Belfast Telegraph

Gardai carrying out search linked to Kevin Lunney attack as Fermanagh priest tells gang to stop 'before someone is killed'

Kevin Lunney was seriously assaulted before being dumped at the side of the road (Quinn Industrial Holdings)
Kevin Lunney was seriously assaulted before being dumped at the side of the road (Quinn Industrial Holdings)

Gardai in Cavan are carrying out a search in relation to the assault of Quinn chief operating officer Kevin Lunney.

Mr Lunney was kidnapped and subjected to a two-hour attack, with police believing up to 20 men may have been involved in the assault.

The gang delivered a chilling message to Mr Lunney, to the effect that he and the other four named directors of Quinn Industrial Holdings must resign from the company or be shot.

On Sunday morning, parish Priest for Derrylin in Co Fermanagh Father Gerard Alwill- where the Quinn Industrial Holdings is headquartered- told parishioners of his shock at the incident.

"What happened last week runs totally against those Christian values: the values of mutual respect for each other, the values of love of one another," he said.

"Not only does this barbaric act run contrary to our Christian values, but it also runs totally against our own natural human values.  What happened was totally abhorrent to all decent people."

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Workers from Quinn Industrial Holdings gathered in solidarity (Brian Lawless/PA)

Father Alwill said to plan and carry out "such a savage attack" is contrary to the teachings of not just Jesus Christ, but "every sinew of human decency that is within us."

"I, as an individual, and we as a community, are both horrified and disgusted by the brutality of this attack and by the sheer heartlessness that could inflict such suffering on the wife, the children and the wider family of the individual concerned," he said.

Father Alwill said there can be no justification for the "vicious onslaught" against Mr Lunney.

"Over the last few days I’ve sensed a growing feeling of anger, resentment and revulsion among the members of our community over what has happened. 

"Those who have spoken to me have mentioned their sense of shock, their sense of outrage and their sense of disbelief that such a terrible thing could happen here.  Many feel helpless and afraid, with no one to speak on their behalf."

The priest called on those behind the violence to "stop now" and said there is better ways of resolving any differences.

"In the name of God - stop before somebody gets killed," he added.

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