Collateral Damage


Andrew Butler was one of the people injured during the eviction of housing activists from the occupied 34 Frederick Street North, Dublin 1, on Tuesday night.

In the clip above, filmed at last night’s rally in support of the activists, he describes what happened to him.

He received four stitches to his hand (see above) in the Mater Hospital, Dublin, following the eviction.

Via Nugent Eugent


Last night.

In Trinity News.

Journalist Peter Kelly reported on an interview with Trinity College Dublin student Conchúir Ó Ráidigh who was arrested and later released on Tuesday evening, following the removal of housing activists from 34 Frederick Street North, Dublin 1 – after it was occupied for 25 days.

Mr Kelly reported:

Recalling his arrest, Ó Ráidigh told Trinity News that he was “grabbed” on entering North Frederick Street last night as Gardaí evicted occupiers. “They grabbed me, three or four of them, more or less instantaneously the minute I stepped onto the road.” He added that “usually you’d expect some kind of warning like ‘get off the road’ or ‘move over there’ and if you comply you’re okay and you won’t get that treatment.”

“They dragged me pretty strategically behind the parked garda public order unit van and there I got pretty badly roughed up,” said Ó Ráidigh. He remembered the incident and said that: “I was out of view of everybody, but they were putting punches into me, I got knees, I got elbows and the most serious thing I got was a knee to the head.”

He recalled that he was “adrenalised [sic]” and so “didn’t really feel” the pain at the time. “It wasn’t quite as noticeable, and when I got into the cell I could feel it getting worse and worse.”

Later in the night, Ó Ráidigh went to hospital for his injuries. He stated that: “I had very low energy and the decision was made that I had to go to hospital. I was taken, and I had scans taken through the night.”

Outlining his injuries, Ó Ráidigh reports that he suffered soft tissue damage through his neck, a small bone deviation, and a concussion. He was also told there was a possible “small bleed” in his brain.

Arrested Trinity student Conchúir Ó Ráidigh speaks out on his injuries (Peter Kelly, Trinity News)

Earlier: Garda Sources Say

Yesterday: Not Backing Down

56 thoughts on “Collateral Damage

      1. Ron

        Do you feel good about yourself with that not funny comment? How long did it take you to come up with that? Sit down Clown

        1. Papi

          I’m already sitting down Ronald. Anything else?
          And, yes, I do feel good about myself, thanks for asking. Or were you asking Dekloot?

  1. Spud

    “Recalling his arrest, Ó Ráidigh told Trinity News that he was “grabbed” on entering North Frederick Street last night as Gardaí evicted occupiers”.

    So the Gardai ‘evicted’ the occupiers now?

    1. Ron

      Are you as stupid in real life or do you just take on the persona of a dipso on this site? I hope you get better soon.

      1. baz

        this engine does not run on praise.

        a job? we are pretty much in full employment, anyone that wants to work can do so.

        a house? I rented for almost 20 years before I bought my first home. I notice snowflakes want houses gifted to them in their 20’s – no economy can support that wish list.

          1. kellMA

            Back in my renting days my rent for a room in an apartment shared with 2 others was 21% of my gross monthly salary. Today it works out at around 33%. That is a big hike.

        1. Stan

          So I bought a house in Dublin 25 years ago for about 12% of what it would cost me now. Obviously wages were lower then, but even in real terms, I’d guess no more than 30% of its current price. It’s not quite paid for because I remortgaged just before the crash to do some work etc. Still, I’ve a gaff in the centre of town for less per month than a room in a similar house would cost me to rent at current prices. Aren’t I the clever one?

          I was able to do this on less than the average industrial wage. But at an interest rate that meant the repayments were well above what my rent would have been. Whereas now, with interest rates on the floor, but prices through the roof, no one in a similar position to mine back then could do the same. But yeah, snowflakes, want something for nothing, get a job, go and live in Leitrim etc.

    1. Col

      What about the job holding, tax paying, record-rent paying people of Ireland?
      Paying all their dues but no hope of getting what you got- a home of their own.
      Just have to move to Leitrim and commute, Dublin is full? Those empty buildings are owned, so they can let them collapse to rubble if they please?

      1. kellMA

        I tend to agree. It’s not so simple. I am sure there is an element of over-crusading here but the fact is that rents are mad at the moment and supply is miserable. Something needs be done about Air BnB and also whilst I respect the right to do what you like with your own assets, we do live in a society and that is why we have public services that are not commercial so we also need some sort of mechanism that doesn’t allow people let properties in areas that are vital for the health of our economic and moral (if that’s the right word) health just crumble and remain idle. Fine; some of these could be inherited and maybe they don’t have the cash to renovate them but then they should be subject to some sort of CPO. At the very least we, as a society, should be trying to preserve these beautiful buildings and bring these streets back from the tenement-like back-holes they have become. In the long term, it would benefit the economy.

  2. b

    “Recalling his arrest, Ó Ráidigh told Trinity News that he was “grabbed” on entering North Frederick Street last night as Gardaí evicted occupiers. “They grabbed me, three or four of them, more or less instantaneously the minute I stepped onto the road.”

    so about half of the ‘security force’ were involved outside the building while the eviction was in process, and nobody else saw it? I hope he’s going to make a full statement to the guards on it, I don’t doubt he got a few digs from the hired heavies but i don’t think we’ve got the full story either

    1. George

      Can’t watch the video but if you’re talking about the man who is quoted, he is saying the Gardaí brought him out of sight in order to beat him up.

