Tuesday 27 September 2016

Thugs who disrespect law must learn to fear it

Published 02/10/2015 | 02:30

'A strong signal has been sent out by Judge Teehan. The appeal courts must ensure, if necessary, that his stance is firmly supported'
'A strong signal has been sent out by Judge Teehan. The appeal courts must ensure, if necessary, that his stance is firmly supported'

The words 'cruel', 'cowardly' and 'savage' have become too familiar in our courtrooms as criminal gangs make the lives of victims a living hell. Yesterday, Judge Tom Teehan struck back when he gave the seven men responsible for what he saw as an "evil, well-planned crime" that caused "catastrophic changes" sentences ranging from 12 to 20 years.

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In total, that amounts to 105 years in prison. What the defenceless Corcoran family had to endure at the hands of these heartless thugs is genuinely hard to imagine.

Suffice it to say, as was remarked on in court: "One thing that is most clear in the 999 recording is the terrified screams of the children."

This gang is notorious and has gained a reputation for being ruthless and remorseless. Mark and Emma Corcoran will struggle to erase the horror of the night their home was invaded.

The unspeakable fear and horror of their three young daughters - visited on them in the sanctuary of their home - as their parents were brutally abused, needed to be addressed.

Judge Teehan gave a strong and eloquent response to this in the severity of the sentence.

Every right imaginable was trampled under foot by these criminals. He said no human being, of any age, should ever have to witness such a violent scene.

Much of what was threatened is too sickening to even comprehend. If terrorising little girls is what it takes to pass as a hardened criminal these days, then the longer they have to think about their "heroics" under lock and key, the better.

A strong signal has been sent out by Judge Teehan. The appeal courts must ensure, if necessary, that his stance is firmly supported.

It is timely too, that tougher sentencing, which is being introduced in new legislation today, will make it more difficult for people who carry out repeat burglaries to get bail. Those who have no respect for the law must be given good reason to fear it.

Irish Independent

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