Archive | January, 2010

LONDON: PUBLIC ALERT: Police Appeal Over Missing 11-Year-Old Boy

31 Jan

LONDON POLICE APPEAL OVER MISSING 11-YEAR-OLD BOY:

Police are growing increasingly concerned for an 11-year-old boy who has been missing since Wednesday.

Ibraheem Shah took a train from Southall, where he lives with his foster family, to Paddington Station in London.

He had told friends he was going to visit family and had left with no bag, money or a change of clothes.

Police say he then took the London Underground to Stratford and left Stratford tube station alone between 1830 and 1900.

Ealing Borough Commander Ian Jenkins said: "At the moment we do not know where Ibraheem is or what has happened to him.

"From CCTV taken from Paddington Station at 5.30pm he is seen walking close to a black man who we would very much like to contact us as he may be able to help us piece together where Ibraheem was going and where he may be.

"I would like to appeal to Ibraheem directly: you are not in any trouble, we just need to confirm that you are safe and well. Please get in touch with the police or your carers so that we can check you are ok."

Ibraheem, who is around 5ft tall and of Pakistani origin, was last seen wearing his Featherstone School uniform which is a blue tie, dark blazer with school badge, a white shirt, black trousers and shoes.

Over the top he was wearing a blue Parka jacket with a fur-trimmed hood and he had on a blue and white woollen hat with ‘Manchester’ across it.

If you have any information or have seen Ibraheem contact police on 0208 358 0100 or call Missing People on 0500 700 700.

UK: Young Children Being Indoctrinated By ‘Jihad Training’ : Claim

31 Jan

YOUNG CHILDREN IN BRITAIN INDOCTRINATED BY ‘JIHAD TRAINING’:

Some young children in Britain are being indoctrinated to hate non-Muslims and champion a holy war, a documentary says.

"No child is ever too young to be started off on Jihad training," states one document recovered by police from the North West’s Counter Terrorist Unit (CTU) during raids.

CTU officers, interviewed by the BBC’s Inside Out team for a special programme, show the document and a film they recovered of two children aged about three and six playing with a pistol and Kalashnikov rifle.

The CTU police say its discoveries, made separately, are evidence of attempts to radicalise youngsters.

The footage, which police believe was filmed in Pakistan, was uncovered on the hard drive of a suspect’s computer – though investigators have not revealed when the material was seized.

The video shows a girl and young boy playing with guns, which police believe are real.

"What do you do with the weapon?" asks a man’s voice. He answers his own question: "I want to kill the infidels [non-believers]."

A senior CTU officer, who cannot be identified for security reasons, tells the programme makers: "We believe this was filmed abroad. We have no idea who the children are. We were shocked to find it at the house. We have no reason to believe this is faked. The guns are real."

David Thompson, Assistant Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, said the majority of the Muslim population supported the police’s counter-terror operations in the region.

He told the BBC: "My view is [that] the majority of the community across the board see the threat that we’re dealing with and are hugely supportive."

Adolescent Substance Use In South-East Ireland & Mental Health Issues

31 Jan

ADOLESCENT SUBSTANCE USE IN SOUTH_EAST IRELAND

Adolescent substance use in south-east Ireland by Jean Long

Van Hout completed a comprehensive study of drug and alcohol use among adolescents in the south east of Ireland from the standpoint of young people, parents and service providers. This article presents a summary of the findings in relation to each of the three groups, as published in separate journal articles.

Substance use reported by adolescents

The author completed semi-structured interviews with a random sample of 220 children aged 15–17 years from schools and youth training centres in the area.1 Just under one-quarter of the respondents reported ever using an illicit drug, and the majority who had tried drugs were boys. Almost all said that they had been offered drugs and that drugs were easily available in urban areas. The majority believed that drug use would increase in the future in the area. They said that neither the police nor the schools took action to stop dealing or drug use in public. Drugs were purchased over the phone and could even be delivered to the schoolyard.