      1. b

        ok maybe I read it wrong, point still stands that i find it hard to believe there’s no witnesses, it’s quiet the allegation

        1. George

          Have you never seen the Gardai dealing with protestors before there were videos online about ten years ago of non-violent people having the crap beaten out of them

        2. Cian

          Considering the number of people milling about on the street outside taking pictures of the Gardaí – I find it strange that three or four guards were able to move this guy behind a van and beat him up – and no one noticed.

          1. George

            You just don’t want to believe it. If a witness comes forward you’ll say you don’t believe them. If there’s video that proves it you’ll say they deserved it.

  3. Dermie

    Really getting bored of these “ooh look at me” lot. If they left when they were asked to leave the illegal occupation then there would have been no injuries. They brought this on themselves …

    1. Daisy Chainsaw

      As did the 10,000 homeless. If they’d just paid 110% of their monthly wage to their FG slumlord, they wouldn’t be on the streets now, would they?

      1. JunkFace

        “Yeah and how come these so called people can’t compete with Multinational Vulture funds who buy up everything, then evict tenants because they just made a killing on the market? Get a better job you layabouts!”

        Also a note, some Vulture funds made profits of 80 million euro in 2016 and paid less Tax than an average worker who earned 40K. This was the last straw for me. Leprechaun economics at their worst

  4. Bruce_Wee

    So, there are clearly a few issues regarding this whole thing. The guards, wearing balaclavas for the purpose of protecting themselves against potential “Firebombs” and supporting a group of men hired by ? (Private landlord, government, Reverse Vampires or all of the above) with no identifiable markings on them for recourse and accountability of their actions against the people occupying the premises.

    On the other side, we have a group of individuals occupying a property which has been left vacant during one of the biggest, hottest issues currently effecting a large proportion of people within our nation. They are trying to highlight the issue but in doing so are illegally on site for the past 3 weeks on the premises, with a court order issued to vacate.

    Were the people involved with removing them too rough or were the people occupying getting what they deserve?

    The real issue, I personally think, is that state resources where used to enforce the actions of a private entity in the removal of these people, while maybe ignoring certain rules regarding identification.

    There is a clear rise in Europe to right wing politics, look at Sweden recently. While we don’t have a clear right wing party in Ireland, it’s food for thought that if we don’t hold the government accountable for certain actions, they become the norm and before you know it…..

    Anyway, its not a clear black and white issue and people will disagree, but that’s a good thing. It means you live in a country where your allowed to to have an opinion.

    This matter is far from over

    1. Clampers Outside!

      The rise of the Right is due to the failures* of the Left.
      Even the darling intellectual of the Left Chomsky says so, and has been saying so for years.

      * they abandoned the working class for social justice and identity politics, according to Chomsky.

        1. SOQ

          How is the advertising going? I can put you in touch with a few people if you are having a dry spell? It will require imagination outside Broadsheet of course.

  5. JunkFace

    Protesting and Marching against Gov’t actions or lack of actions, justice etc. Is a normal and acceptable thing to do in all European cities, except for Ireland. Irish people do not stand up for their right, clearly as we have one of the most unfair societies in Europe. Portions of own population ridicule others who want to stand up for their rights, or make a positive change to society, especially the younger generation. Which I find deeply depressing.

    We should be encouraging them!

    1. Joxer

      The problem with Irish people in my view is that we have this odd relationship with Democracy. We think that Democracy is the casting of a vote every n number of years to elect people who will run the country. These people we elect we deem to be somehow special or otherwise capable of understanding complex issues and thus we leave them to do it. We can then moan when they screw up the job they are supposed to do and the problem is at an arms length from us, the electorate. We do not see that democracy is an everyday activity that needs protecting and engagement from us as the people who partake and own this society and economy.

      Take for example the most recent popular movement of the water charge protest. Here you had a sizeable proportion of the population (some say 100k some say less but anyway you look at it, the event was huge) walking in Dublin city centre and stating firmly that we wont be paying twice for water. From a political point of view it was a disaster for the govt and indeed for any TD who was at odds with that protesting constituency, for the establishment it was equally as disastrous: as the potential for change, if those marching realised it, was that on that Saturday had they wished they could have removed the current govt by storming the Dail and other govt buildings. Okay quite dramatic i agree but it has happened before in other countries with other movements. The key thing here is organisation and willingness to own the results of those actions. So whilst the people were shouting “no way, we wont pay” the next logical step of removing those who were not listening to the chants was quickly shied away from. The establishment saw this threat and caved in on water charges (sure these will come in via another route at another time) and the movement dissipated like smoke in the wind. The marchers went home happy that the voice of the people had been listened to and it beat the system and the lions quickly reverted to sheep and baa’d all the way home. with a more sophisticated leadership and a more sophisticated citzenry it could have been so much different

      This building occupy movement is another direct action initiative that will not succeed unless the population get behind it, but that is going to be a hard sell. Already we see selective reporting from the media that is aimed at painting protestors as loons/marxists/snowflakes/freeloaders.

      For a society to change the society needs to want to change. i dont think thats the case here. As a friend of mine said the other night “you see that eviction with the guards and the Balaclavas? , well there’ll be murder on facebook tonight over that”

  6. broadbag

    On original FB post he calls them ‘criminal, loyalist…’ where on earth does he get that from?

    His story doesn’t really add up either.

    1. George

      If he wanted to make something up he could just say they beat him up inside the building. That would be easier.

      1. broadbag

        Maybe he’s not smart enough to think of that. Anyway, the use of the word ‘loyalist’ suggests he has another agenda.

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