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Why I feel sorry for gang wives

LOVE/HATE actress Aoibhinn McGinnity has "massive sympathy" for gangland wives and girlfriends.

The 25-year-old told the Herald she feels sorry for the partners of Irish criminals, who end up in the wrong circles and become too scared to escape.

The Monaghan native, who returned to TV screens last night in the new series of the RTE crime drama, told the Herald she can only imagine how difficult it must be for the real women in notorious gangs.

"I think when you can lie to yourself then you can lie to everyone else about what's going on around you -- you put the blinkers on and you keep going by adapting to dangerous situations," Aoibhinn said.

"It is silly, but it's easy for us to look in on the outside and judge, these women obviously have low self esteem and don't have the guts to stand up for themselves or get out.

"Even if they did, what would they do? They might not have any family or friends outside these gang groups and wouldn't be safe."

Aoibhinn, who lives in Dublin, plays the leading role of Trish in the hit mini-series.

"It's much grittier this time around, aside from the new characters, the old ones are turning even more evil and twisted," she said.

See Pat Stacey on Page 31