'Public's outrage will force change in bail laws'
Published 07/10/2015 | 02:30
Intense public anger over crime will force the Government to change bail laws that are not fit for purpose, according to the solicitor who represented home invasion victims Mark and Emma Corcoran.
Kieran Cleary will urge "everyone to work together" when he addresses the Save Our Community rally in Thurles tomorrow night.
But the respected lawyer will also stress that if harnessed effectively, public anger over crime will force Government to change legislation much quicker.
"I will be urging people to seek a solution instead of expressing criticism - because we must all work together," said Mr Cleary.
"I firmly believe that you need the community working with the gardaí because the gardaí cannot do it without the assistance of the public.
"The country is up in arms over this problem and there lies a solution because it will convince the Minister for Justice and the Government to change legislation, especially with regard to bail, quickly," he added.
"Bail for repeat offenders is a huge problem, with most crime being committed by people on bail."
The organisers of the public meeting being held in the Anner Hotel said they have been receiving "huge interest" and estimate that attendance could be as high as 2,000.
"People have been in contact from up to 50 miles away to confirm that they will be here.
"There has been huge interest from the public and the media and we are now expecting anything up to 2,000 people," said Robert O'Shea, the chairman of the organising committee.
Mr O'Shea and a number of other victims from around the village of Littleton near Thurles launched a campaign against rural crime in August.
"Through contact with victims across the country, we realised that this is a national problem and decided to organise this meeting to discuss the escalating crime levels and tease out possible solutions," he added.
"All of the organisers have been the victims of crime and we have insisted that this is a non-political forum - we want to bring people together to force something to be done to stamp out this problem."
Senior garda officers, including an Assistant Commissioner, are also expected to address the meeting.