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Irish Independent Wednesday 6 October 2010

Car bomb was abandoned by terrorists, police believe Tom Brady Security Editor POLICE believe the Real IRA car bomb, which exploded in Derry early yesterday injuring two PSNI officers as they evacuated people, had been abandoned by the terrorists. Officers disclosed last night they did not think that either a bank or hotel, both damaged by the blast, was the intended target. They said it appeared that the bombers were planning to strike elsewhere in the city but abandoned the bomb because of the police presence in the area. Last night, anti terrorists officers warned the blast could herald the start of more frequent attacks by dissident republicans in the run up to Christmas. The bomb contained more than 200pounds and was bigger than the Real IRA blast outside the nearby Strand road police station in August. The explosives had been packed into a Vauxhall Corsa car, which exploded on the Culmore Road, on the outskirts of the city, shortly after midnight. Two police officers received injuries to their necks and ears when they were knocked to the ground by the explosion. The car was parked close to a branch of Ulster bank, a row of shops and the Da Vinci Hotel, where more than 200 guests were staying. The bomb caused considerable damage. The bank had previously

been targeted by dissidents. They sent bullets in the post to staff who are related to members of the PSNI. The car bomb exploded hours after Garda commissioner Fachtna Murphy and PSNI deputy chief constable Judith Gillespie had warned at a cross border organised crime conference that the dissidents had improved their bombing capabilities and were using a range of techniques. Determined Justice minister Dermot Ahern warned last night that while they were a small band of determined people, they were dealing with a much larger band of equally determined gardai and PSNI officers. He said the terrorist did not enjoy support in the wider community and as a result gardai were being successful in gathering intelligence. The garda success, said Mr. Ahern, had resulted in more than 50 suspects being arrested so far this year and 22 had been brought before the Special Criminal Court. A number of people, regarded as serious players, had been taken out of circulation as a result. He said that while the Government here and the gardai shared the concerns of the PSNI about the threat posed by the dissidents, the combined cross border efforts displayed at Monday’s conference underlined the level of cooperation across the

PSNI forensics officers at the scene of the Real IRA bombing in Derry. Below, Martin McGuinness greeting people at a fringe meeting which he addressed at the conservative conference in Birmingham. TREVOR McBRIDE and COLM LENEGHAN(PACEMAKER) and DAVID JONES/PA

Border in combating both terrorism and organised crime. Police officers from both

jurisdictions reckon that the combined strength of the dissidents is about 500 activists,

with 150 of them based on the southern side of the border. The Real IRA group behind the Derry blast is aligned to an experienced terrorist based in the city. It has connections with a louthArmagh faction. Taoiseach Brian Cowen said the bombing was a wanton act of violence that served no purpose and he described it as an "appalling" incident. Northern Ireland's deputy first minister Martin McGuinness, who was addressing a meeting at the UK Conservative party conference in Birmingham, condemned what he called "the futile activities of these conflict junk-

"People in this city (Derry) are horrified that there are still these Neanderthals within our society," he said. Mr McGuinness added that the objectives of the dissidents were to destroy the peace process, break the unity of the Stormont executive, turn back the clock on policing and embarrass Sinn Fein. On all four counts, they had failed miserably. Defence Minister Tony Killeen said last night the bombing was anti-democratic and he believed it would stiffen the political will in both jurisdictions to deal with the threat posed by the dissidents.

Woman saw her partner shot dead house. The first thing he heard was three or four shots. The gunman, who had a black scarf wrapped around his face, then came downstairs and shot Mr Barry in the neck.

Georgina O’Halloran A WOMAN has described the horror of seeing her partner shot several times in their bedroom by a lone gunman just minutes after the couple had returned home from the pub. John Berney (29) of Castlelyon Drive, Newcastle, Co Dublin, was gunned down in front of Karen Mealy on March 6, 2008. Ms Mealy was in the couple's upstairs bedroom with Berney, who was getting money to pay the babysitter's taxi home, when she heard someone coming up the stairs. She told an inquest at Dublin County Coroner's Court yesterday: "When I turned around, he (the gunman) was already in the room.

