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Shell to Sea campaigner Maura Harrington was arrested in Belmullet on Friday afternoon and jailed for 10 days in Mountjoy prison for the non-payment of a court fine of €300.
It is thought that the jailing relates to a 2012 protest attempting to block construction of the disputed development. Ms Harrington has continuously opposed the Corrib gas project due to health and safety concerns, environmental damage and the giveaway of Ireland’s natural resources to private corporations.
The jailing comes on the same day as Vermillion Energy — who owns an 18.5% share in Corrib gas — released sales figures of $17 million (€15m) from Corrib for the first three months of 2016. At this rate the Corrib partners — Shell, Statoil and Vermillion — stand to make sales of $7.35bn (€6.44bn) over a 20-year field lifespan.
It is widely accepted that no, or minimal, tax will be paid by the developers of the Corrib gas project to the Irish State. Former managing director of the Corrib gas project, Brian Ó Catháin previously stated in 2010 that “Corrib will never pay tax”, while a Vermilion investor profile estimated it would be seven years before any tax is paid. The hypocrisy of this is evident — Maura goes to jail to for protecting our environment and resources while the multinationals are invited in to plunder. We are calling on yet another government to take back our natural resources that have been willfully given away by politicians and to ensure that no community has to suffer what we have for the past 15 years.
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