The Price We Paid


Lorraine and Sgt Maurice McCabe and A Force For Justice by Michael Clifford

This morning.

On RTE’s Today with Seán O’Rourke.

Michael Clifford, of The Irish Examiner, spoke of a book he has written about Sgt Maurice McCabe, called A Force For Justice: The Maurice McCabe Story.

During the interview, an extract of a statement made by Sgt McCabe’s wife Lorraine in preparation for a legal action against An Garda Siochana, which is contained in the book, was read out by Tara Campbell.

In it, Lorraine describes what life has been like for her and her family for almost 10 years:

“In 1993, I married a decent, honourable and, above all, an honest man. For the last nine years, because of these admirable traits and his decision to challenge the system for all of the right reasons, his life has intentionally, relentlessly and systematically been rendered intolerable for him at every turn.

“This has had a profound and very destructive effect on me, my children, my marriage and on our life as a family.

“It’s usual, in a marriage, to be able to turn to your partner for support. In my case, given the pressure that Maurice has been under, I’ve not felt able to burden him further at times when I would have ordinarily needed support.

“I’ve largely had to cope with other trials and difficulties in our lives, including the death of both of my parents, alone. I’ve also had to shield Maurice from many of the day-to-day family concerns regarding the children and otherwise – what would ordinarily be dealt with together.

One of the most difficult episodes for me was when Maurice was so low that he was admitted into St John of Gods for help. I’ll never forget the desperation I felt that night, after leaving him and driving home alone and wondering how I could shield the children from this. 

“We’ve five children, the eldest of whom is now 21. Tom was only a baby when all of this began. Despite my best efforts, their entire childhoods have been marred.

“Our lives have been destroyed. For years, we lived in fear. And now that fear has turned into extreme anger at what they tried to do and how things could have ended but for the relentless fight we had to endure and the tireless work of our legal team.

I’m still married to a decent, honourable, and above all, an honest man.

“However, he, I, and our children, have paid a very high price for his honesty and his decision to challenge the system in the interest of others.”

Listen back to the interview in full here

Leah Farrell, Rollingnews/Easons

25 thoughts on “The Price We Paid

  1. Otis Blue

    Kicking against the pricks. It was ever thus. But few have the guts to do it.
    Ireland needs many, many more people like Maurice McCabe. People who are prepared to call out the ruinous gombeenism, cronyism and corruption so deeply embedded in Irish life.

    We owe him our deep gratitude.

  2. Kdoc1

    Regardless of tribunal outcomes Maurice McCabe has beaten the system in the eyes of the Irish people – albeit at great personal cost.

    1. francis almond

      Both Garda commissioners Callinan and O’Sullivan who presided over his excoriation retired on €300,000 a piece and €100,000 per annum. That’s better than a Lotto win. No system has been beaten here. The system is very much intact.

      1. Kdoc1

        It seems likely that McCabe’s fight will be the catalyst for major change in the Garda organisation. The commissioners received what is standard for retiring high-ranking civil servants.

        1. francis almond

          ipso facto. no system has ‘been beaten’.
          It’s nice that you think there’s ‘a major change’ about to sweep in. The very fact O’Sullivan has now become even more unaccountable suggests more of the same rather than the herald of a new dawn.

  3. Cloud

    Assume McCabe will be awarded damages some day, over all this?

    They’re gonna need a novelty sized cheque in order to fit all the zeroes on it.

  4. Milo

    This is something actually worth being totally outraged about. The cruelty of the cops and politicians in this case is frightening and unforgivable.

  5. Johnny Keenan

    There’s your new Garda Commissioner right there. Maurice McCabe would probably turn it down and rightly so.
    But to say we need someone from outside the country is ludicrous. Ireland is a caring open modern country carrying the hang ups of a complex shady past. If we are to move forward we need an Irish commissioner with all the traits of McCabe. If we can’t find that person in our own Republic we really are twinkle pantsed.

    1. TheQ47

      We may not need someone from outside the country, but I do think we need someone from outside the current Garda force, who’s not already embedded in the culture of that organisation, and who can begin to make the changes that are actually required, from the top down.

      1. shitferbrains

        You understate the natural reaction of a large group like the Guards to close ranks – sorry – against change.

    2. Frilly Keane

      I’d take the job
      and the first thing I’d do is liquidate and shut down Templemore

      and put the recruits up into Pats & All hallows

    3. phil

      @Johnny, Do you really think the establishment want an independent functioning police force. Not a chance. One of the best ways of ensuring that, is to appoint a safe pair of hands. Of course the right person could be found, but that’s not the purpose of the exercise. I don’t get why people don’t understand that.

  6. phil

    When I see Gardai on the street in uniform , I sometimes wonder if they are part of the problem, and I can only conclude, if you are an honest Garda, and have no involvement in this terrible business, if you are still wearing the uniform, then you are part of the problem.

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