Manuela fund founder resigns over concert cash
THE organisers of a fundraising concert in memory of tragic Swiss schoolgirl Manuela Riedo are rejecting criticism of the event by the founder of the Manuela Riedo Foundation.
Basle-based publican Brendan McGuinness said he was resigning from the foundation he helped set up in the aftermath of the murder of Manuela in Galway in October 2007.
Manuela (17) was just 72 hours in Galway when she was attacked and murdered by local man Gerald Barry (28). He is now serving life in prison.
Mr McGuinness claimed there was less than €10,000 in the foundation's accounts, despite reading that the Galway concert raised over €50,000.
"That €50,000, it has not come into either of the foundation's bank accounts. It never came in . . . why? That's a question you have to ask the organisers in Galway," he told RTE Radio's 'Liveline'.
But it has emerged that relations have become strained between Mr McGuinness and Hans-Peter and Arlette Riedo, parents of Manuela, because of their support for the concert.
The parents, who came to Galway for the event, also rejected threats by Mr McGuinness to take legal steps to prevent the concert taking place.
Yesterday, concert organiser Shane Lennon revealed that the concert accounts had been furnished last week to Mr and Mrs Riedo and it was their express wish that the money raised would be spent in Ireland on deserving causes.