Action needed on gang violence

first_imgVanishing Ireland podcast documenting interviews with people over 70’s, looking for volunteers to share their stories  by Kathy [email protected] up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up LIMERICK TD Niall Collins is calling on Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald to come to Limerick to speak with frontline gardaí and business and community groups about their fears of gangland violence returning to the city.The Fianna Fáil Justice Spokesperson revealed that there is growing concern in Limerick’s business and tourism sectors about how the city’s image could be affected by the recent shooting of Christy Keane in the University of Limerick.He told the Limerick Post: “I’ve been contacted by people involved in business, hospitality and tourism in Limerick and they are very concerned about the image of Limerick.“The Limerick brand has recovered strongly from the height of the gangland activity, and they are worried that the city’s image will slip back if that activity was to return.”Deputy Collins said he has also spoken to gardaí who say that garda resources across the county have suffered as so many members of the force have been deployed to investigate the Keane shooting.“The official line coming from An Garda Siochána is that they have enough resources to deal with this, but the facts are different. We lost over 100 gardaí in Limerick in the last three years, that’s a big drop.“Unfortunately, response times have been affected. A lot of gardaí have been sucked into the investigation into the Christy Keane shooting, and that has affected other parts of county Limerick. It’s been said to me that gardaí have been pulled from various parts of the county,” he explained.Deputy Collins added: “Looking at Limerick’s former gangland experience in the early noughties, the government put in strong legislation and resources, but now unfortunately the resource side is not there.”Meanwhile, gang boss Christy Keane has been transferred to Cork University Hospital, where he remains under armed garda protection.A man and a woman who were arrested in connection with the shooting, which took place on Monday June 29, have been released without charge. Linkedin TAGSchristy keaneDeputy Niall CollinsJustice Minister Frances Fitzgeraldlimerick Facebook Limerick Artist ‘Willzee’ releases new Music Video – “A Dream of Peace” Limerick’s National Camogie League double header to be streamed live Previous article80% increase in patients on trolleysNext articlePlan has potential to make Cork link a reality John Keogh Print WhatsAppcenter_img Twitter RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR WATCH: “Everyone is fighting so hard to get on” – Pat Ryan on competitive camogie squads NewsAction needed on gang violenceBy John Keogh – July 9, 2015 646 Limerick Ladies National Football League opener to be streamed live Email Advertisement Predictions on the future of learning discussed at Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival last_img read more

Ex-NYPD Cop Gets 6 Years for Long Island Burglary Spree

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York An ex-New York City police detective was sentenced Thursday to six years in prison for his role in a burglary ring that stole more than $10 million in cash and property from Long Island homes and businesses over a four-year span.At Central Islip federal court in 2014, Rafael Astacio, 43, of Copiague, had pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit interstate transportation of stolen property and filing a fraudulent tax return.“By victimizing the very same people he took an oath to serve and protect, the defendant compounded his criminal acts,” said Robert Capers, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.Astacio was arrested four years ago as part of a five-man team that broke into 10 homes and three dozen businesses during their spree between 2009 and 2012, authorities have said.The crew used sledge hammers, wire cutters, blow torches and crowbars, as well as police scanners and cell phone jammers, authorities explained. In addition, the crew staked out potential victims to determine when they would be out of their homes and businesses. Astacio’s assignments were to be the lookout, to monitor a police scanner and to transport the stolen merchandise across state lines so it could be sold on the black market.In handing down the ex-cop’s sentence, U.S. District Judge Joseph Bianco also ordered Astacio to pay nearly $2 million in restitution to his victims.Nassau County prosecutors worked with federal authorities on the case.“While most police officers serve with integrity and honor, former Detective Astacio broke his oath and the law when he conspired with others to steal millions of dollars’ worth of property and cash from homes and businesses in our area,” Nassau District Attorney Madeline Singas said. “Thanks to the collaborative efforts of local and federal law enforcement partners, this crooked cop was caught and successfully prosecuted, and he will never tarnish the badge again.”last_img read more

Experts, House factions suggest lower presidential nomination threshold

first_imgSeveral factions at the House of Representatives as well as political experts have suggested lowering or eliminating the vote threshold for political parties to nominate presidential candidates.Article 222 of the 2017 Elections Law states that a political party or coalition of parties must have secured at least 20 percent of the seats at the House of Representatives or 25 percent of the popular vote in the 2014 elections to nominate a presidential candidate in the 2019 elections.The same type of provision has been included in a draft dated May 6 to revise the Elections Law in preparation for the next elections. The draft was prepared by House Commission II, which oversees home affairs, and the House Expertise Board.During a hearing by the commission on Wednesday, some experts recommended a reduction of the threshold to facilitate more presidential candidates.Political expert Valina Singka Subekti of the University of Indonesia questioned the draft for maintaining the threshold. She suggested that the House eliminate it altogether, as the Constitution only mandated that political parties endorse presidential and vice-presidential candidates, with no mention of a threshold.“Indonesia has a presidential nomination threshold while many other democratic countries do not,” she said. The presidential nomination threshold in Indonesia was introduced in 2004, when the figure was set at 15 percent, equal to 20 percent of House seats. Five years later, the House raised the bar to 20 percent of the seats or 25 percent of the popular vote.Valina said the 2004 presidential election was the ideal presidential election, with five candidate pairs running: Wiranto-Salahuddin Wahid, Megawati Sukarnoputri-Hasyim Muzadi, Amien Rais-Siswono Yudo Husodo, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono-Jusuf Kalla and Hamzah Haz-Agum Gumelar.”We have experienced a presidential election in which many pairs were participating. This is nothing new. At that time, the political parties and constituents were happy, as they could channel their aspirations and promote their best candidates,” she said.Read also: Civil group challenges legislative threshold at courtCentre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) executive director Philips J. Vermonte echoed Valina’s concern, calling on the House to reduce the threshold.He went on to say that a higher threshold had resulted in polarization among the people, as seen in the presidential elections of 2014 and 2019. A survey found that Indonesians became more polarized than ever based on their preferred presidential candidates as they only had two candidate pairs.Philips suggested that the election should have “at least three or four candidate pairs.”Parties in the government coalition are divided over the threshold, with the NasDem Party, the National Awakening Party (PKB) and the United Development Party (PPP) suggesting a lower threshold. They are the three parties that garnered lower shares of the popular vote than the other members of the coalition in the 2019 election.“We’re sure that we will have two pairs running head to head again if it’s 20 percent. If it’s 15 percent, four to five [candidate pairs] may participate. More pairs means more options for the people,” NasDem House faction chairman Ahmad Ali said.On the other hand, the ruling Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) and the Golkar Party, which were in the first and third position in last year’s election, endorsed the same threshold. Meanwhile, the runner-up in the 2019 election, the Gerindra Party, remained undecided.Three parties outside the ruling coalition expected the threshold to be between 10 and 15 percent. The Prosperous Justice Party (PKS) proposed a lower threshold, although it later stated that it was fine with keeping the current threshold.PKS House faction chairman Jazuli Juwaini said a lower threshold could allow for greater diversity of ideas during the presidential election. “We hope there are at least three pairs, [so there will be] no polarization, like in the 2019 election.”Commission II chairman Ahmad Doli Kurnia said the draft was still very much open for change, because factions were still divided over it. He went on to say that the draft, including the provision on the presidential nomination threshold, might change to accommodate several opinions.“The experts’ opinion will also be one of our considerations in formulating the bill,” he said.Topics :last_img read more