1942. Smuggling etc.

Fermanagh Herald 1942.

ENNISKILLEN PUBLICAN SUMMONED. CASE AT PETTY SESSIONS. Mrs. Catherine McNulty, publican, The Brook, Enniskillen, was summoned at Enniskillen Petty Sessions on Monday, before Mr. J. O. H. Long, R.M., for unreasonable delay in admitting police to licensed premises.

Sergeant Torrens gave evidence that on Sunday, 7th December, he had been on plain clothes duty in the Brook with Constable Bates, and saw four people come down over the West Bridge and knock at the defendant’s licensed premises, but they left when the door was not opened to them. The constable and witness went round to the back and stood at the back gate, and when there heard a man’s voice and somebody came out and flashed a torch on them. They went round to the front again and witness knocked at the door, it being then 8-36 p.m., and shouted that they were police on public-house duty. There was a terrible scurrying of feet as if people were running all over the place. Witness heard a woman say to open the door. Witness knocked six times in all, and the door was opened at 8-45 p.m. by a daughter-in-law of the licensee, who said that she heard the knock but thought that one of the men of the family had opened the door. Witness searched the premises, and in the room on the left found a male visitor with a young lady, but they were quite satisfied as he was in the habit of visiting in the house. In the old kitchen or cellar under the bar they found a young man (charged with being on the premises) standing with his back against the wall as if hiding. He said he had been over helping Anthony, a son of the licensee, to put tyres on his car. Witness did not see Anthony in the house at that time, and  later when he saw Anthony he said he had not seen the man since that afternoon.

To .Mr. G. E. Warren (for defendant), witness said that Anthony came in after he had sent for him. Actually he had the keys of the bar. — Yes, the bar was locked. And everything was in order ? —Yes. Witness added that there was no sign of drink. The case was dismissed on. the merits.

The man found on the premises said he was down in the yard before he heard the knock at the door, and when he heard the policeman he thought it better to hide. His Worship said he would give him the benefit of the doubt this time and dismissed the case,

CARBIDE IN LARGE QUANTITIES NEAR BORDER. MINISTRY’S CONCERN

It has been brought to notice that exceptionally large quantities of carbide of calcium, are at present stored in various places convenient to the border, stated the Ministry of Home Affairs in a letter to Enniskillen Urban Council on Monday, adding that the presumption was that it was being so stored to facilitate it’s being smuggled into the Twenty-Six Counties. It was essential, stated the Ministry, that this illegal traffic should be stopped, and they asked the Council, as licensing authority, to co-operate by ensuring that no licence-holders in its district were authorised to maintain stocks of carbide of calcium in excess of the quantities stored by them prior to the outbreak of the present war.

Information as to the stocks in Enniskillen was given by the Town Clerk (Mr. A. W. G. Ritchie, M.A.), who stated that in l958-’59 there were 8 license-holders storing in all 6,816 lbs. of carbide; in 1939-’40 eight licence-holders storing 5,576 lbs; in 1940-‘41 eight licence-holders storing 5,576 lbs., and in 1941-’42 ten licence-holders to store 9,912 lbs. Richardson and Clingan, successors to Lemon, who had a licence) sought to store 560 lbs. for the present year. The firm of J. Lendrum, who had a licence for 1,000 lbs. had not taken out a licence for .this year. Stevenson’s, who had a licence for 224 lbs., had also ceased to hold a licence. In the following there was no change in the amount of carbide during the four years up to the present:—Breen and Ternan, 560 lbs.; Devine, 224 lbs.; Nethercott, 672 lbs. Jeffers were down to 1,000 lbs. from 2,240 lbs. four years ago. Increases sought were Cathcart (a new firm, seeking a new licence), 1,000 lbs.; Anderson, from 1,000 lbs. during previous years to 5,000 lbs.; Dickie, from 896 lbs. to 2,500 lbs. It was decided to supply this information to the police authorities, with whom the Ministry asked the Council to co-operate in preventing possible smuggling.