Cannabis was the most common drug used and, excluding alcohol and volatile inhalants, was the first drug used by the majority. A small number reported that ecstasy or amphetamine was their first drug. Alcohol was usually consumed alongside illicit drugs. Cannabis was perceived as a safe drug, and cocaine, heroin and speed as dangerous drugs. Most took drugs because they were curious or bored, or their friends were taking them. Some said that drugs helped them to relax or gave them a buzz. The majority were aged between 10 and 15 years when they took their first drug, which was usually given by a friend or older sibling; the initial occasion was unplanned; and almost half felt ill after taking the drug. A small number reported that they clubbed together with friends to buy drugs.

Some respondents reported that they controlled their drug use to prevent addiction, overdose, or other physical symptoms. Very few were worried about the legal consequences of illicit drug use. Some of the older respondents reported that they had ceased illicit drug use because drugs had lost their appeal, or they had experienced negative effects, or they preferred alcohol. The respondents who had never taken drugs gave the following reasons for their decision: drugs are dangerous, they have side effects, and/or drug use could be difficult to control. Some respondents were afraid of their parents’ reaction if they were discovered using drugs.

Parents’ views

To ascertain parents’ views on youth substance use, the author conducted semi-structured interviews with a convenience sample of parents (34 mothers and 21 fathers) of adolescent children attending three rural schools.2 The interviews included questions relating to the parents’ perceptions of youth drug and alcohol use (in terms of both recreational and problematic use in their communities), drug availability, perceptions of risk, types of settings for adolescent substance use, service provision and drug information. The parents were not questioned about their own children but about youth in general.

The results suggest that the parents were concerned about the increased exposure to drugs among youth in local rural communities. The majority of parents were aware of youth alcohol use, they were concerned about all drugs, they were not aware of specific differences in drug-related risk, and they had difficulty comprehending harm-reduction principles. Most parents recognised the need for greater parental monitoring of their children’s free time and improved parent–child discourse, as well as the need for more widespread drug education, and the provision of visible and accessible services and support for the families of problem substance users.

The author concluded that life in contemporary rural Ireland is influenced by dominant social changes in terms of the normalisation of alcohol and drug use in youth subcultures. This is facilitated by increasing fragmentation of traditional rural family norms and values, emerging acceptability of alcohol and drug use in recreation time and the increasing availability of alcohol and drugs.

Service providers’ views

The author also explored the perspectives of 78 service providers in the area on youth substance use and current service provision.3 The service providers worked in youth, community, addiction, education or health services.

As did the parents and the adolescents, the service providers believed that illicit drugs and drug use had become a normal aspect of society in the area. They said that use had increased because the availability of drugs had increased, young people had more disposable income and greater freedom, and their free time was not monitored by parents. They believed that young people had a positive attitude to alcohol use and a facilitating attitude to drug use, and that this encouraged experimentation. In addition, children had more knowledge about the effects of individual drugs and the effects of mixing them. Drug use included use of solvents and inappropriate use of prescription medication. The service providers said that teachers were trying to control drug dealing and use in the schoolyard, whereas the young people felt that there was not enough control in the yard.

The service providers reported that children are introduced to alcohol at a young age and observe their parents and siblings drinking to excess. They cited poor parental monitoring and unstructured leisure time as contributing factors. Young people were observed purchasing and sharing drugs among close peers or best friends. Drug and alcohol use occurred in fields, on the streets or at friends’ houses. Children as young as 10 years were known to use drugs, and boys were more likely than girls to experiment. Young people had developed an informal hierarchy of drugs, according to their perceived level of harm, with heroin at the top of the scale and cannabis at the bottom. Young people thought that heroin was safe if smoked and that cannabis was as safe as cigarettes.

According to the service providers, most children experiment with drug use and mature out of it, but children experiencing family problems and disruption are more likely to develop problem drug or alcohol use. The providers also pointed out that adolescent diagnostics and services in the south east of Ireland are based on adult models

(Jean Long)

1. Van Hout MC (2009) Drug and alcohol use among rural Irish adolescents: a brief exploratory study. Drugs and Alcohol Today, 9(1): 20–26.

