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Margaretta D'Arcy

Peace activist back in prison

Eighty-year-old peace activist, Margaretta D’Arcy  was brought to Limerick Prison on Wednesday  after she presented herself at a garda station in Galway.

On June 24, Ms D’Arcy of 10 St Brigid’s Place, Woodquay, Galway and Niall Farrell, a 60-year-old man with an address at Ballynacloghy, Maree, Galway were both found guilty of interfering with the proper use of Shannon Airport on September 1, 2013, at a sitting of Ennis District Court.

The defendants were sentenced to two weeks in prison, which was suspended on condition that they enter a bond to stay away from restricted areas of Shannon Airport, something Ms D’Arcy refused to do.

Speaking on Wednesday, Ms D’Arcy’s son Finn Arden said, “She brought herself to the garda station in Galway at 11am this morning and then she was carted off in a garda car to Limerick.”

Speaking about his mother’s frame of mind on Wednesday, he said, “Gardaí came to the house earlier and they wanted to pick her up early so there wouldn’t be any press. Me and another friend walked her down to the garda station, she was slightly apprehensive and also fairly exuberant.”

He said his mother is “fairly adamant” about the course of action she is taking.

While he would rather not see her being locked up he said it is her own decision; “I’d prefer her not to go, but she’s got her own mind. I’m old enough to look after myself now,” he joked.

He said she hadn’t found her previous spell in prison too difficult and said that she had “quite liked the rest and relaxation”. Mr Arden also said that his mother plans to go on a fast while in prison in solidarity with prisoners in other parts of the world.

John Lannon of peace group Shannonwatch said that its protests against the US military use of Shannon Airport will be continuing while it is planning a protest at Limerick prison. “We have our peaceful demonstrations on the second Sunday of every month at Shannon and I expect that we will have a peaceful demonstration outside Limerick Prison at 5pm on Friday.”

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