JANUARY 10, 1942. TWO MEN CHARGED! WEARING ARMY CLOTHES

JAIL SENTENCES AT ENNISKILLEN. APPEAL LODGED. Two young men appeared before Mr. J. 0. H. Long, R.M., at Enniskillen Petty Sessions on Monday, in connection with military apparel they were found to have been wearing. They were Wm. John Corrigan, rabbit trapper, of Magheradunbar, Enniskillen, and John Charles Connor, also of Magheradunbar.

Connor was charged with stealing a pair of army trousers, value £1 0s 6d, and on a second charge it was alleged he had the trousers and a military blouse belonging to H.M. Forces and under the care of the Secretary of State, such articles of clothing being reasonably suspected of having been stolen or unlawfully obtained. Corrigan was charged with the larceny of a pair of army trousers and also for being in possession of the trousers and a service-pullover, reasonably suspected of having been stolen or unlawfully obtained.

Head Constable F. Thornton, who also prosecuted, said that in response to a message from the military he went to an army camp on 11th December and found the two accused detained there. Witness brought them, to the R.U.C. Barracks in Enniskillen, where Corrigan said he found the khaki trousers he was wearing in the field known as the “Cottage Nose ” on the 7th December. Defendant alleged he found the trousers rolled up and .hidden in the mouth of a rabbit burrow. He did not give witness any information about the jersey, which witness pointed out to him, bore an army mark. Connor, who had a complete suit of military uniform, said he found the trousers in the field opposite Captain Teele’s gate, in which his (defendant’s) house was situated. The jacket or blouse had been given to him by a soldier who had been stationed in Enniskillen several months ago, and in return witness gave him a couple of rabbits. Replying to Mr. Herbert, witness stated he was not prepared to swear that these articles had been abandoned.

A Quartermaster from a military unit said the trousers cost £1 0s 6d to replace, the blouse £1 2s 6d, and the jersey 6/9. He did not consider the trousers had been abandoned. All military clothes did not bear-personal identification marks. Corrigan swore he found the trousers in a rabbit burrow half a mile from a military camp. They were very dirty, and as clothing was so scarce and he thought they had been discarded, he took them home and had them washed. He got the pullover fourteen months ago from the late Mr. Edward McNulty. Mr. Herbert said one of the McNulty family had been in the last war driving horses. Holding up the pullover, the Head Constable asked witness did he mean to ask his Worship to hold that it had been through the last war. Defendant—No.

Connor, in evidence, swore he found the trousers in the field beside his house and, thinking they were no use, he brought them home and boiled them to get the oil and dirt out of them. The jacket had been given to him by a soldier. Mr. Herbert commented that no soldier would dare go out with the blouse in that condition, the sleeve torn and buttons off and the trousers torn and dirty.

FATALITY AT THRESHING OPERATION. BROOKEBORO’ FARMER’S SAD FATE

William Ernest Cecil Johnston a farmer aged 37, residing at Gola House, Brookeborough died in Fermanagh County Hospital on Monday night as a result of the injuries received when the drum of his threshing machine exploded.  At an inquest held by Mr. G.  Warren, Coroner, a verdict was returned that death he was due to shock and hemorrhage following fracture of the school and laceration of the brain.  Thomas Alan Kettyle, farm labourer employed by deceased, said that shortly after 1.00 pm. on Monday January 5th he went with the deceased to the thresher where they were getting it ready to thresh in the afternoon.  They set it up and about 3.00 pm deceased started the engine which was let on for some time and it worked all right.  About 4.00 pm deceased lifted a sheaf of corn to put on the thresher and before he reached the drum the drum exploded with a crash.  Witness saw part of the drum hit deceased on the head and he fell.  Deceased did not speak and witness stretched him out; his head was bleeding.  Deceased was removed to the hospital shortly afterwards.  Dr. Thomas J.  Hagan, house surgeon in the County Hospital said deceased was unconscious when admitted to the hospital.  An operation was performed to relieve pressure on the brain but deceased died at 10.00 pm without regaining consciousness.

