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Mr. Michael McDowell T.D.

Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform

Dear Minister McDowell,
I note that the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity have requested you to carry out an investigation into the allegations of rape, abuse etc levelled against them by Kathy O'Beirne in her book Kathy's Story and in her radio interview with Vincent Browne on RTE 1 on Wednesday 22 June. I note that they state that Kathy O'Beirne was never in one of their Magdalen Laundries. Also I see a statement from Voices Emerge which indicates that all four of the religious congregations who ran Magdalen Laundries have stated that Kathy O'Beirne was never with them. Her story appears to be a fantasy from beginning to end.

For nearly 6 years now I have been opposing a somewhat similar fantasy  i.e. false allegations of child abuse and specifically false allegations of child murder - the latter being directed mainly against the Christian Brothers. I am a former De La Salle Brother myself.

I have spoken to the Gardai on a number of occasions and they twice sent files to the DPP regarding prosecutions under the Prevention of Incitement to Hatred Act. The Gardai were supportive but the DPP turned down the cases. Both involved allegations of child killing (in the Irish Times and on TV3) at times when no boy died of any cause. The Incitement to Hatred Act seems to be worthless.

I also contacted the Irish Human Rights Commission without success. The attached is my main letter to them dated 15 March 2004. I realised from my one official meeting with them in February 2004 that they intended to turn me down on the basis that

My letter is framed to deal with those points. It also includes a list of 10 allegations of child murder (and related atrocities) made in the media. I refer to the child killing claims as "Murder of the Undead" because in most cases no child actually died at the relevant period. The Human Rights Commission just found other reasons to refuse to investigate. (They said it was a matter for the DPP and also it was not in their Three Year Plan!).

I understand that the Government has recently set up a simplified Tribunals system to investigate matters of public importance. Allegations of child murder are  matters of public importance in their own right. Also they are being made by the same people who are claiming that the Church engaged in systematic sexual abuse of children.

A tribunal to investigate these matters should not be too complex. The people who made "Murder of the Undead" allegations should be asked to name the boys they claim were killed by the Brothers. The accusers include:

These people have been treated with kid gloves by their colleagues and friends in the media and have never been asked to name the alleged victims of child killing. A Tribunal of Enquiry set up by the Government, could demand that they do so. It would not cost millions in legal fees either! Perhaps it could usefully be combined with an investigation into Kathy O'Beirne's allegations. The elements common to both are  paranoia, lunatic lies and anti-clericalism.

Best Wishes

Rory Connor


15 March 2004

Gerry Finn
Human Rights Commission
False Allegations of Child Murder and Child Abuse

Mr. Finn,
Regarding our meeting a couple of weeks ago, I got the impression that you feel I do not have sufficient interest in the above issues to request an investigation by the Human Rights Commission pursuant to Section 9 (1) (b) of the Human Rights Commission Act 2000 (Section 9 (3) of  Act refers). It is true that no one has made allegations of child abuse against me and that I left the De La Salle Brothers in 1969.

However my main interest is in the "blood libel" allegations made by the media i.e. allegations that the Christian Brothers murdered boys; these allegations usually relate to a time when no boy died of any cause. (I have referred to these as "Murder of the Undead" allegations and also as "victimless murders".) Is it necessary for someone to have such an allegation made against him personally in order to qualify as an interested party under the Act? If that is the case then anti-Semites could resurrect medieval blood libels against Jews in the knowledge that the Human Rights Commission will not act. These libels typically consisted of accusations that un-named Jews had murdered un-named Christian boys. I assume that if the Irish Times, the Sunday Independent and TV3 were publishing such libels and getting away with it (i.e. the authorities refused to do anything), then any Jewish person would be regarded as having sufficient "interest in the matter concerned" (as per the above-mentioned Act).

Is it conceivable that the Human Rights Commission would insist that only a Jewish Rabbi  who had personally been targeted, could request an investigation?

I made some further enquiries regarding libel. I understand that it is not possible for the Christian Brothers as an organisation, to sue for libel. Only individual Brothers can do so. No individual Brothers have been targeted with blood libel claims. In fact these are unique criminal allegations in that both "criminal" and "victim" are non-existent. I had assumed that our anti-clerics were so lazy and so self-confident that they did not bother to check out death certificates or dates on headstones, in order to construct a "plausible" libel. This is probably true of people like John Kelly and Gerry Kelly ........... However I suspect that Patsy McGarry, Brighid McLaughlin and Louis Lentin are well aware of the legal position and of the difficulty of taking libel actions against them.