Karen Mealy, leaving the inquest, and John Berney. COLIN KEEGAN

"He didn't say anything. He was holding a small handgun. I saw him fire the gun. I heard about three or four bangs. John just fell to the ground. "When he was finished shooting, the man just turned around and ran down the stairs." Berney, a criminal, was shot once in the trunk and had two contact gunshot wounds to the left side of his head.

He didn't see the gunman come in as he was bending down at a bedside locker. Ms Mealy's two sons, aged four and one, were asleep in upstairs bedrooms at the time. Stephen Barry, who had been babysitting the two boys and was downstairs at the time of the shooting, told coroner Dr Kieran Geraghty that he didn't hear the gunman come into the

Arrests The coroner told Mr Barry that he was "lucky to be alive". A post-mortem by the deputy state pathologist Dr Michael Curtis found Mr Berney died of multiple gunshot wounds. A murder investigation resulted in a number of arrests, Superintendent Peter O'Boyle told the inquest. A file was forwarded to the DPP, but at present there is no prosecution pending. The Garda investigation remains open. A jury of four men and two women returned a verdict of death by unlawful killing.

Irish Independent Tuesday 5 October 2010


Message in a bottle from Florida makes corks pop in Clare Shane Hickey

Dr Mark Hamilton and ex -‘Afternoon Show’ presenter Sheana Keane at the lunch of Kellogg’s Perfect Balance Roadshow yesterday.

Sheana’s having a brolly good time IT was like old times. Former ‘Afternoon Show’ presenter Sheana Keane teamed up with TV doctor Mark Hamilton yesterday to launch a new project to encourage people to change their diets and lifestyles. And she was adamant she

was happy to be there, rather in front of the TV cameras. “Myself and Mark used to copresent the ‘Afternoon Show’ so this all seems very familiar”, she said. But she has no regrets after being replaced in the daytime slot by two shows: one fronted

by ex-colleague Maura Derrane and the second by Claire Byrne and Daithi O Se. “I have moved to where I want to be,” she said. Ms Keane (39) is now undertaking research study. The Kellogg’s Perfect Balance Roadshow visits

City Square Shopping Centre in Waterford on Friday, Mahon Point Shopping Centre, Cork, on October 15, Golden Island Shopping Centre in Athlone on October 16, and the Swords Pavilion Shopping Centre on October 23. KEN SWEENEY

IT was the message in a bottle, which travelled over 3,700 miles. A teenager inadvertently discovered the power of the Gulf Stream current when he found a green bottle on a beach in Co. Clare. The wine bottle had travelled for over a year across the Atlantic as part of a science project by a school in Florida. NUI Galway student Adam Flannery (17), from Athlone, was on holiday in Kilbaha on the Loop Head Peninsula with his family when he spotted it washed up on a pebbled beach. After retrieving the bottle, he enlisted the help of local bar owner Bernie Keating to open it whereupon they found a letter from a high school in Melbourne, Florida. “The note inside said it was part of an oceanographic survey and asked that it not be thrown back into the water,” Stephen Flannery, Adam’s father, said. The family, who have been holidaying in the area annually for the last 15 years, subsequently emailed the school

Adam Flannery (17) with father Stephen Flannery holding their message in a bottle.

to play their part in the survey. It soon emerged that the bottle – branded with a serial number – had been thrown into the sea, off the Florida coast on April 22, 2009. It was one of 150 bottles dispensed as part of a project by Melbourne High marine science teacher Ethan Hall. The annual project puts bottles into the Atlantic Ocean, 20 miles off nearby Port Canaveral. The bottles are then plotted through the Gulf Stream.