2. Van Hout MC (2009) Youth alcohol and drug use in rural Ireland: parents’ views. Rural and Remote Health, 9: 1171.

3. Van Hout MC (2009) An illustrative picture of Irish youth substance use. Journal of Alcohol & Drug Education, 53(1): 7–14.

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Physical activity as part of adolescent addiction treatment by Jean Long

Van Hout assessed the perception of social context and activity scales of adolescent substance abusers following participation in a physical activity intervention during residential drug treatment.1 The increase in perception of social context value was measured by increased social interaction, group identification, trust, co-operation and social growth. The increase in perception of activity value was measured by increased enjoyment, self-efficacy, skill acquisition and confidence. The sample (n=47) was assessed on entry to treatment, on completion of treatment, at six weeks after treatment and at six months after treatment, using mean, standard deviation, and t-tests.

Participants were aged between 12 and 20 years, and 63% were male. In general, the overall mean scores for perception of social context value increased between entry to and completion of the treatment program decreased marginally six weeks after treatment, and returned to baseline levels after six months in aftercare. A small significant positive difference was recorded between entry and six weeks after treatment

p = 0.04).

Perception of activity value increased between entry to and completion of the treatment program, increased again at six weeks after treatment, and decreased to below the baseline level six months following discharge. Positive significant differences were recorded between entry and six weeks after treatment (p = 0.02).

This research illustrates the positive potential of physical activity as part of an adolescent residential treatment programme, and in the first six weeks following discharge. It notes that it was difficult to sustain the long-term benefits, and suggests that this aspect of the intervention needs to be explored.

(Jean Long)

1. Van Hout MC (2008) Perception of social context and activity following participation in a physical fitness intervention during residential adolescent addiction treatment. American Journal of Recreation Therapy, 7(4): 27–45.

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Mental health and young people: a review of CBT-based interventions by Martin Keane

The recently published results of a systematic review shed some light on what works in reducing or preventing mental health problems among young people.1 One of the questions addressed in the review was:

Are secondary school-based mental health interventions based on cognitive behavioural techniques effective in preventing or alleviating depression, anxiety and suicidality among young people?

Following an extensive search of a number of relevant databases, repeated screening of thousands of studies and an assessment of the quality of potential studies for synthesis, 17 randomised controlled trials (RCTs) were included in the final synthesis. All the interventions were based on techniques derived from cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and were delivered to either small groups or entire classes. The authors point out that the CBT approach is primarily based on Beck’s cognitive model of depression, which focuses primarily on the relationships between cognitions, feeling and behaviours.2

All the studies included in the review evaluated CBT interventions for effectiveness in reducing or preventing the onset of the symptoms of a range of emotional disorders. None presented data on the impact of CBT interventions on suicidal thoughts or behaviours, and none stated that suicide prevention had been an explicit aim of the intervention. The interventions taught students a variety of techniques for problem solving and coping, including assertiveness training, relaxation, negotiation, positive thinking and communication. Interventions aimed at reducing anxiety focused on social skills training.

Findings on effectiveness of CBT interventions

Impact of CBT on depression outcomes

CBT interventions were effective in reducing depressive symptoms up to three months after the intervention had finished. The effect remained positive, although insignificant, at six- and twelve-month follow-up. Universal interventions were shown to improve depressive symptoms up to four weeks after delivery. Indicated interventions were shown to improve depressive symptoms up to six months after delivery. No evidence of harm was detected in any of the analysis. Interventions delivered by a member of school staff were found to be effective, while those delivered by external providers were not. Interventions of 10 or more sessions were effective up to three months post intervention. Shorter interventions, up to nine sessions, were found to be ineffective.

Impact of CBT on anxiety outcomes

CBT interventions were found to be effective in reducing anxiety immediately post intervention, and at six-month follow-up. There was insufficient data to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions delivered by internal school staff. Interventions delivered by external providers were not shown to be effective in reducing anxiety. Interventions of up to nine sessions were effective at six-month follow-up. Interventions of 10 sessions or more were found to be effective immediately post-intervention.