A prosecution for Incitement to Hatred is the obvious alternative to libel. However our Director of Public Prosecutions prefers to criminalise bus drivers who engage in slanging matches with black passengers. He also succeeded in getting a man sentenced to two months in jail for verbally abusing a Romanian worker. (A jail sentence for a verbal attack when people have got suspended sentences for manslaughter!). However he feels that false allegations of child murder do not constitute a breach of the Prevention of Incitement to Hatred Act. The DPP is part of the problem not the solution. (I understand that the Brothers made a complaint about an article in News of the World in September 2002, which alleged murder by the Christian Brothers in Letterfrack. They had no more success than I had. It is not surprising that a few months later the Sunday Independent felt free to accuse the Brothers of mass murder at Letterfrack).

In summary I am requesting that the Commission investigates allegations of murder made against the Christian Brothers (and other related allegations of child abuse) as follows:

1. Patsy McGarry's article in the Irish Times on 25 September 1999 quoting Patrick Walsh of SOCA who claimed to have attended the funerals of boys killed by the Brothers. No boy died while Patrick Walsh was in Artane so his claim is not even "honest" hysteria. Mick Waters of SOCA UK wrote to the Irish Times on 17 October 1999 to express his support for Patsy McGarry. This gentleman still retains his position in SOCA UK, as indeed does Patrick Walsh in SOCA. (I have seen the latter quoted as a spokesman for SOCA on several occasions).

2. Louis Lentin's programme "Our Boys" on TV3 in October 1999 that was repeated in November 2000, quoting Gerry Kelly (then head of the "Alliance for the Healing of Institutional Abuse") who also claimed to have attended funerals of murdered boys. Again no boy died while Gerry Kelly was at Artane.
Gerry Kelly also slandered Nora Wall (see articles in Ireland on Sunday dated 25 July and 1st August 1999). Moreover, a few weeks before they first broadcast Our Boys, TV3 were forced to apologise to the Bishop of Cloyne for libeling him. (This apology was buried by the media - I found out about it myself when I rang the Bishop's office to ask how his legal case was going!).

3. John Kelly of SOCA who told me on the steps of the Pro Cathedral and in front of several journalists, that there were mass graves in Artane and other institutions (quoted in the Irish Independent on 25 November 2002)

4. Brighid McLaughlin quoting Mannix Flynn in the Sunday Independent on 22 December 2002, that there had been a "holocaust" at Letterfrack with boys buried all over the place and also that the Gardai at Clifden had uncovered a "massive paedophile ring" which ran "from the low minions right up to the top".  In January 2003, a few weeks after he made those allegations, Mr. Flynn was elected a member of Aosdana, the association of creative artists and he has recently been made Director of the Irish Museum of Modern Art Is this in spite of, or because of, his vicious lies?

5. Mary Raftery who claimed in the TV programme "States of Fear" and in her book "Suffer the Little Children" that there were "deaths in mysterious and unexplained circumstances" in Artane. She failed to mention that the one case which she quoted had been the subject of a coroner's report and when her "witness" gave three separate and contradictory accounts, she tried to resolve the contradictions by claiming - on Today With Pat Kenny 22/11/99 - that there was more than one such death (i.e. due to a fall from a staircase). See letter from Brother M. Reynolds in the Irish Times on 22 December 1999.

 In a letter to the Irish Times on 13 January 2000 Mary Raftery claimed that the death of the boy was the subject of an ongoing Garda investigation. When the Garda Press Office confirmed that this was not the case, Mary Raftery's response (on Eamon Dunphy's The Last Word) was "This is complete rubbish. This is rubbish. This is rubbish" (see Letters page on 26 January 2000). It is clear that she wants the Christian Brothers to have murdered a boy in order to justify her own hatred.

6. Mary Raftery also made thuggish allegations against Sister Stanislaus Kennedy, accusing her of failing to act when a social worker told her a boy was being sexually abused. (She also accused Sister Stanislaus of berating civil servants at a meeting because they failed to give sufficient credit to the Church for its social work). Sister Stan was subjected to sustained and vicious attack in the media until the social worker wrote to the Irish Times to confirm that, at the time  he spoke to her, he himself had no idea that sex abuse was involved and that he felt that Sister Stan had done everything possible for the children. Edward Murphy's letter is in the Irish Times Letters Page on 22 December 1999. It did not make the news pages. Of course Mary Raftery made no attempt to apologise. (Nor did she apologise when the three civil servants involved in the meeting told Breda O'Brien that no such episode had taken place).

