In The News
Inside the Martens Trial (Part 1): The carefully planned character assassination of Jason Corbett
Documentary maker and journalist Brian Carroll was in court for the sentencing hearing of Molly Martens and her father Thomas for the killing of Molly’s husband Jason Corbett.
For two weeks the strategy of their defence team was to paint the brutal killing that took place in the bedroom of the couple’s home in August 2015 as an act of self-defence.
In episode one we hear how the Limerick man’s character was assassinated as the pair sought to present what they claimed were mitigating circumstances, all in a bid to have their jail-time minimised. Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by Suzanne Brennan.
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Why Gardaí are still investigating rogue solicitor Michael Lynn17:22Renegade solicitor Michael Lynn stole €18 million from the banks at the height of the Celtic Tiger property boom. It took until this week for justice to be served, when Lynn was sentenced to 5½ years in prison.After the sentence was handed down, the prosecution dropped a bombshell – gardaí believe the fraudster may still control some of the stolen money and suspect him of attempting to launder it here in Ireland. An investigation is underway. Colm Keena was in court for the sentencing and he explains Lynn’s crime, how he evaded justice for so long and what will happen now. Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by Declan Conlon.
Why spy fears have led to the downsizing of the Russian Embassy19:44For decades concerns were raised at Government level that the Russian Embassy in Dublin was an espionage hub, with the sheer scale of the Soviet diplomatic mission to the State prompting suspicions over spying.However, the war in Ukraine emboldened the Government to take action. Russian diplomats have been expelled, new visas refused and now the embassy’s staff in Dublin has been reduced from 30 to 15.This follows the refusal to grant Moscow permission to expand the Rathgar embassy on “national security” grounds.Crime and security correspondent Conor Gallagher explains why the Government has at last taken action. Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by Suzanne Brennan.
Cork drugs bust: Are Irish agents working for Mexico’s deadliest cartel?28:12Last week, a consignment of synthetic drugs, thought to be crystal meth worth €32.8 million, were seized in Cork Port. It is believed the shipment, which was destined for the Australian market, was owned by the Sinaloa cartel, Mexico’s deadliest drugs gang. Gardaí are now investigating whether a number of Irish men based in Cork and Kerry have been acting as agents for the cartel. So far, they have made two arrests. Irish Times Crime and Security editor Conor Lally reports. We also hear from Karol Suarez, a journalist based in Mexican City who explains how the Sinaloa cartel, often associated with the Netflix show Narcos, has become one of the most powerful and dangerous drug-trafficking gangs in the world.Presented by Sorcha Pollak.
Why Dublin's Metro is still a decade away - at least18:04On Monday, An Bord Pleanála met for its first hearing in 15 years into Dublin’s planned underground rail line. The €9.5 billion MetroLink, as it is now known, has been put on hold numerous times since it was first announced as the Metro West plan in 2005.The proposed underground line would run from north of Swords to Dublin Airport, then on to Ballymun, Glasnevin, O’Connell Street and St Stephen’s Green before terminating at Charlemont Street, with 16 stations in all.Minister for Transport Eamon Ryan has said he believes the long-awaited MetroLink will be granted planning permission before the end of this year and that construction will be completed by the early 2030s.Many Dubliners are worried about how the construction of this line, particularly close to the city centre, will disrupt their homes and livelihoods.However, as one of the only major cities in Europe without an underground transport system, Metrolink could be transformative for Dublin city and its residents in the long term, says Irish Times Dublin editor Olivia Kelly, who joins today’s episode of In the News.Presented by Sorcha Pollak. Produced by Declan Conlon.