Recommendations for practice

The authors make a number of recommendations that may be useful to those wishing to implement preventive mental health programmes in secondary schools. Providers should consider the use of CBT-based interventions for reducing depression and anxiety levels. Given the uncertainties about the long-term benefits of universal interventions, efforts to prevent depression in young people might best be directed towards indicated interventions. Providers of preventive mental health services to young people should:

consider using adequately trained and supported school staff to provide CBT-based interventions to young people;

consider providing programmes of 10 or more weeks’ duration; and

be aware of, and consider monitoring, potential adverse effects (i.e. stigma associated with mental health problems).

Providers of preventive mental health services to young people who are considering providing universal, rather than indicated interventions should evaluate the impact of the intervention on high- and low-risk groups. Providers implementing indicated interventions may wish to monitor any potential adverse effects due to stigma associated with mental health problems. While no studies of indicated prevention reported adverse outcomes, such as bullying, The authors warn of ‘the potential risk that participants identified as receiving such interventions may suffer adversely due to the social stigma attached to suffering from an emotional or mental health problem’.

(Martin Keane)

1. Kavanagh J, Oliver S, Caird J, Tucker H, Greaves A, Harden A et al. (2009) Inequalities and the mental health of young people: a systematic review of secondary school-based cognitive behavioural interventions. London: University of London, EPPI-Centre.

2. Beck AT (1974) The development of depression: a cognitive model. In: Friedman R and Katz M (eds) Psychology of depression: contemporary theory and research. Washington, DC: Winston-Wiley. pp. 3–27.

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(Source: Drug-net-Ireland: Issue 32 Winter 2009: www.hrb.ie ).

UK: Doctor DEATH Who Prescribed “Potentially Hazardous” Drug Levels To Elderly Left Free To Practise

31 Jan

DOCTOR DEATH WHO PRESCRIBED “POTENTIALLY HAZARDOUS” TO ELDERLY PATIENTS LEFT FREE TO PRACTISE:

A doctor who prescribed "potentially hazardous" levels of drugs to elderly patients who later died has escaped being struck off, to the disgust of their relatives.

A fitness to practise panel at the General Medical Council found Dr Jane Barton made a catalogue of failings in her treatment of 12 patients at a Hampshire hospital.

The doctor issued "excessive, inappropriate and potentially hazardous" drugs at Gosport War Memorial Hospital between January 1996 and November 1999, the panel ruled.

Robert Wilson, 74, Eva Page, 87, Alice Wilkie, 81, Gladys Richards, 91, Leslie Pittock, 82, Elsie Lavender, 83, Ruby Lake, 84, Enid Spurgeon, 92, Geoffrey Packman, 67, Elsie Devine, 88, Arthur Cunningham, 79, and Jean Stevens, 73, all died on wards where Dr Barton worked as a clinical assistant.

Panel chairman Andrew Reid said: "There have been instances when Dr Barton’s acts and omissions have put patients at increased risk of premature death."

But Dr Barton will be allowed to continue working as a doctor despite being found guilty of serious professional misconduct.

The patients’ families have reacted furiously to the decision and walked out of the hearing in central London in disgust.

Iain Wilson, son of Robert Wilson, was the first to leave the room, shouting: "You should hang your head in shame."

Speaking outside the GMC building, he said: "People (in Gosport) cannot believe that she’s not already been struck off."

Ann Reeves, the daughter of Elsie Devine, 88, said: "It’s a total disgrace. What does GMC stand for? Gross Medical Cover-up and nothing more. I’m in total shock."

She called for a public inquiry and said some 200 letters of support for Dr Barton should not have been allowed as evidence.

Bridget Reeves, 32, Elsie Devine’s granddaughter, said: "There is no doubt in my mind that my grandmother shouldn’t have died in the way that she did.

"And it’s Jane Barton who has to be held accountable for that."

Dr Barton, who has been working as a GP in Gosport, will be allowed to continue working if she abides by certain conditions.

After the ruling, Dr Barton said in a statement: "I am disappointed by the decision of the GMC panel.

"But I appreciate that in imposing conditions, they recognised the great difficulties and unreasonable pressure under which I had to work.

