Wallace and Daly to contest Shannon Airport charges

Independent TDs Mick Wallace and Clare Daly are to fully contest charges they unlawfully entered a restricted zone at Shannon Airport last July.

Wallace and Daly to contest Shannon Airport charges

At Ennis District Court yesterday, Mr Wallace, 59, of Clontarf Rd, Clontarf, Dublin and Clare Daly, 46, of Elmwood Drive, Swords, Fingal, appeared concerning their alleged illegal entrance into a restricted area of Shannon Airport on July 22.

Solicitor for the two, Gareth Noble told Judge Patrick Durcan the matter “is to be fully contested” with the cases likely to last one day in the district court.

Insp Tom Kennedy said that the DPP has directed the matters be heard summarily in the district court. He said full disclosure in the case would be made to the defence this week.

In court, the two accused were joined by a large number of supporters including 80-year-old Margaretta D’Arcy who sat beside the two for the hearing. Ms D’Arcy has already served two periods in jail — one lasting three months — after refusing to sign a bond that she not enter restricted zones at Shannon after being found guilty of two separate illegal incursions at the airport.

Anti-war activists, Dr Ed Horgan and Niall Farrell were also present.

One other supporter was carrying a banner stating ‘US War Machine Out of Shannon’.

Speaking outside court, Ms Daly said: “We believe we have a responsibility as legislators and as citizens to uphold our neutrality and we have made every attempt inside the Dáil to highlight what has gone on.

She added: “We believe that there is very definitive evidence to say that our airport is being used to facilitate the US war machine and we don’t believe that it something in the interests of the Irish people.”

She said: “We will be rigorously defending this. While we were at Shannon, we don’t believe that we did anything wrong. We actually believe that we were doing what we should be doing.

Outside court, Mr Wallace said: “It should be noted that over two-and-a-half years, we went to great efforts to raise this issue in the Dáil.”

Judge Durcan adjourned the case to January 21 to fix a date for the case to be heard later in 2015.

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