Life in prison for ‘monster’ who raped his daughters Fiona Ferguson, Conor Gallagher and Aofie Nic Ardghail AN elderly father who inflicted a “campaign of rape” on two of his daughters and sexually abused his son has been jailed for life. The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, received the rarely deployed maximum penalty for rape following a harrowing sevenweek trial at the Central Criminal Court. The 73-year-old was convicted in August of 87 counts of sexually assaulting, raping and orally raping two daughters between the ages of five and 11 and sexually assaulting his son from the age of three to six at various locations from 1997 to 2002. Yesterday, at his sentence hearing, one of his daughters revealed how she had habitualy self-harmed and had attempted suicide on six occasions because of the mental anguish caused by her father’s abuse. The other daughter hit out at her mother and the HSE for failing to protect her from her father, who continued to abuse her after she had been placed into care. Mr Justice George Birming-

ham imposed life sentences for the “campaign if rape” the convicted sex offender inflicted on two of his daughters and gave the man, who has no evidence of personality or psychological disorder, further sentences for sexually assaulting his son as a young boy. The judge said evidence in the trial had been “truly shocking” and that references to the man being a “monster” in a “home from hell” contained no exaggeration. “The depths of (the man’s) depravity were matched only by his deviousness and cunning,” he said. Fear The judge said the HSE had identified that the children were at risk and put them in care, but their father undertook a “campaign” to frustrate its efforts and continue his abuse. The 19-year-old eldest victim said she lived in fear of the day her father would “come back” and pleaded with the judge to jail him for “a very a long time”. “Dear dad, I loved you and trusted you and I thought you loved me the most,” she read from her victim impact statement. “It was all lies, if you loved me, you wouldn’t have abused me or sent me away.”

Her 18-year-old sister said in her victim impact statement: “Since the age of four, I was betrayed in the worst possible way. He stole my whole childhood. I would have been better off if he had killed me.” The now 17-year-old male victim declined to give evidence or submit a victim impact report. Gda Deirdre Walsh told the court that the sexual abuse of the three children began in the family home prior to the children being taken into care in February 2000. The girls were returned home later that year but the father continued to live with the family. The girls were again taken back into care in 2001 but ran away on many occasions. During the time the eldest girl was in care, she escaped repeatedly and was sexually abused by her father. He gave her a mobile phone to make contact with him and also gave her money so she could get away. She was sexually abused and raped in various locations such as a burger chain’s toilet, on the DART and in hotels. She said her father told her: “This is what daddies do.” Her younger sister was also abused on occasions when she ran away from the care home.

Rare maximum jail sentence for ‘house of hell’ father BACKGROUND Dearbhail McDonald Legal Editor

THE maximum sentence for rape in Ireland is life, a penalty that is rarely deployed as there is usually some redeeming factor – no matter how small – to mitigate against the imposition of the harshest sentence we have. But there was little to redeem a man already serving a lengthy prison term for the indecent assault of two minors – whose campaign of sexual abuse inflicted on three of his young children resulted in him being handed a life sentence yesterday. Mr Justice George Birmingham said the depictions of the now 73-year-old as a “monster” who reigned in “the home from hell” were more then warranted.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was jailed after breaching court orders not to contact his children who were placed in care to escape his reach. He abused his children while out on bail for the previous offences, and much of the abuse occured after his children has been removed from their family home. Neither age nor infirmity could stand in the way of the sentence imposed on him, the severity of which the man may appeal. Yesterday at the Central Criminal Court, two sisters fled in tears as prosecutors detailed the appalling crusade of rape and sexual abuse inflicted upon them and their younger brother by their noweldery father. The two young women returned to bravely detail the impact of the abuse on their lives, directing their anger not just towards their father but

also towards their mother and the HSE for failing to protect them. One of the sisters, aged just 18, told that she habitually self -harmed and had attempted to kill herself six times. On one occasion, following an overdose, she laughed as her liver started to fail because she did not want to live anymore. “Since the age of four I was betrayed in the worst possible way,” she said. “He stole my whole childhood. I would have been better off if he had killed me.” Her older sister, aged 19, detailed how her father continued to abuse her after she had been placed in care. After she went into care, her father would come to the home and knock on her window to tell her to run away. She ran many times and was sexually abused by her father. When she told him he was hurting her he told her: “This is what Daddies do.”






