Arson attack on Quinn crane

Dramatic scenes captured by our photographer Eunan Sweeney as the fire destroys the 60 tonne mobile crane at the new Ballinamore school site.
The arson attack on a Quinn Group crane working at the site of Ballinamore Community School last Thursday, April 4 has been branded a “publicity stunt” with calls for the entire community to stand against such acts.

The arson attack on a Quinn Group crane working at the site of Ballinamore Community School last Thursday, April 4 has been branded a “publicity stunt” with calls for the entire community to stand against such acts.

Leitrim County Council unanimously condemned the arson attack in Ballinamore. They called on those engaging in this sort of behaviour to “quit it”.

Chairperson of Concerned Irish Citizens, Maureen Martin said they “condemn it outright” and stated that the perpetrators of this crime “are not supporters of Quinn and are not supporters of Concerned Irish Citizens.” Mrs Martin said, “We fought so hard to get this new school to construction stage and now it provides employment in the area.” She said the idea of bringing this attack to Ballinamore was a “publicity stunt.” She asked people to be vigilant against these perpetrators and to stand up as a community against them. She said these acts do not have the public’s support locally, as they are “endangering jobs.”

The Quinn Group believe the latest attack on their property is an “escalation of events.”

The group encourages local community leaders to condemn outright all of these outrages and to encourage people to give information on the culprits to the Gardai and PSNI. Gardai are working with the PSNI in an effort to stop further attacks against the Quinn Group.

The crane which was destroyed by fire in Ballinamore was worth €350,000. The PSNI said they were investigating the “strong possibility” that all recent attacks were carried out by the same group of people.

“This is making up a major part of our enquiry into these attacks here,” he said. Gardai forensically examined the site of the fire last week and are now appealing for anyone who may have noticed anything suspicious in the vicinity of the new school to contact them on (071) 9644002. “This is a very serious incident,” noted a local garda, “we are very lucky that nobody was seriously injured or killed.” It is understood work recommenced at the site of Ballinamore Community School yesterday, Tuesday, April 9.