7. Mary Raftery also claimed that a boy who said he had been sexually abused by Brother Joseph O’Connor, waited around the Mater Hospital when Brother O’Connor was dying and then went in to take a look at the body to make sure he was dead. Brother Joseph O'Connor did not die in the Mater Hospital. Again there was no apology from Ms. Raftery. (Brother Joseph O'Connor was the Brother responsible for the Artane Boys Band. Sister Stanislaus helped to set up the first childcare course for lay people in Ireland. I assume this is why Mary Raftery attacked them.)

8. Liam Reid’s article in the Irish Times on 27 November 2003, which deliberately repeats the blood libel about the death of William Delaney in 1970. Following a disgusting media campaign in 2001 the Evening Herald was forced to admit that the post mortem on the exhumed body of William Delaney had found that he died of natural causes (Evening Herald, 27 April 2001).  However, having howled obscenities at the Christian Brothers, the media dropped the issue like a shot. Liam Reid is depending on people having short memories.

In December 2003 the Royal College of Surgeon’s published a study on clerical sexual  abuse. This pointed out that the Irish Times used the term “paedophile priest” 322 times between August 1993 and August 2000. Apart from the term “paedophile farmer” which was used 5 times, no other occupation was linked to paedophilia in reports. (I understand that the references to “paedophile farmer” occurred when a social worker wrote to the Irish Times to enquire why it never used such terms and a farmer then wrote in to protest!). The Irish Times is anti-clerical in the same way other publications are anti-Semitic or racist.

9. Bruce Arnold’s article about Letterfrack in the Irish Independent on 18 June 2003 which claimed that “boys are buried in the woods as well”. Garda Superintendent Tony O’Dowd told the Irish Catholic (9 and 16 January 2003) “there was no evidence available that would suggest that foul play led to the deaths of anyone buried inside or outside of the cemetery at the old industrial school of Letterfrack”. Mr. Arnold should be asked to produce his evidence.

10. Finally though it did not involve a murder allegation I would request the Commission to question Paul Williams of the Sunday World about his repulsive allegations against Nora Wall on 11 July 1999 i.e. that she had procured children for Fr. Brendan Smyth. Former residents and a "counselor" - all un-named- are quoted in support of the allegations. Who are these people and whom else have they made allegations against?

Nora Wall won damages against the Sunday World. However the story of her "victory" was buried by the media. I myself saw it by accident, in a short article in Phoenix on 8 November 2002, which failed to mention the nature of the libel or the name of the journalist responsible. Paul Williams is now Crime Editor for the Sunday World. I think he was Crime Correspondent in July 1999, which suggests that he has been promoted since the libel!

Normal legal procedures in this country are incapable of dealing with our sociopath journalists. Some of the people responsible for implementing these procedures are themselves deeply compromised. (I refer specifically to the staff of the DPP and to two judges - see section 2 of my "Appendix to Letter dated 21st January 2004)). That is why I am requesting an investigation under Section 9 of the Human Rights Commission Act 2000.

Support from Organisations
However if the Human Rights Commission still feels that I personally do not have sufficient interest to request an investigation please note that I have spoken to Florence Horsman Hogan founder of the organisation "Let Our Voices Emerge" (LOVE) and Mr. Tom Hayes of "Alliance". Alliance exists to help genuine victims of child abuse whereas LOVE is mainly for people who have been falsely accused. Both are vehemently opposed those who make false allegations.

Mrs. Horsman Hogan has confirmed that she and her organization support my request for an investigation. You can contact her at 10 Seaview Wood, Shankhill Co. Dublin to confirm this. Her telephone numbers are 01 282 1414 and 086 8762148. Her e mail address is

 Mr. Tom Hayes is aware of the problem of false allegations by individuals and journalists and is sympathetic to my request. However this matter needs to be placed before the committee of Alliance for a decision. If this is a major issue I suggest that the Human Rights Commission await the decision of Alliance. However I think I have already demonstrated that I have a sufficient interest in this matter to request an investigation.

Yours Sincerely

Rory Connor

P.S. you should already have all the newspaper articles etc that I quote. However to simplify things I will try to copy them again, label them in line with the above numbered paragraphs and leave them into you before 11am on Tuesday 16 March.