SHOTS FIRED BY “B” SPECIALS.  EVIDENCE IN DERRYLIN CASE.  At a special court in Derrylin Sean McGovern, merchant, Derrylin and a youth named Farrelly were charged with attempting to export 13 hundredweight of flour, loaves, margarine and other goods into the 26-Counties.  Sergeant A.  Sheridan, “B” Specials stated that while on duty that morning at 3.30 beside the Ballyconnell border a lorry came from Derrylin direction; he ordered the driver to halt and the machines slowed down but as he was about to step on the running board it dashed off again; witness and another constable then opened fire but the rear of the vertical was protected with bags of sulphate of ammonia and the lorry past into the 26 -Counties; just then another lorry came along was stopped and in it they found defendants who admitted they were taking the goods to the 26-Counties.  Major Dickie, RM said the defendants would have to remain in prison until the Petty Sessions next month.  Mr. Herbert, solicitor, for the defendants, appealed for bail as it was Christmas Time.  Eventually when McGovern’s father lodged  £84 in court bail was allowed defendants to appear at Enniskillen Petty Sessions on January 5th.

TWO GARRISON MEN HAD 3.600 LBS. OF CANDLES. POLICE SEIZURE IN TYRONE. “Would Supply All Fermanagh,” Says R.M. DEFENDANTS FINED AT OMAGH. The seizure by police of a lorry carrying 3,800 lbs. of candles, in a yard at Ballygawley on the night of the 2nd Oct. led to the appearance at Omagh Court on Monday, before Mr. Mark, R.M., of two Fermanagh men—Patrick Carty, Garrison, and Patrick F. McGovern, do.–charged with being knowingly concerned in dealing in and attempting to export the candles. Each of defendants was fined £20 and the lorry which belonged to Carty, with the candles, was forfeited. Notice of appeal was lodged.

Capt. Fyffe was for the Customs Authorities, and Mr. G. Grant, B.L. (instructed by Mr. P. J. Flanigan, LL.B.) defended. Constable Gordon stated that on the 2nd October at 8.35 p.m. he visited a yard attached to licensed premises in Ballygawley where he round three men standing beside a lorry on which there were thirty cases of candles. Witness asked them to produce dockets relating to the candles but they were unable to do so nor could they state where in Belfast they had purchased them. Sergt. Spratt said the men were brought to the barracks by Constable Gordon where Doherty in a statement said he brought the candles from Belfast in the lorry. McGovern refused to make a statement.

Cross-examined, witness said Doherty told him that he was employed as a driver by Carty and that on the 1st Oct. Carty told him to take the lorry to Belfast for candles and that he would be accompanied by McGovern, who would direct him where to go. Doherty also told witness that they left Garrison for Belfast at 7 a.m. When they were returning home they were delayed by a punctured wheel and the lights gave out at Ballygawley where they decided to remain for the night and had arranged for lodgings.

At this stage Mr. Grant said the explanation as to why there were no .dockets in existence in relation to the transaction was, because payment was made in cash. Sergt. Porter, Garrison, said he took statements from the defendants. McGovern said that he, Carty and others were discussing the great shortage of candles on the 1st Oct. and he told them where they could be procured in Belfast. It was arranged that he should purchase 72 cases.

LOADED ON LORRY. Thomas Lundy, Cromac St., Belfast, said on the 2nd Oct. he had been asked by a man called Bateman if he could get some candles for defendants. Witness agreed to do so and purchased the candles from a merchant in King Street at £262 l0s. The candles were brought to May’s Market where they were loaded on Carty’s lorry. Witness made about 12/6 per case on the transaction, Bateman receiving part of the profit. Witness was paid in cash.

Farming Society’s Bad Times. Fermanagh Farming Society – due to a cessation of its activities caused by the war – has fallen on hard times. The Society sought at Enniskillen Urban Council on Monday to have removed a debt of £17 1s 0d (Year’s rent) and £5 2s 1d (Half Year’s rates) due by the Society to the Council in respect of the Broadmeadow.

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