"Anyone following this case carefully will know that I was faced with an excessive and increasing burden in trying to care for patients at the Gosport War Memorial Hospital.

"I did the best I could for my patients in the circumstances until finally I had no alternative but to resign."

Niall Dickson, chief executive of the GMC, said: "Our view was the doctor’s name should have been erased from the medical register following the panel’s finding of serious professional misconduct.

"We will be carefully reviewing the decision before deciding what further action, if any, may be necessary."

Liberal Democrat health spokesman Norman Lamb described the decision as "utterly extraordinary", branding it an "abject failure of the system to protect patients".

"Surely it cannot be right, given the deaths of many elderly people at Gosport War Memorial Hospital and the findings of failures on the part of Dr Barton that she should be permitted to continue to practise?"

Haiti: Spread Of Fatal Diseases Now Threaten Quake Survivors

31 Jan

FATAL DISEASES NOW A SERIOUS THREAT TO QUAKE SURVIVORS:

By JENNIFER KAY, Associated Press Writer Jennifer Kay, Associated Press Writer – 1 hr 50 mins ago:

MIAMI – The U.S. military has halted flights carrying Haitian earthquake victims to the United States because of an apparent dispute over where seriously injured patients should be taken for treatment.

An American doctor treating victims in Port-au-Prince warned that at least 100 patients needed to get to better hospitals or they could die, while the U.S. government said it was working to expand hospital capacity in both Haiti and in the U.S.

It was unclear exactly what prompted the Wednesday decision by the U.S. military to suspend the flights, or when it would end. Military officials said some states were refusing to take patients, though they wouldn’t say which states.

"There has been no policy decision by anyone to suspend evacuee flights," White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said. "This situation arose as we started to run out of room."

The halt came one day after Florida Gov. Charlie Crist wrote a letter to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, warning that "Florida’s health care system is quickly reaching saturation, especially in the area of high level trauma care."

But officials in Crist’s office said they didn’t know of any Florida hospitals were turning away patients. He asked Sebelius to activate the National Disaster Medical System, which is typically used in domestic disasters and pays for victims’ care.

Poor coordination and limited resources, not costs, drove the governor’s request, said John Cherry, spokesman for the Florida Division of Emergency Management.

"We’ve made it clear that (the cost) is an issue we’ll deal with down the road," he said.

State health officials say some medical flights landed in Florida without any advance notice, and the poor coordination may be keeping some survivors from getting the help they need, Cherry said. He cited the case of a burn victim flown earlier this week into Tampa, which is not equipped to treat those injuries.

Meanwhile on the ground in Haiti, Dr. Barth Green, a doctor involved in the relief effort in Port-au-Prince, warned that his patients needed to get to better hospitals.

"We have 100 critically ill patients who will die in the next day or two if we don’t Medevac them," said Green, chairman of the University of Miami’s Global Institute for Community Health and Development.

Civilian flights have not been stopped, but Green said he was relying on U.S. military flights to fly out patients because they are larger and better equipped to handle injured patients.

At a temporary field hospital at Haiti’s international airport set up with donations to Green’s institute, two men had already died of tetanus. Doctors said 5-year-old Betina Joseph faced a similar fate within 24 hours unless evacuated to a U.S. hospital where she can be put on a respirator.

The girl — infected with tetanus through a two-inch cut on her thigh — weakly shooed a fly buzzing around her face as her mother caressed her corn rows, apparently unaware that getting the girl out could mean life or death.

"If we can’t save her by getting her out right away, we won’t save her," said Dr. David Pitcher, one of 34 surgeons staffing the field hospital.

The White House said federal officials were working with other states and non-government aid groups in Haiti to expand hospital capacity so they can make more room for critically injured patients aboard the USNS Comfort hospital ship anchored off the coast of Port-au-Prince.

There have already been 435 patients evacuated to the U.S., 18,500 patients treated by HHS personnel on the ground in Haiti, and 19,000 patients treated by the Comfort either on ship or on shore, with 635 patients currently on aboard the Comfort.

