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Apple’s tax figures, clamping targets and the EPP meeting in Dublin, all in today’s Daily Wire

Steven Carroll Fri, Mar 7
 
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  • 09:21
    Good morning and welcome to today’s Daily Wire on irishtimes.com.
    It’s Steven Carroll here to keep you up to date with today’s news which is again focusing heavily on developments in the Ukraine and more specifically Crimea. Two of the players in that ongoing situation, Yulia Tymoshenko and Vitali Klitschko, are in Dublin for the European People’s Party Congress at the National Convention Centre so I'll keep you posted on developments from there.
    But as it’s Friday we’ll also try to keep ya’ll entertained as well as informed as the clock ticks down to quitting time and the weekend.
  • 09:24
    Apple's tax situation makes a return to the front of today's Irish Times print edition, with Mark Paul reporting that the tech giant paid $36 million in tax on profits of $7.11 billion at its Irish unit. Read more on that one here
  • 09:26
    Olivia Kelly reports that Dublin Street Parking Services, which takes care of clamping in the city, has set a target of clamping 60,000 vehicles a year. If the target is reached, staff will receive a bonus of $2,000. Isn't that nice.
  • 09:29
    Meanwhile, Arthur Beesley has a new line on the Rehab Group, and specifically on the involvement of Angela Kerins's husband in a company that dealt with the section 39 charity/company (depending on how you look at it).  More from Arthur here.
  • 09:29
    And here's the frontpage itself
    And here's the frontpage itself
  • 09:33
    Elsewhere, The Sun leads on potential travel chaos arising from industrial action at Aer Lingus. The backpage reveals the injured Damien Duff is likely to be cut adrift by Fulham when his contract ends in June.  
  • 09:34
    The Irish Examiner reports that 560 suicides between 2008 and 2012 can be directly attributed to the recession, citing a report prepared for the Oireachtas Health Committee.  
  • 09:35
    The Irish Independent says giant windfarm projects are being shelved in the midlands region, while the Herald tells of a 'Gun Victim's Kidnap Ordeal'
  • 09:37
    The Irish Daily Mail reports on a man who attempted to rape a woman as she slept in her bed having his conviction quashed.  
  • 09:40
    The British papers are dominated by fresh revelations about the death of Stephen Lawrence 21 years ago. Hard not to feel sorry for his family and the way they have been treated. More questions for the Met Police too. Here's a Telegraph piece on that story.  
  • 09:42
  • 09:43
  • 09:44
  • 09:47
  • 09:50
    Commuters travelling on the Longford to Dublin this morning fell victim to a bit of rail rage this morning.  Gardaí have arrested two men who pulled the emergency cord and smashed windows on the 5.40am train, which ground to a halt near Leixlip. More on that from Sorcha Pollak  here.
  • 09:53
    Following up on Suzanne Lynch's Tweet I posted a few minutes ago - Bono as a representative of his One campaign is to tell the EPP meeting that action is needed in European law to introduce public registers of the ownership of “phantom firms” and off-shore companies and trusts. Hmmm...
  • 09:56
    This man has denied being the inventor of the Bitcoin:  http://www.irishtimes.com/business/sectors/financial-services/man-denies-being-bitcoin-inventor-amid-media-frenzy-1.1716288
    This man has denied being the inventor of the Bitcoin:  http://www.irishtimes.com/business/sectors/financial-services/man-denies-being-bitcoin-inventor-amid-media-frenzy-1.1716288
  • 09:59
    Many Irish people I've spoken to this week assume victory in our penultimate Six Nations game is a given and have turned attention to St Patrick's weekend in Paris. However, Joe Schmidt is urging patience. Here's Gerry Thornley's report on that, which also features a video of our rugby correspondent and Gavin Cummiskey discussing the clash.
  • 09:59
  • 10:11
  • 10:13
    Interesting post there from Adrian Kavanagh on the number of women contesting the local elections, Fianna Fail and Fine Gael still have large gaps between the number of male and female candidates.  
  • 10:13
  • 10:16

    Here's a piece by Tom Lyons on the ECB not releasing one of the bailout letters to Gavin Sheridan. "The European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly has said the  European Central Bank  has “wasted an opportunity for openness and transparency” by refusing the release the November 2010 letter from it to the Irish government that allegedly bounced  Irelandinto the bailout."