Lenihan to insist Quinn pays back €2.8bn debt

Monday 4 October 2010


€1.80 (£1.20 IN N. IRELAND

Lean on me Rory’s number one fan lends her support

Minister gets tough on tycoon over outstanding Anglo loans Michael Breenan and Emmet Olivier FINANCE Minister Brian Lenihan is to insist that Sean Quinn repays €2.8bn if debts to the taxpayer. Mr Quinn and his family personally borrowed the money from Anglo Irish Bank—but that debt is now officially owed to the Irish taxpayer since the bank was nationalised. The Irish Independent has learned the bank is entitled to pursue personal assets owned by Mr Quinn - once Ireland’s richest man - and his family to recover this money. The bank forced Mr Quinn and family members to give personal guarantees on a portion of the huge debt and consequently could try and seize their personal assets.


Emmet Olivier Why Sean Quinn is running out of options P29

The bank has written off €2.3 bn of the €2.8 loans but is till entitled to go after Mr Quinn and his family for the full amount. However, whatever happens

Recommended retail price of the Irish Independent Compact edition in ROI is €1.80

only a portion is likely to be recovered on such a large sum. “You can’t draw blood from a stone,” said a senior source familiar with the Quinn situation last night. Mr Quinn’s best hope of meeting his debts - by using the profits generated by his Quinn Group of companies - looks set to be dashed. All the profits from this company will have to pay to go for others lenders for the foreseeable future and Mr Quinn could even lose control of the company forever as hardnosed hedge funds from the US look to take it over. Some 33 of these funds are now owned by the Quinn Group. Despite all these difficulties, it emerged that Mr Lehinan is determined the bank should Continued on page 10

RORY Mcllroy’s girlfriend Holly Sweeney reached for her umbrella yesterday when she needed some support at soggy Celtic Manor. And Holly led the way in supporting Rory, left, as he and the rest of the European Ryder Cup team blitzed the Americans to take a three-point lead into today’s final round of singles matches. EUROPE FIGHTBACK: SPORT




The internet sensation that’s a hit with dieters P36

The latest Dublin Theatre Festival reviews P26

You can buy your Disney comic book any day P2

Irish Independent Monday 22 October 2012


'Information deficit' ahead of child rights poll Nicola Anderson

T Leo Varadkar and Frances Fitzgerald at the launch of Young Fine Gael’s campaign for a Yes vote. GARETH CHANEY/

HERE is an "information deficit" on the forthcoming children's rights referendum, according to Children's Minister Frances Fitzgerald. Calling for more debates and discussions to be highlighted by the media, she said she was not complacent on the outcome and wanted a good turnout and a

strong endorsement of the referendum on November 10. She said the evidence was that people were "very supportive" and responding to the wording in a "non-adversarial way". However, Ms Fitzgerald said she wanted to make sure people were well informed and understood the "four or five key points" of the referendum. Ms Fitzgerald, along with Fine Gael's director of elections Leo

Varadkar, launched the Young Fine Gael (YFG) campaign for a Yes vote in Trinity College in Dublin. Mr Varadkar told members that with just two weekends left until polling day, the timeframe was now "very tight" for the campaign. He noted that the referendum had specifically been set for a Saturday to afford younger citizens the opportunity of casting their vote. Public meetings are being held

Gilmore says his support for gay marriage 'is a Labour policy not Coalition's'

around the country and information is "plentiful". "Everyone should be fully informed by polling day," he said. A new website specially designed for the referendum along with T-shirts, posters and leaflets, was also unveiled yesterday. YFG president Patrick Molloy said there was a "thirst" for information on the referendum among young people.

