Thursday 20 June 2019

Security measures for McGrane funeral criticised

There has been criticism of the heavy security presence at last week's funeral of Séamus McGrane, who died from a suspected heart attack while serving an 11 ½-year prison sentence for directing terrorism.

He passed away on Saturday, 25 May; and his remains were removed on the following Tuesday morning to St. Peter's Church, Dromiskin for Mass at 11am, followed by burial in Brid-A-Crinn cemetery.

Around Dromiskin village, at the church and again at the graveyard, there were many heavily-armed gardaí in attendance, backed by the force's Armed Response Unit and a helicopter.

Dromiskin and surrounding areas Neighbourhood Watch described the security presence as 'an absolute disgrace'.

During his trial at the Special Criminal Court in 2017, Mr McGrane, of Little Road, Dromiskin, was also convicted of IRA membership.

The court heard he plotted to carry out an explosion during the State visit of Prince Charles in 2015.

At the trial the court was told that in the run-up to the visit he discussed an operation involving explosives.

Séamus McGrane was convicted of directing the activities of an unlawful organisation, styling itself the Irish Republican Army, otherwise Óglaigh na hÉireann, otherwise the IRA, between the dates of 19 April and 13 May, 2015.

He was also convicted of membership of the IRA between 18 January, 2010, and 13 May, 2015.

Passing sentence, presiding judge Ms Justice Isobel Kennedy had said that it was "a most serious offence".

Mr McGrane is survived by his wife, Bernadette; children, grandchildren, relatives and friends.

The Argus