  • 10:21

    Reuters has just filed a piece quoting Vladimir Putin's spokesman, who says his efforts to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine are being met with no understanding.  

    "Regardless of all the efforts of our president, his readiness to explain Russia's position practically on a daily basis, we still hit a wall of no understanding," Peskov said in comments due to broadcast on state television Rossiya 24 on Sunday.


    "It is rather sad and what is worse is that it is very bad from the point of view of possible repercussions." He added Moscow was not orchestrating events in Ukraine. "Quite the opposite," he said.

  • 10:32

    Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney has said there is "nothing surprising" about the miniscule rate of tax paid by Apple on its profits in Ireland. More here


    “This isn’t a new story...there is nothing surprising here.”  

  • 10:33
    What is the EPP and why is it in Dublin this week? Europe Correspondent Suzanne Lynch explains...
  • 10:34
    Enda Kenny introduced to delegates at the EPP conference as "a great leader of Ireland and committed European"
  • 10:37
    Guardian report here on Birmingham City FC owner Carson Yeung being sentenced to six years in prison for laundering $93 million
  • 10:38
  • 10:39

    A Malaysian court convicted opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim  of sodomy today, overturning his acquittal two years ago in a ruling that his supporters and international human rights groups say was politically influenced and aimed at ending his career.


    More on that here

  • 10:43

    Can't say the prospect of an Irish rival to The Hangover excites me greatly but The Stag earns a respectable three stars from Donald Clarke in today's edition of The Ticket.


    Tara Brady interviews one of the main men from the film, Andrew Scott, here

  • 10:46
  • 10:46
    Every little helps in the lead up to an election, Emer.  
  • 10:47
  • 10:52

    Speech in from Department of Justice on Alan Shatter's response to a bill from his former party colleague Denis Naughten on incest.  

    Mr Shatter said: "To put matters in perspective, it is important to say that, as the offence of incest is narrowly defined, incest legislation is much less used than other sexual offences legislation to prosecute familial sexual abuse. I am informed that between 2003 and 2011 inclusive, court proceedings for incest offences were commenced in 12 cases. There were 8 convictions in the same period and only one of these was for incest by a female.      

     
    "Of course, I accept, so far as legislation on the Statute Book is concerned, that there is a gender anomaly - for historical reasons - in the penalties for incest. The maximum penalty for incest by a male has been increased twice - in 1993 and 1995 - and is currently life imprisonment. The maximum penalty for incest by a female has been 7 years since enactment of the Punishment of Incest Act 1908. Accordingly, I have no difficulty, in principle, with this Private Member’s Bill and the Government is not opposing its reading at second stage."    

  • 10:59

    Press release just landed - Spin City:

    Fine Gael Wicklow TD and Candidate for Ireland South, Simon Harris, has said that the EPP Congress, which is being held in Dublin, illustrates the benefit of electing a strong team of Fine Gael MEPs to the largest political grouping in the European Parliament.


    "As we have seen at the event in Dublin over the last two days, the EPP includes 12 EU heads of state, 13 members of the European Commission and 73 member parties across 39 countries," he said.

  • 11:02

    Slightly scary Telegraph report here on a schoolboy in England who was planning a 'new Columbine' and had a room full of weapons and Nazi propoganda

  • 11:03
  • 11:04
  • 11:05
  • 11:08

    Oscar Pistorius seems to be fond of guns. His ex-girlfriend told the court today he carried a gun "all the time" and once fired it out of a car’s sunroof soon after a policeman stopped the car they were in for speeding.


    Latest from that trial here

  • 11:13

    Interesting take on banks/taxpayers from Sarah Wagenknecht, the  deputy leader of Germany’s Die Linke party.  

    "Europe’s biggest problem is that it seems to expect taxpayers to pay for bank speculation. This is a problem with three aspects: the dominance of banks, the Eu  and German chancellor Angela Merkel."

  • 11:15
  • 11:24

    Reuters has this report on a man from California who lost $500,000 in 17 hours gambling at a Las Vegas casino and says he was so drunk he could not remember the episode after waking up in his hotel room.  


