Sunday 21 January 2018

Ministers flooded by abusive calls after Siptu leak

NEW NUMBER: Dermot Ahern. Photo: Tom Burke
NEW NUMBER: Dermot Ahern. Photo: Tom Burke

Craig Hughes

THE confidential mobile telephone numbers of senior government ministers were released on the internet yesterday -- leading to an avalanche of abusive phone calls and texts to members of the Cabinet.

The list of numbers was originally compiled by Siptu, which sent the list to all subscribers to one of its magazines. It was then copied by far-left elements, who posted the politicians' numbers to the private accounts of activists dotted around the country.

Following the 48-hour telephone attack, a number of government ministers, including Justice Minister Dermot Ahern, who is to step aside from politics at the next election, changed their mobile phone numbers.

Another hacker recounted details of three conversations he claimed to have had with Finance Minister Brian Lenihan on Friday night, which ended in a heated discussion regarding partition.

The Sunday Independent has learned that Siptu circulated the numbers of every member of the Oireachtas in an email to all of its members who subscribe to their magazine Liberty.

The email from Siptu urged members to contact their local representatives and urge them not to cut the minimum wage.

However, the numbers soon found their way into other hands and went viral.

The list was posted on the popular social networking site Facebook and a number of other websites.

Among the senior figures whose alleged mobile numbers were posted were Mr Lenihan; Brendan Smith; Mr Ahern; Dick Roche; Eamon O Cuiv; Mary Coughlan; Eamon Ryan; Mary Harney; John Gormley; Mary Hanafin; and Martin Mansergh.

It was not just government ministers who received abusive texts and calls.

Various members of the opposition parties as well as MEPs also received abusive messages.

Sunday Independent

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News