Tuesday 21 August 2018

Volunteers target wrongful convictions

Kevin Gleeson whose grandfather Harry was wrongfully convicted 70 years ago speaking at the First ever ‘Wrongful Conviction Day’ at Griffith College, recognising work of Irish Innocence Project globally. Picture:Arthur Carron
Kevin Gleeson whose grandfather Harry was wrongfully convicted 70 years ago speaking at the First ever ‘Wrongful Conviction Day’ at Griffith College, recognising work of Irish Innocence Project globally. Picture:Arthur Carron
Wayne O'Connor

Wayne O'Connor

The world's first Wrongful Conviction day was celebrated by members of the Innocence Project, a group looking to clear the names of people falsely found guilty of serious crimes.

The Irish Innocence Project, run by staff and students at Griffith College, is working on three cases, including one cold case relating to a murder 74 years ago.

Harry Gleeson, a farm manager in Tipperary, was hanged in Mountjoy Prison in April 1941, five months after being accused and eventually sentenced of the murder of his neighbour Mary 'Molly' McCarthy.

Harry's grandnephew Kevin Gleeson is working with the Innocence Project to prove he was not guilty of the crime.

"Crucial evidence was withheld during the trial," said Kevin.

"A firearms register that has clearly been tampered with was never produced in court even though the judge sought and requested it," he added.

They have also found a number of alibis showing that Harry did not murder Molly and forensic evidence that could be crucial in clearing Harry's name.

"That was a massive step for us in the process of clearing his name. Minister Shatter ordered a review and independent senior counsel Shane Murphy is reviewing the case and we are hopeful that we will see something from that in the next month or two," said Kevin.

Irish Independent

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