    He's filing a lawsuit seeking to erase his losses. Good luck with that...  

  • 11:26
  • 11:32
    By studying trick roping as a science, a French physicist has taught himself to lasso like a rodeo veteran. BBC report here
  • 11:34
    Here's more on HMV planning to open a new store on Grafton Street, with 35 staff being sought.
  • 11:41

    How humbling.  


    Ahead of their 7th v 17th place clash with West Brom this weekend, Manchester United manager David Moyes has used a club magazine sent to season ticket holders to thank the club's fans for their loyalty in what he admits has been a "difficult" first season.

    "I have absolutely no doubt we will see great winning sides here again."


    How reassuring...More here from the BBC

  • 11:43

    BBC football also reporting that Celtic have beaten Liverpool and Everton to the signing of 13-year-old goalkeeper who already stands 6ft 1in and is playing for the Hamilton Academicals under-20s.  


    http://www.bbc.com/sport/0/football/26480459

  • 11:47

    British business secretary Vince Cable is expected to tell a Lib Dem conference today that that Eurosceptics are putting the union with Scotland at risk by indulging in nationalist rhetoric.  

    His party leader, deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, is to engage in two debates with  Ukip’s Nigel Farage before the European elections, one on TV and one on radio.

  • 11:51

    Piece in the Telegraph on the beer bubble and how the price of a pint has risen by 2,000 per cent in four decades.  

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/10682032/Beer-bubble-how-price-of-a-pint-has-risen-twenty-fold.html

  • 12:01

    Sinn Fein TD Dessie Ellis says quads and dirt bikes are being used by some to torment communities. He pushing the  Misuse of Motor Vehicles (Public Spaces) Bill 2012 today.  

    "Many public representatives will be aware of the recent growth in popularity of mini-bikes, dirt bikes and quad bikes over the last few years and will have had to deal with the problems arising from their use in residential areas and public spaces such as noise pollution, damages to public and private property as well as in extreme cases endangerment of the public and potentially injuries to both bystanders and those operating the vehicles irresponsibly."

     

  • 12:03
  • 12:13

    The Limerick City of Culture project (remember that?) is seeking a new director. Details here.

    Patricia Ryan resigned from the position in January, alleging her voicemail messages were hacked after news of her intention to step down was leaked online before she had informed anyone outside of her family.

  • 12:18
  • 12:36
  • 12:43

    Labour picking just one horse in the race for seats in Ireland South in the European Elections. Party leader and deputy leader Eamon Gilmore and Joan Burton travelling to Cork on Sunday to preside over Phil Prendergast's selection at a party convention.  

    The following people are seeking nomination to the subs panel (which is how Prendergast got the gig in the first place after Alan Kelly was elected to the Dail):


    · Cllr. Robert Ireton   (Wexford)

    · Adrian Kane (Cork South Central)

    · Cllr. Seán O hArgáin (Kilkenny)

    · Seamus Ryan (Clare)

    · Cllr. Tom Shortt (Limerick)

    · Bill Stokes (Wexford)

    · Declan Walsh (Cork)

  • 12:44

    The Dublin Airport Authority has initiated a High Court case aimed at preventing next week’s proposed strike by members of SIPTU at Dublin Airport.

    The proposed industrial action, in which SIPTU members plan to hold four-hour stoppages at Dublin, Cork and Shannon on Friday March 14th as the St Patrick’s holiday weekend begins, arises from the long-running dispute over cuts in pension benefits at Aer Lingus and the DAA.


    More to come on that shortly...

  • 12:46
  • 12:48
    Here's the full story on DAA taking its efforts to prevent a strike by Siptu workers to the High Court.
  • 12:49

    Here's some lunchtime reading:


    Aisling ‘Ais the Bash’ Daly is 115lbs of highly disciplined power, strength and fighting ability. And she is determined to demonstrate her abilities on other world class talent at the Ultimate Fighting Championship

  • 12:58

    Olivia O'Leary's column today is on Enda Kenny - his fondness for elections and what he is doing in power that might see Fine Gael grab a second term in government for the first time.    

