Veronica Guerin-the One Who Stood Up

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Veronica Guerin-The one who stood up
Veronica Guerin (5 July 1958 – 26 June 1996) was an Irish journalist who was murdered on the 26th June 1996, on the Naas Road, Dublin, as a result of her work as a crime journalist specialising in the drug world of Dublin. Guerin was born and brought up in Artane where she lived with her four siblings and her parents, Christopher and Bernadette. She acquired the nickname "Ronnie" during her childhood and she received her education in the Catholic schools of Dublin's north side. She became an accomplished athlete in camogie, soccer and basketball. Soccer, in fact, remained a lifelong passion of Guerin's; she was a fanatic supporter of England's Manchester United professional soccer team. One of her most prised possessions was a picture of her and the famous United player Eric Cantona, which was taken on a trip to Old Trafford. Guerin married Graham Turley who she had a son Cathal with. She studied accountancy at Trinity College Dublin and on her graduation she was hired by her father at his company. After her father passed away three years after her appointment at the company she left and started a new career in public relations. She started a new firm in 1983 which was run by her for seven years. After leaving the firm she took up journalism, first as a business writer for Dublin's Sunday Business Post and then as a news reporter for the city's Sunday Tribune. Then in 1994, Guerin became an investigative reporter for the Sunday Independent, the largest-circulation weekend newspaper in Ireland. This move signalled not only Guerin’s subsequent rise to somewhat fame in Ireland but also led to the sequence of events that ended in her eventually been murdered.

Her murder along with detective Jerry Mc Cabe’s murder three weeks earlier sparked the Irish government and the Irish people into life on tackling the war on drugs head on and without fear. For years she had mounted a high-profile war against Ireland's drug barons on the pages of the Sunday Independent. Guerin tackled, without fear and without regard for her own safety, the drug kings of Dublin. The work she was involved in was obviously extremely dangerous and her life was put in danger on a number of occasions In October 1994, Guerin was subjected to her first incident of violence to stem from one of her stories. Two bullets where shot through her house window as she was playing with her son at home. This incident came a month after she had written a newspaper article on the drug baron “the general” after he was shot dead in his car. The second major incident to arise out of her news reporting was a very serious and life treating one, in January 1995, a masked gunman burst into her home when she answered the door and pointed a handgun at her head but lowered it and shot her in the thigh. Guerin suspected that the gunman was hired to “hit” her because of an article that she had written about the theft of £4.4 million from a supposedly secure depot near Dublin airport. This was the largest cash robbery in Irish history. (Encyclopedia.com)

When Guerin was released from hospital after been shot she went along with her husband to every crime boss in Dublin she knew and handed them a letter letting them know that she was unafraid and unwilling to give up the fight on drugs. It was a statement of intent. A security system was installed at her home after the attack and the guards gave her 24 hour escort. They accompanied her where ever she went but Guerin, after a few days, stopped the guards accompanying her, as she felt it hindered her work as she was unable to talk to people and get the information she needed for her articles. (Film: Veronica Guerin) Then in September 1995, Guerin paid a visit to a horse farm owned by the notorious John Gilligan, a known leading player in Dublin’s underworld. She confronted him about how he had amassed such a fortune and good lifestyle without been able to show where he had...
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