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Patrick Kennelly (Release)

Volume 148: debated on Wednesday 9 November 1921

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asked the Chief Secretary if he is aware that Patrick Kennelly, of Snierla Bridge, Duagh, County Kerry, awaiting trial on the charge of being one of the ringleaders in two raids on Kilmorna, in the second of which, on the 14th April, 1921, Sir Arthur Vicars was murdered, was released from Tralee Hospital on the ground of ill-health on the 7th October last; and if he can state why this man has been so released in view of the grave charges against him?

This man was arrested on the 27th May, 1921, on suspicion of being implicated in the murder of Sir Arthur Vicars, but no evidence was obtainable against him, and the police, after careful investigation, finally reported that they were satisfied that he was not concerned in the murder. He was therefore released on the ground that there was no justification for his further detention.

Is my right hon. Friend aware that not only is evidence obtainable against this man, but people have sent in to the police that they are willing to give evidence and that this man was known to have been present in the first raid? Is he aware that I hold in my hand a letter from the late Sir Arthur Vicars saying that he recognised this particular man, and this man, who is a very dangerous man indeed, has been allowed to go out again, although the last time he escaped, within a fortnight Sir Arthur Vicars was murdered, and this man boasted of it all round the place. Why has the Government allowed this man once more to be at large?

My information is quite to the contrary. The police have made every effort to get evidence and can find no evidence to implicate this man in the murder of Sir Arthur Vicars.

Is my right hon. Friend aware that I have this morning seen the brother of the late Sir Arthur Vicars who was prepared to come forward with the evidence in question?

I think the hon. and gallant Gentleman is tendering information. He had better give it to the proper source.