Fionnan Sheahan

Expectant Amy jets in as 'X Factor' VIP guest

Political Editor

Breda Heffernan

addressed by the Constitutional TANAISTE Eamon Convention." Gilmore's backing for gay Mr Gilmore was delivering marriage is Labour's way, the closing address at the not the Government's way, Ballsbridge Hotel in Dublin he has claimed. at Europe's largest annual Mr Gilmore has confirmed conference of those he is speaking for the working on lesbian, gay, Labour Party, and not the bisexual, transgender and Coalition, when he says the intersex (LGBTI) rights the Eamonn Gilmore: spoke at gay marriage is an issue 16th ILGA-Europe "whose time is come". conference. the LGBTI convention Taoiseach Enda Kenny has The conference's chairman, repeatedly refused to "I believe it is a civil rights Tiernan Brady, said Mr support Mr Gilmore's issue. It is something that is Gilmore's presence at the stance, saying he speaks for going to be considered by conference was a the Government. the Constitutional "remarkable symbol of the The Government's official Convention," he said. progress that has taken position is gay marriage Although he was place in Ireland". will be considered by the representing the "The Tanaiste's presence planned political reform Government at the sent a powerful message of think tank, the conference, Mr Gilmore hope to those delegates Constitutional Convention. said his views on gay coming from countries But Mr Kenny has not marriage were personal. where LGBTI people are given a guarantee to hold a Committed under daily threat, and referendum on any changes "As a Government, we are where opportunities for the group comes up with. progress are limited," he committed to developing Speaking at a major said. legislation to provide for international conference on the recognition of It was the first time the gay rights, Mr Gilmore transgender people. And as conference had come to once again threw his I have stated elsewhere, the Ireland and the first time in weight behind gay its history it was addressed right of same-sex couples marriage. to marry is not a gay rights by a deputy prime minister. "I think the whole position issue, it is a civil rights A new opinion poll, of gay and lesbian people meanwhile, shows two out issue," he said. has changed very of three people are in Mr Gilmore said he was dramatically over the favour of gay marriage. not disappointed with Mr course of the last 20 or 30 Kenny's refusal to also The Behaviour and years. Ireland is now a Attitudes poll for the back gay marriage: "I am much more tolerant society expressing the point of 'Sunday Times' shows 66pc than it was back then. I believe the law should be view of the Labour Party. believe gay marriage is an The Government's position changed to allow for full issue whose time has come. is that gay marriage will be same-sex marriage.

Brian O’Driscoll and wife Amy Huberman. The couple have announced that they are expecting a baby. BRIAN McEVOY

EXPECTANT MOTHER Amy Huberman is making the most of her free time as she jetted off to London for 'The X Factor'. The actress, who is expecting her first child with husband Brian O'Driscoll, was in the audience of the results show with pals PR guru Joanne Byrne and Norma Sheehan. She was invited to the show and given VIP access all areas by Louis Walsh, and got to meet the other judges and contestants backstage. According to Amy it was a welcome treat after finishing filming the Comedy Central series Threeesome and a guest role in Chris O'Dowd's 'Moone Boy'. While Amy's publicist would not reveal when the baby is due, it is understood that the couple will welcome their bundle of joy next spring. The couple are said to be "absolutely delighted" with the pregnancy. Only last week, Amy playfully hinted that something good was coming down the line when she referred to her and Brian's future saying: "It's going to be an adventure for both of us." And during an interview with Ray D'Arcy Brian confessed he would be happy to become a house husband and follow Amy to England or LA if her work took her there. The couple who wed in 2010 are understood to have found out they are expecting a few weeks ago but had only begun sharing the news with family and friends in the last few days. Amy (33) has said she will continue with her career after motherhood. It is a busy time for the celebrity couple as Amy's second novel, 'I Wished For You', is due to hit bookshops on November 1 while the same month sees Brian back on duty for Ireland's autumn international rugby matches against South Africa and Argentina.