    "So does it matter to the party that he doesn’t seem to have any vision, any clear view of the Ireland he would like to help create, that he doesn’t seem confident enough of his own views to stand up and debate them with other party leaders on television, that the only speech of his which could be called inspiring was his brave attack on the Vatican for trying to frustrate attempts to investigate claims of child sex abuse?"

  • 13:05
    Bono has taken the stage at the EPP congress in the Convention Centre. U2 singer came out to a Coldplay song and is speaking about the Irish, the Oscars, modesty, Enda Kenny and international aid.  
  • 13:05
  • 13:08
    Here's Sean Penn  presenting the award for the top human rights defender to a member of a Pakistani women’s group in Dublin this morning. More on than <a href='http://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/sean-penn-presents-human-rights-awar
    Here's Sean Penn  presenting the award for the top human rights defender to a member of a Pakistani women’s group in Dublin this morning. More on than
    13:09
  • 13:11
  • 13:14

    Press release from Fianna Fáil TD Timmy Dooley calling on the Government to rethink plans to send Alex White to Moscow for St Patrick’s Day "in light of Russia’s current aggression towards the Ukraine".  

    “If the Government is genuine in its condemnation of what is happening in the Ukraine and Crimea it will rethink Minister White’s Moscow visit immediately.”  

  • 13:16

    A man found apparently asleep at the wheel of a car with its engine running and a smell of alcohol coming from him must have understood what a garda meant when told he was arresting him for being “drunk in charge” of a vehicle, the High Court has ruled.

    Read that one here

  • 13:25
    Now that Bono has warmed up the European People's Party crowd with a wide ranging speech (story to follow), Angela Merkel is taking to the stage.  
  • 13:29
    Merkel thanks Enda Kenny (who she is supposed to be doing a press conference with at Government buildings in a few minutes) for hosting the EPP and says Europe has shown it can be successful even when in crisis.  
  • 13:36
  • 13:54

    Bankers are finding new ways of getting around the horror that greets their bonuses by receiving allowances to top up their pay.  

    In response, EU  lawmakers are to consider toughening up the region’s rules.  

    More here

  • 14:05
  • 14:07
  • 14:07
  • 14:24

    Russia  has today accused the EU  of taking an “extremely unconstructive position” by freezing talks on easing visa barriers that complicate travel between Russia and the EU over Ukraine.


    “Russia will not accept the language of sanctions and threats” and will retaliate if sanctions are imposed, the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement today about agreements reached at an emergency EU summit yesterday.

    More on that here

  • 14:25
  • 14:30

    Fair play to Turkey's president who has ruled out any ban on Facebook and YouTube after prime minister Tayyip Erdogan said the sites might be blocked to stop his foes anonymously posting audio recordings purportedly exposing corruption in his inner circle.


    Reuters report on that here

  • 14:47

     


    Bleak


    A male auxiliary nurse who sexually assaulted a “hopelessly defenceless” elderly patient was today handed a five-year jail term.


    More on that case here

  • 14:49
    Here's a take on Bono's address to the EPP gathering in the Convention Centre earlier - he says it was the Irish people rather than the troika who bailed out the State.  
  • 14:51
  • 14:53

    More on that Elvis candidate - who got 57 to the Lib Dem candidate's 56 votes.  


    "As part of his manifesto Mr Bishop had pledged to tighten laws on hand gun ownership and legalise brothels with a 30% discount for OAPs.

    "He also said he wanted to scrap the high speed HS2 train because it would destroy Nottingham's greenbelt and pledged to stop any more tram routes being constructed in the city."

  • 15:00
    Report  by Suzanne Lynch  on Jean Claude Juncker being confirmed as the EPP's candidate for the EU Commission presidency.
  • 15:02
    More sad news here. A woman who lost her husband to suicide has received a €500 insurance settlement.  The insurer refused to pay out on a mortgage protection policy worth €220,000 because it had lapsed on July 29th, four days before he died.
  • 15:07

    The Free Legal Advice Centre has today said consumers were robbed of many of their rights and protections across the financial sector during the boom. Flac points to “soft-touch” regulation, excessive bureaucracy and the authorities’ obsession with maximising the tax take from property transactions as evidence.  

