"The Government have clearly sent the message to Shell, ‘you can do whatever you want’. Fortunately due to protest, the refinery remains unconnected to the gas field. If, as Shell planned, gas had been flowing by now, we would potentially all be dealing with a gas leak and explosion.”
Doyle joins Corrib security
A RETIRED senior garda has become one of the latest high-profile recruits to work on the controversial Corrib gas project.
Former Superintendent Pat Doyle has joined Shell’s 170-strong security team – under contract from Integrated Risk Management Solutions (IRMS) – for the project, The Mayo News has learned.
The retired garda superintendent, who spent eleven years as garda chief in Westport, joined the IRMS team during the summer. The Carlow native retired after 35 years in the force in May 2009.
He is not the first retired senior garda to be employed on the project. In 2006, Shell announced the appointment of Mayo’s former Chief Superintendent, John Carey as a part-time adviser. Mr Carey is a native of nearby Bangor Erris.
IRMS took over the security operation at the Ballinaboy terminal on September 25, after the contract with Brendan Gilmore Security Ltd ended.
Its security personnel are also deployed at Sruwaddacon Bay, the site of Shell’s ongoing investigative works for a sub-sea tunnel proposed to link the last section of the pipeline to the terminal. In a statement yesterday IRMS Director, Jim Farrell, confirmed the expansion of the company’s services for Shell and Pat Doyle’s employment.
“In September, we expanded our services on Corrib Gas. In addition to our work on the pipeline route, we also now manage all safety and security services at the terminal site. We are pleased that over 60 of those who had worked at the terminal for Gilmore Security have joined our team. We now have 70 people from the local area working with us, all benefitting from enhanced training and qualification courses.”
The statement continued: “Among our new colleagues is Pat Doyle. Pat joined us in July 2010 and will play an important role as part of the management team. Pat retired from the Garda Siochána in May, 2009 and his skills and 35-years experience will be invaluable.”
Mr Farrell’s spokesman confirmed also that the entire security team for Corrib now numbers 170.
Responding to Pat Doyle’s appointment, John Monaghan of Pobal Chill Chomáin said: “From a community perspective we are not at all surprised. Of course, people are entitled to employment but this appointment certainly reinforces our suspicions and views about the entire security dimension of this project.”
IRMS has worked on security for the Corrib gas project since 2008. Last year it became involved in controversy after one of its former employees, Michael Dwyer – who had worked at the Corrib project in 2008 – was killed by police in mysterious circumstances in Bolivia on April 16, 2009. Just over a week later, IRMS security personnel again became embroiled in another mysterious controversy after Rossport farmer, Willie Corduff claimed he was assaulted by masked men in the middle of the night, following a protest under a parked truck at the Glengad landfall site for the pipe.
In the aftermath, IRMS Director, Jim Farrell categorically said that none of his personnel was involved in any assault on Mr Corduff. Moreover, he also later called on human rights group, Frontline to retract any insinuation in its 2010 report, Breakdown in Trust, about his employees’ involvement in the alleged assault.
Mr Farrell said at the time that the DPP had concluded that IRMS had ‘no case to answer and no prosecution will be sought’ in relation to the investigation. He also said the DPP had concluded that IRMS’s actions were ‘both legal and justified’.
The author, barrister Brian Barrington’s evidence was corroborated by Mr Corduff’s hospital medical records which stated he had ‘been kicked all over the body’.
The Frontline report proposed that gardaí outside Mayo re-investigate the assault.