Captain Kevin Aandahl, spokesman for U.S. Transportation Command, said no evacuation requests have been made by U.S. military medical facilities in Haiti, including the Comfort, since the flights were suspended Wednesday.

U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Kenneth Merten said he did not know who ordered a stop to the evacuations but said it is a problem that should be fixed.

"I’m sure the Department of Defense wants to do the right thing as do we," he said Saturday in a conference call. "Look, everybody is here working on the ground trying to do the right thing for as many people as possible."

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Associated Press writers Frank Bajak in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and Danica Coto in San Juan, Puerto Rico, contributed to this report.

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Haiti’s earthquake survivors are facing a new deadly threat as the United Nations warns of a rise in potentially fatal diseases such as tetanus, measles and diarrhoea.

UN agencies and the Haitian government are preparing a mass vaccination drive to try to halt the spread of disease in squalid refugee camps housing survivors.

The immunisation campaign will start next week, World Health Organisation spokesman Paul Garwood confirmed.

"Several medical teams report a growing caseload of diarrhoea in the last two to three days," he said.

"There are also reports of measles and tetanus, including in resettlement camps, which is worrisome due to the high concentration of people."

Mr Garwood said just 58% of Haitian infants were immunised before the quake.

He also highlighted a "critical" need for surgeons, with an estimated 30 to 100 amputations being carried out every day in some hospitals, while supplies of anaesthetics and antibiotics were also needed.

More than two weeks after the 7.0-magnitude quake, which killed up to 200,000 people, the massive international aid effort is still struggling to meet survivors’ needs.

Haitians living in makeshift camps in the ruins of Port-au-Prince and elsewhere complain that the flood of aid arriving in the country is trickling down too slowly.

The aid effort has also been dogged by complaints over a lack of coordination between UN officials, the 20,000 US forces in Haiti, and aid groups helping the country.

In a further blow, the US military has reportedly suspended medical evacuations of injured Haitians until a row over who will pay for their care is settled.

Citing unnamed military officials, The New York Times said the flights ended on Wednesday after Florida Governor Charlie Crist formally asked the federal government to shoulder some of the cost of the care.

Meanwhile, Port-au-Prince’s iconic iron market, built in 1889, was ravaged by fire on Friday and left to burn for hours by overstretched firefighters.

As the blaze tore through the market, looters swarmed in over the rubble and carried off pieces of metal and wood.

There have been no signs of further survivors being rescued after a 16-year-old girl was pulled alive from the ruins on Wednesday after surviving 15 days without food.

The acting head of the UN mission in Haiti also warned the rebuilding of the western hemisphere’s poorest nation could take decades.

"I think this is going to take many more decades than only 10 years and this is an enormous backwards step in Haiti’s development. We will not have to start from zero but from below zero," Edmond Mulet said.

Ringsend Residents Hold Protest Rally Against Proposed Dublin Bay Incinerator

30 Jan

RINGSEND PROTEST RALLY AGAINST DUBLIN BAY INCINERATOR:

Residents in the Ringsend area of Dublin are demanding that construction work on the Poolbeg incinerator is stopped.

They claim the facility is too big – even for the waste needs of the capital.

The controversial facility will have a capacity for 600,000 tonnes of rubbish every year.

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About 150 protestors have marched outside the Dublin Waste To Energy Project on the Sean Moore Road in Ringsend to voice their opposition to the planned Dublin Bay incinerator.

Members of the various political parties were present, including Fianna Fáil’s Chris Andrews, Labour councillor Kevin Humphries and Fine Gael’s Lucinda Creighton.

The Residents Against Incineration group is calling on the Minister for the Environment to instruct Dublin City Council to cancel the contract to Covanta, the planned private operator of the incinerator.

The Dublin Waste To Energy Project is holding an open-day in the area to provide information for local residents on the planned incinerator.

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UPDATE:

RESIDENTS PROTESTING against the Poolbeg incinerator in Dublin have said they are prepared to block access to the plant if it goes ahead.

Francis Corr, chairwoman of the Combined Residents Against Incineration, said there was only one way in and one way out of the plant site.

“We will block it if we have to,” she said.

