - often accompanied by weapons - to Dublin crime gangs.

One man in his late 40s, who was serving a long sentence on explosives-related charges - and who was released under the Good Friday Agreement - is also closely associated with one of the city's biggest heroin gangs.

This ex-prisoner organises 'muscle' for the drugs gang which is run by a younger, close relative, who had connections with Sinn Fein in Dublin, but was not known as an IRA member.

This man dropped his political connections as his drugs operations grew. However, his gang has links to both major criminals and other former republicans now involved in crime. Gardai say their link to the IRA has caused other gangs to stay clear of their operations, which mainly involve supplying heroin in bulk to smaller gangs.

Another Belfast man, now in his 50s - also released under the Good Friday Agreement - has been linked to some of the so-called tiger kidnappings, in which families are held hostage while key-holders are brought to post offices, banks or business premises where money is held.

His gang was responsible for the tiger kidnapping in Rochestown, Co Cork, in May last year in which a businessman and his family were held hostage. Two men were caught at the scene when the family was freed, but the Belfast man escaped. He was later arrested and questioned, but released for lack of evidence.

In the North, PSNI sources report that a considerable number of ex-republican and loyalist prisoners have become heavily involved in crime there, and are exclusively responsible for a rise of extortion rackets.

A recent PSNI report stated: "Typical demands are in the region of £50-£100 a month for small retail outlets, £1,000-£10,000 for small businesses and private individuals and there is no upper limit for demands on larger companies."

Another senior figure, who recently left the IRA in protest at Sinn Fein's proposals to support the PSNI and join the Northern Ireland Police Board, is running a massive tax evasion scam in the building industry in the North, the Republic and Britain.

Gardai continue to investigate claims that some less senior, but more militarily experienced ex-IRA men have also been hiring their services. A number of feud-related killings have shown levels of expertise previously unknown among Dublin criminals.

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