    Conor Pope reports on that here

  • 15:08
  • 15:13

    Alan Shatter, in his role as Minister for Defence, has announced the commencement of a new recruitment campaign for the permanent and reserve Defence Forces.


    "The Defence Forces plan to induct up to 400 personnel to the Permanent Defence Force (both Army and Navy) and up to 500 personnel to the Reserve  Defence Force (both Army Reserve and Naval Service Reserve) in 2014," according to a release from the department.  


     

    military.ie/careers/
  • 15:33

    The former Metropolitan Police commissioner Lord Paul Condon has today denied authorising undercover police officers to target the family of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence.

    Condon, who held the top post at Scotland Yard between 1993 and 2000, did back plans for a public inquiry into the activities of police moles following a damning report by barrister Mark Ellison which found that an undercover officer was a “spy” working within the ”Lawrence family camp” during the judicial inquiry led by Sir William Macpherson into the failings surrounding the murder investigation.

    Prime minister David Cameron said today that the Lawrence family have “suffered far too much”, and current Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe admitted corruption claims around the case sparked one of the worst days of his career.

  • 15:38

    Former Green Party TD and senator Dan Boyle, now a local election candidate for Cork, has said Fine Gael should break links with strategist Frank Flannery over his dealings with Rehab and Complete Eco Solutions.

    “The refusal of Frank Flannery to appear before the relevant Oireachtas committee to answer simple questions is an affront to the Irish public and to the good reputation of Rehab,” Boyle said.

    “It is not enough for the Taoiseach to say he should now attend. He should ask Frank Flannery to step down from any role he provides in advising the Fine Gael Party. His actions in the last week, and in the whole affair, make his position as a key strategist for the party untenable.”

  • 15:40

    The Ireland squad formed an impromptu guard of honour for Brian O’Driscoll as he trotted out for Friday’s captain’s run training session at the Aviva Stadium today.

    More on his 140th and final home cap here, as well as a good picture of O'Driscoll acting the maggot.  

  • 15:42
    To the final frontier  - A group of Sicilian amateur scientists have launched a model cannolo, the typical pastry roll symbolic of the Italian island, into the stratosphere.

    The ricotta-stuffed treat was affixed to a home-made spacecraft called the ‘Cannolo Transporter’, made from recycled materials and equipped with two cameras and a GPS tracker.

  • 15:43
  • 15:57
  • 16:10

    St Patrick’s Day and some associated (low brow) events have received some bad publicity in the lead up this year, notably from Lord Mayor of Dublin Oisin Quinn.

    RTE has announced it is to broadcast “We Need To Talk About Ireland”, a 90 minute “creative celebration” focusing on Ireland’s past, present and future.

    We’re told the event “is the brainchild of independent Irish collective The Trailblazery” and will take place in front of a live audience from The Round Room at Dublin’s Mansion House.”

    “This innovative cultural event challenges some of Ireland’s brightest innovators, thinkers, artists and creative entrepreneurs to explore what it means to be Irish in 2014,” according to organisers.

    The event will be streamed internationally by RTÉ  and also by The Washington Post website from 9pm on St Patrick’s Day.
  • 16:12
    Bringing your car into Dublin could become a more attractive proposition as clampers are threatening strike action.
  • 16:22

    A nice video from Temple Street Hospital where children have been offering their thanks to Brian O'Driscoll ahead of his retirement.  

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DbKyzAruRMA&feature=youtu.be

  • 16:23
  • 16:32

    Three people arrested for protetsing outside the EPP congress have been released. One of them, a political activist, told a court he will continue to protest “against the fascists” following his detention.

    More on that here


  • 16:48
    German chancellor Angela Merkel and Taoiseach Enda Kenny wave to the media from the steps of Goverment Buildings this afternoon. Photograph:Cathal McNaughton/Reuters.
    German chancellor Angela Merkel and Taoiseach Enda Kenny wave to the media from the steps of Goverment Buildings this afternoon. Photograph:Cathal McNaughton/Reuters.
  • 16:51
    A protestor outside Government Buildings ahead of the Kenny/Merkel press conference. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire.  
    A protestor outside Government Buildings ahead of the Kenny/Merkel press conference. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire.  
  • 17:01
    That's all for today folks. Thanks for reading and have a good weekend.