'He must be fired immediately' - how landlord Marc Godart punishes employees for cooperating with the authorities30:45Previously on In the News, Irish Times Europe correspondent Naomi O’Leary explained how Dublin-based landlord Marc Godart deployed CCTV to monitor tenants in their homes, faced accusations of unlawful eviction and failed to pay compensation to former tenants as ordered by the Residential Tenancies Board.On today’s episode Naomi shares a new cache of audio files and documents that show how Luxembourger Godart treats his employees, including summary dismissal and fines for minor infractions.The documents also reveal attempts to establish new companies under the identities of people unconnected with Godart and his family to avoid public scrutiny of his property operations, and the offering of payment to workers to find people willing to allow the use of their identity to set up an Airbnb account.Also on the podcast: Those working for Godart are hired as independent contractors, and their contracts stipulate that Luxembourg law applies to their relationship with Godart’s companies.But as Claire Bruton, a barrister specialising in employment law, explains, the law is not on Godart’s side when it comes to these arrangements.Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by Declan Conlon.
New leads in mystery of missing Icelandic tourist18:35Jon Jonsson, 41, vanished in Dublin in 2019 while in Ireland to play poker. A father of four and a taxi driver in his native Iceland, he was travelling with his fiance.For some reason he left his hotel, The Bonnington, on a bright February afternoon; CCTV cameras capture him walking along the busy road. After the second sighting near the hotel, he vanishes. He didn’t know the area and had no friends in Ireland.To date, no trace of Jonsson has been found. Then this week gardaí, acting on information contained in anonymous letters, searched a park in nearby Santry. Crime and security editor Conor Lally explains this unusual missing persons case. Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by John Casey.
What is it like to visit the most dangerous country in the world?24:16Nearly two and half years since passed since the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan in after the US withdrew the last of its troops from the country. Since then, the country has grappled with a humanitarian crisis which has forced millions of Afghans abroad.Women’s rights and freedoms have been severely restricted since the Taliban takeover in 2021 and girls in Afghanistan can no longer attend school beyond sixth grade.Meanwhile, Taliban authorities have reportedly increased the arbitrary detention of journalists, human rights defenders and civil society activists while there have been repeated reports of extrajudicial killings and torture and brutal treatment.European countries, including Ireland, strongly advise against travel to the impoverished Asian country where the Islamic State terror group continues to launch lethal attacks against Shia minorities and the Taliban.However, a small number of tour operators are now offering trips to Afghanistan for adventurous travellers seeking a trip outside the norm. And while foreign visitors are strongly advised by their governments not to visit the country, some tour operators say bringing tourists to the country is beneficial for Afghan communities.Journalist Hannah McCarthy discusses the small number of risk-taking tourists who are ignoring the travel advice and choosing to the visit the most dangerous country in the world.Presented by Sorcha Pollak. Produced by Suzanne Brennan.
Why activists threw soup at the Mona Lisa25:50On January 28th two activists from Riposte Alimentaire (Food Counterattack) threw soup at the Mona Lisa at the Louvre in Paris.Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece is safely behind glass and no real harm was done but the act made headlines around the world. So does shock coverage matter more than the message?And are activists, particularly climate activists, about to get a great deal more radical in their protests as the crisis deepens and becomes ever more immediate?Dana Fisher, director of the Center for Environment, Community, & Equity at American University in Washington and author of Saving Ourselves: From Climate Shocks to Climate Action explains why protesters behave the way they do and what turns an interested bystander into a radical activist.Presented by Bernice Harrison. Produced by John Casey.
Who is behind the wave of arson attacks on migrant housing?23:59Since 2018, there have been 23 arson attacks with a suspected anti-immigration motivation on buildings earmarked, or just rumoured for use, as accommodation or asylum seekers. Thirteen of these attack have taken place in the past year.A flurry of arrests and search operations targeting those behind these arson attacks have taken place since early February. However, at the same time, the attacks have continued. The question on the minds of politicians, Gardaí and the public is, who is behind these attacks?Is it a centrally organised far-right group, a loose network of anti-immigrant activists or just individual local criminals incited by online misinformation and racist rhetoric?Crime and security correspondent Conor Gallagher discusses who is behind the wave of arson attacks across the country and what can be done, before someone is seriously injured, or killed, in the next fire.Presented by Sorcha Pollak. Produced by Aideen Finnegan and Suzanne Brennan.