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TD shuns garda protection after threat to family

A TD who was subjected to a kidnap threat has revealed he refused round-the clock-garda protection following the alleged threat to his family.

The Galway West TD says he believed he was targeted in an attempt to silence him.

The incident occurred last month after a local man told gardai he had been approached at gunpoint by two men who wanted access to his property in order to monitor the Keaveney family.

The men were allegedly from the Provisional IRA, according to the Fianna Fail TD. He revealed how he was "shocked and appalled" after becoming aware of the incident.

children

Mr Keaveney said he rang Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams following the incident.

"I told him somebody was using his franchise to threaten my children and my family. I wouldn't have been worried apart from the fact that the data these two people had, they knew my children's name. They knew the location of their school," he told Galway Bay fm.

Mr Keaveney said he was trying to understand what might have motivated the threat.

"I'm not a legitimate target for a tiger kidnapping. I don't have that money, I simply don't. And tiger kidnappings are strategically planned out to a great degree. But there is something very sinister in this," he said.

"Essentially they were looking to send a message that they were prepared to draw into a degree of criminality, threatening and intimidation. A revolver was used in the engagement with that neighbour," he added.

The Galway politician said he is currently engaging with gardai on all matters he has raised locally and nationally.

"The Tuam gardai and the National Crime Unit are people who are responsible for getting to the bottom of that cause. I have my own suspicions. I firmly believe I've been targeted, my family have been targeted to silence me on a probable cause that I may have involved myself in my community over the course of the last couple of years, but that's not for me to say," he told the Keith Finnegan Show.

culprits

Mr Keaveney said he had refused garda protection following the incident, saying he believed the culprits wanted to see him forced to live under constant observation.

"To be fair I don't believe that this is an action of people where I live.

"I've never been threatened like this in my past, there is no cause that justifies this.

"Really the message here was to clearly have the guards envelope my life. To sign a protocol where I accept there is a threat to my family or myself and really that was an inconvenience that they wanted to precipitate on my life," he added.

Mr Keaveney said gardai were working with a full description of the two men involved in the incident and had collected up to 80 hours of CCTV footage from around the country that fit the description of the vehicle involved.

hnews@herald.ie


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