Cheers in church as priest cleared of misconduct Terry Conlon


PACKED church clapped and cheered on learning that their 67-year-old former parish priest was cleared to return to active ministry after a more than two-year absence from the altar. Fr Oliver Brennan voluntarily stepped down in August 2010 from his post in

the parish of Haggardstown and Blackrock, Co Louth. He stepped aside after 11 years as he was the subject of a police investigation followed by a church inquiry over a child-safeguarding complaint, which he had denied. Cardinal Sean Brady told the delighted congregation that Fr Brennan had been found to be innocent of any misconduct. He confirmed that the church inquiry

concluded that the allegation against Fr Brennan had not been "substantiated" and that the priest would soon resume ministry in a new parish. Most of the congregation in Saint Oliver Plunkett Church in Blackrock rose from their seats and delivered a sustained ovation including cheers that lasted a number of minutes. The Public Prosecution Service of Northern Ireland last October found the

allegations against Father Brennan "totally lacking in credibility". The church inquiry also later concluded that Fr Brennan "remains a priest of good standing and should be restored to active ministry forthwith". Reacting to the outcome, Fr Brennan said: "My life has been on hold for two and a half years. I'm glad this ordeal has ended. I'm looking forward to re-starting my life in active ministry.

"It's been a very difficult and painful two years. It was particularly stressful that the church investigation took so long." The exact nature of the complaint was not disclosed. Shortly before withdrawing from ministry over the allegations, it was announced he was to transfer from Blackrock and Haggardstown. A large petition was gathered in support of allowing him stay.

Fr Oliver Brennan: allegations ‘totally lacking in credibility’



Times Square bomber is sentenced to die in prison

Irish Independent Wednesday October 6 2010

Trump gets all fired up for presidential bid Alex Spillius in Washington

Donald Trump: in the running

DONALD Trump, the US property magnate and reality television host, has declared his interest in running for president, saying that “somebody has to do something, because we are losing this country”. Trump has been tempted to consider ploughing his estimated $2bn (€1.44bn) fortune into a White House bid by what is a wide open Republican field. Despite fierce opposition on the Right to President Barack Obama

and his Democratic colleagues, no strong challenger has yet emerged for the 2012 election. The early front-runners for the Republican nomination include Mitt Romney, who came a distant third to John McCain in 2008, and Sarah Palin, who may be a hero to conservatives but remains deeply divisive. A host of other senators and state governors with little name recognition are also jostling for position. “I’ve had so many people over the years ask me to do that (run for president) and for the first time

in my life I am absolutely thinking about it,” Trump said. Trump has already shown his knack for publicity. He appeared on television over the weekend to distance himself from a mysteriously commissioned poll in New Hampshire, an early voting state, which asked voters for their view of him. Even before hosting the American version of ‘The Apprentice’, Trump (64) was a prominent figure thanks to the near collapse of his property empire in the 1980’s and his colourful private life.

It is not clear whether Trump would run as an Independent or Republican. He could conceivably be joined in the race by another wealthy, self-financed candidate in Michael Bloomberg, the mayor of New York. Trump is not the first celebrity to be lured by the prospect of being the most powerful elected official in the world. Actor Warren Beatty considered running in the Democratic primary in 2000 because he thought his the favourites, Al Gore and Bill Bradley, were insufficiently liberal.

Rogue trader Kerviel jailed and ordered to repay 5bn

Flight attendants go Gaga on safety FLIGHT attendants for a lowcost Phillipine airline have developed a Lady Gaga-based dance routine to keep passengers’ attention during the safety demonstration. A video of stewardesses performing on Cebu Pacific has become a YouTube success with more than six million hits.