Up to 200 residents of Ringsend, Irishtown and Sandymount protested against the planned incinerator on Saturday. They were joined by local politicians including Fianna Fáil TD Chris Andrews, Labour TD Rory Quinn, Fine Gael TD Lucinda Creighton and councillors Kevin Humphries and Maria Parodi (both Labour).

Temporarily blocking traffic going to and from the East-Link bridge, the protesters marched from Clanna Gael Fontenoy GAA Club along Seán Moore Road to the roundabout and back again.

Inside the GAA club, Dublin City Council was hosting an information session on the incinerator project. Waste to Energy is a public private partnership between the council and Dublin Waste to Energy Ltd, a joint venture company set up by Covanta Energy USA and Dong Energy Generation A/S, Denmark.

Construction has already begun on the plant, which will have the capacity to deal with 600,000 tonnes of waste a year. The council has said up to 500 people will be employed at the site at peak construction and the plant will provide 60 permanent jobs.

The incinerator has been in the planning for 12 years and locals have protested against it from the beginning.

Their concerns include the effects of traffic going to and from the plant and the danger to health posed by emissions from it.

Ms Corr said it was not too late for the Minister for the Environment, local TD John Gormley, to instruct the council to cancel the Covanta contract, but if this did not happen, residents would not give up.

“We will keep on going until it is over,” Ms Corr added. “There is only one way in and one way out down there; we can block it if we have to.”

Many of the protesters said they had lost trust in the council because of its record with the wastewater treatment plant, also built at Poolbeg. When the plant was at construction stage, residents were told it would not create odour problems, but it took six years for the odour pollution to abate.

“Before it opened, we were told the sewage plant was the most modern in the EU; you can’t trust these people,” local resident Larry Joyce said.

Séamus Lyons, assistant city manager, said the council worked very hard to regain the trust of the people. It dealt with the problems at the wastewater treatment plant as quickly as it could and was very open through all stages of the planning process for the waste to energy plant from the beginning.

Any protests at the access road to the plant would be a matter for Gardaí to deal with, Mr Lyons said.

www.dublinwastetoenergy.ie

 

Eamonn Lillis Is Found Guilty Of His Wife’s Manslaughter

29 Jan

EAMONN LILLIS FOUND GUILTY OF HIS WIFE’S MANSLAUGHTER:

Eamonn Lillis has been found guilty of the manslaughter of his wife Celine Cawley (46) at the Central Criminal Court in Dublin today.

The jury returned its verdict shortly after 6pm this evening after deliberating for 9 hours.

Mr Lillis (52), a TV advertising producer, originally from Terenure in Dublin, had pleaded not guilty to the murder of his wife while their teenaged daughter was at school.

Earlier, the jurors had sought direction from Mr Justice Barry White on the definitions in respect of the verdicts of murder, manslaughter and acquittal.

Mr Justice White told the court “to paraphrase, where a person kills another unlawfully, the killing shall not be a murder unless the person intended to kill or seriously injure.”

He said if the State “proves an unlawful killing, but fails to prove intent, then the appropriate verdict is manslaughter”.

Mr Justice White told the jury if they are to return a manslaughter verdict at least 10 of them must agree on the same reason, be that provocation, gross negligence self defence or a failure to prove intent.

He said the “accused is entitled to an absolute acquittal if the State fail to prove an unlawful killing”.

This morning the jury were told by the judge they could return a majority verdict. This means agreement by at least 10 out of the 12 jurors would be acceptable for a verdict.

The judge originally told the jury they had to make a unanimous verdict, but following two days of deliberations he gave them new directions today.

After requesting to examine the brick found near Ms Cawley’s body, the jury resumed deliberations.

Yesterday the six women and six men listened to a recording of Mr Lillis giving his evidence up until the point where he said he dialled 999. They also listened to the recording of that call.

Mr Lillis first said he had found an intruder attacking her on the morning of December 15th, 2008, at their home, Rowan Hill, Windgate Road, Howth, Co Dublin. He has since admitted that there was no intruder.

The jury was sent home for a second evening yesterday after deliberating all day.