DonegalDaily online newspaper reported that Gardai raided two homes in Letterkenny as part of an investigation into the alleged theft of Irish Water property. The searches took place on Friday morning April 3. DonegalDaily said " it is understood that property was recovered but no arrests were made." According to the article Garda Superintendent David Kelly responded to claims by Councillor Michael Mac Giolla Easbuig by saying that "this matter is currently under investigation and as this investigation is ongoing, we cannot make any further comment at this stage"
Micheal Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig, Donegal Can't Pay Won't Pay spokesperson, has strongly condemned Gardai raids on the homes of anti-water meter activists as an unacceptable escalation of political policing. "The only thing these activists are guilty of, is standing up for their communities by helping them to resist unwanted and unnecessary water meters. They have stood with people day after day throughout the winter months in all sorts of weather helping them to assert their rights not to have a meter imposed against their wishes. Where are the Garda raids on the homes of swindling bankers? Why no arrests of bribing builders who piled their fortunes high and walked away from half-finished developments? And why no dawn raids on corrupt and thieving politicians who facilitated this whole sorry mess? It is because we are being subjected to an unacceptable escalation in political policing with only those who are trying to stop the imposition of bailout taxes like water charges being subjected to dawn raids, arrests and imprisonment."
From The Journal.ie a news website
Councillor Micheal Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig, who has been speaking with the two householders, said people involved in the protest movement were “very frightened” in the wake of the raids, which happened between 9am and 10am on Good Friday. The councillor said “worthless” pieces of scrap plastic left on a path by contractors had been taken by a group of protesters. The plastic casings – which he maintained were “broken, dirty and old” – would have been replaced with new material during the installation process, he said. However, Mac Giolla Easbuig said the material was disposed of by the activists and maintained none was found in the home searches. He said a number of €2 plastic plugs – which campaign groups have been offering for sale around the country – were taken from one of the houses. (Activists have been encouraging people to remove their water meters and uses the caps to keep their supply flowing – it’s not something Irish Water endorses).
Mr Mac Giolla Easbuig said " Our message is that we will not be intimidated by political policing. We will continue to support all those who resist metering and support the boycott. The best way for anyone who shares our anger at these events is to show it, is by supporting the Bin The Bills demonstration on 25th April."