Two in court over Shannon protest

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Niall Farrell leaving Limerick Courthouse [Picture: Press 22]
TWO anti war protesters have given undertakings not to trespass at Shannon Airport after they entered the runway without permission.

TWO anti war protesters have given undertakings not to trespass at Shannon Airport after they entered the runway without permission.

Margaretta D’Arcy, aged 79, of Bridgets Place, Woodquay, Galway and Niall Farrell, aged 60, of Ballynacloghy, Maree, Oranmore, County Galway were brought before Limerick Court following an incident yesterday afternoon.

Insp Tom Kennedy said gardai were alerted at around 3.45pm after the pair were observed on the runway by Airport Police.

He said D’Arcy and Farrell were wearing orange boiler suits and were carrying placards outlining their opposition to the war in Syria.

Insp Kennedy said gardai and the authorities at Shannon were treating the matter very seriously and he said the actions of the defendants had created an “immense danger” to themselves and to those using the airport.

While Insp kennedy accepted that no planes were due to land at or depart from Shannon around the time the of the protest he told the court that Shannon is the designated airport for aircraft which experience difficulties over the North Atlantic.

Both defendants told the court they wished to represent themselves despite being informed by Judge Eugene O’Kelly that they were entitled to have legal representation.

At one point during the proceedings the judge threatened to hold Mr Farrell in contempt of court if he did not stop making political statements in relation to alleged use of Shannon Airport by military aircraft en-route to the Middle East.

Both defendants were granted bail and are due to appear in court in Ennis on September 11, next.