Sinn Féin TD David Cullinane walks out of Dáil during vote on Special Criminal Court
The Sinn Féin party does not support the fight against serious crime, according to Fine Gael Senator John Cummins who was speaking after Sinn Féin TDs walked out of the Dáil during a vote on the Special Criminal Court this week.
Senator Cummins said, “The issue of the Special Criminal Court came before the Oireachtas this week when my party colleague, Minister for Justice Heather Humphreys, tabled Dáil and Seanad motions to renew the Offences Against the State Act and the Criminal Justice Act for another year.
Sinn Féin have long sought to undermine the Special Criminal Court and have failed to support its extension in the past by abstaining from Oireachtas votes. But this year they went one further, and in an extraordinary move the entire party, including David Cullinane, walked out of the Dáil en-masse.
“The Special Criminal Court protects Irish citizens against threats posed by terrorism and organised crime. It is quite clear that David Cullinane and his party colleagues were following orders from Sinn Féin central command not to support the motions which is disturbing to say the least.
“It is 25 years since Detective Garda Jerry McCabe and journalist Veronica Guerin were both gunned down in a horrific summer in 1996. Those culpable were brought before the Special Criminal Court and the court has had an instrumental role in the targeting the Dundon, Hutch and Kinahan gangs. It is currently being used in the trail of those involved in the abduction and torture of Kevin Lunney, therefore it is extremely disturbing that Sinn Féin chose to walk out of our national parliament during a vote on extending the Special Criminal Court.
“This tells us that while Sinn Féin purport to be a changed party, in reality they are the same party they were 25 years ago. They don’t stand for law and order and cannot be trusted to preserve the security of our State. The Special Criminal Court exists to protect us all from the persistent threat of organised crime gangs and terrorist groups.
“Sinn Féin will no doubt attempt to vilify those like me who highlight this matter and say there are more important things to focus on, however nothing is more important than ensuring our communities are protected from the most violent of criminals. It is clear from their actions this week, Sinn Féin stand against the Special Criminal Court, the judiciary, law and order and even more poignantly, the families of all the victims who have witnessed those who took their loved ones brought and prosecuted before the same court,” Senator Cummins concluded.