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Corruption of Police by Shell

Corruption of Police by Shell

Printed below is an extract from a current submission to The Pitchford Inquiry by the Shell to Sea organisation in Ireland. As can be seen, it very much involves Shell.

The Pitchford Inquiry is investigating undercover policing activities in England and Wales. Pressure is mounting to also cover the activities of undercover British police in Ireland.


Corruption of Police by Shell

In March 2013 Shell to Sea  contacted a reporter in the London-based Observer newspaper regarding a series of allegations which had appeared consistently since September 2012 on a website co-founded by John Donovan and his late father Alfred, available at It took from March until publication on 11 August to research and legal-proof the article written by award-winning journalist Ed Vuillamy                            ( under the heading ‘Strange tale of Shell’s pipeline battle, the Gardaí and £30,000 of booze’.  While the reportage of alcohol provision to the police came as no surprise, we find the claim made by Mr Neil Rooney of OSSL as quoted below to be, indeed, sinister:

More sinisterly, OSSL also claims that a Shell manager demanded that Rooney withhold evidence after the clash, which occurred at Pollathomais in 2007. Rooney says that he heard an officer say of the pipeline protesters, “drive them into the sea”, but was told that this “cannot be part of your statement” to an ombudsman because the officer concerned was “our man” and “had to be protected at all costs”.

The following Sunday, 18 August, a follow-on story appeared in both the Irish and English editions of the London Times under the heading (Irish edition) ‘Shell contractor delivered three loads of booze to gardai’   This follow-on story is remarkable given the mutual antipathy that exists between The Observer and The Times.

In July 2015, Mr Neil Rooney and Mr Desmond Kane of OSSL gave evidence under oath at Castlebar Circuit Court regarding their provision of alcohol to the Irish police; this was reported by a court reporter for the Mayo News, a widely read provincial weekly newspaper:

While Shell has engaged in convoluted semantic exercises they have not issued a categoric denial of the printed stories; neither has Shell, despite its army of in-house lawyers and its indisputable access to funds to secure any legal representation it requires, issued any proceedings against either print or electronic media that covered this story. Similarly, Chief Supt. John Gilligan, Supt. Joe Gannon and Sergeants Butler (Belmullet), Grimes (Garda Water Unit) and Gill (now retired) named on the OSSL invoice have not issued any legal proceedings and neither the Garda Commissioner nor has any Minister for Justice done so on their behalf.


This website and sisters,,,, and, are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia segment.

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