No prison love due to smuggling A CALIFORNIAN prison has banned hugs and kisses through fears they are being used to disguise smuggling contraband. Four visitors to the prison were found with a knife, a handcuff key, marijuana, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Animal encounter costs man deer A DEER that crashed through a window and ran around a house in Tennessee caused thousands of dollars in damages before the home owners shot it dead. David Ellis said he saw the deer slide into a drum set and continue a rampage that included ramming its antlers through walls and scattering furnishings.

Greg Keller in Paris IT was history’s biggest rogue trading scandal, and yesterday Jerome Kerviel, the man responsible for it was sentenced to three years in prison and ordered to repay €5bn. Kerviel, looking drawn and stressed, was convicted on all counts. The court roundly rejected defence arguments that the 33year-old trader was a scapegoat for a financial system gone haywire with greed and the pursuit of profit at any cost. By ordering a tough sentence for a lone trader, the ruling marked a startling departure from the general atmosphere of hostility and suspicion about big banks in an era of financial turmoil. It was a huge victory for Kerviel’s former employer, Societe Generale SA, France’s second-biggest bank, which has long had a reputation for cutting-edge financial engineering and has put in place tougher risk controls since the scandal broke in 2008. Kerviel maintained that the bank and his bosses tolerated his massive risk-taking as long as it made money – acclaim the bank strongly denied. “I have the feeling Jerome Kerviel is paying for an entire system,” said Oliver Metzner, Kerviel’s lawyer, noting that his client hadn’t benefitted financially from the fraud. Kerviel stood expressionless as the court convicted him and

In Brief

Millions seized in Colombia raids Columbia’s defence minister said authorities seized $29m and $17m in cash in a home in a poor district south of Bogota. Rodrigo Rivera said the money belonged to drug traffickers including Daniel Barrera. Authorities are offering a $2.7m (€1.94m) reward for Barrera’s capture.

Boston skyscraper sells for $930m

Jerome Kerviel at Palais de Justice in Paris yesterday, where he was sentenced to three years in prison

pronounced a five-year sentence with two years suspended. Kerviel was found guilty on charges of forgery, breach of trust and unauthorised computer use for covering up bets worth nearly €50bn between late 2007 and early 2008. He was also banned for life from working in the financial industry. In the most stunning blow, the court ordered Kerviel to pay the bank back the €4.9bn – a punishment nobody realistically expects him to

repay. French media calculated that – based on his current salary of €2,300 a month as a computer consultant – it would take Kerviel 177,536 years to pay off the damages. The sentence “is more symbolic than real” said Bradley Simon, a New York based white collar criminal defence attorney. Appeal Mr Simon said the decision was “breathtaking”. “One low-level individual must bear the total responsibility for the near demise of a pillar of the French

financial system,” he said. “This judgment ignores what we now know to be the real case, that Societe Generale and financial institutions throughout the world were encouraging risky trades.” Kerviel’s lawyer said that he would appeal and would remain free pending that appeal. The damages are also suspended during the appeals process. Societe Generale spokeswoman Caroline Guillaumin called the verdict “an important ruling that acknowledges the moral and financial harm done to the bank

and its staff”. “The bank can now turn the page, pursue its strategy and continue to rebound,” Ms Guillaumin said. While trading for the bank, Kerviel took home a salary and bonus of less than €100,000. In 2007, he amassed €1.4bn in profits for Societe Generale, the presiding judge noted. But in the end, the bank’s loss of €4.9bn stands as the largest-ever fraud by a single trader.

BOSTON’S tallest skyscraper is being sold to real estate and newspaper publisher Mortimer Zuckerman’s company for $930m (€671m), the firm said. Boston Properties bought the John Hancock Tower and Garage from a partnership between Normandy Real Estate Partners and Five Mile Capital Partners.

Rapper gets silent treatment in jail LIL Wayne has been accused of breaking jail rules by having an iPod. The rapper was moved yesterday into what officials call “punitive segregation” for a month, until his expected November release date.

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