Saor Éire issued a statement denying responsibility for the killing of Garda Richard Fallon and the expropriation of £2,000 from the Royal Bank on Arran Quay, Dublin, on 3rd April 1970. They signed the statement M. Price, using the name of the 1930’s socialist republican leader.
The day after the bank raid the Police released to the newspapers the names of seven people they believed to be members of Saor Éire and who they wished to interview. The list read: Simon O’Donnell, Joe Dillon, Paddy Dillon, Frank Keane, Charlie O’Neill, Sean Doyle and John Morrissey.
Statement issued by Saor Éire G.H.Q. denying responsibility for the killing of a Garda and the raid on the Royal Bank.
For tactical reasons it has never been the policy of this organization to issue statements disclaiming any actions attributed to it, by misguided or prejudiced persons in Dublin in Castle or elsewhere. In releasing this statement we hope we do not appear to be felon setting.
To enable this statement to be issued, which is being done in the public interest, Article 14, Section 7, of the Constitution of Saor Eire has been temporarily suspended for this purpose only. No unit of Saor Eire was ever active in the City of Dublin in or on the morning of April 3rd 1970. No member of this organization has been in any way connected with the shooting of a member of the Gardai Siochana in Dublin in on that date. In view of the manner in which the hunt has been carried out against Socialist and Republican Organizations, Saor Eire, supported by many people, calls upon the Government to set up an independent commission of investigation to hold a Public Inquiry into:
(1) The death of Garda Fallon
(2) The Special Branch with British Authorities against Irishmen and women struggling to end oppression in Ireland.
If such an Inquiry were to be set up, Saor Éire believes that the seven men named in the Garda Circular of 5th April 1970 will come forward to give evidence for the purpose of helping to establish the truth so far as their innocence or otherwise is concerned in the accident which resulted in the unfortunate death of Garda Fallon. It must be guaranteed that they will not be held on any charges of a political or other nature until 48 hours after the publication of the findings.
A member of this organization, Frank Keane, who up to the time of his arrest by the British Special Branch was the National Organizer of Saor Éire and a member of the GHQ, has since been charged with the alleged murder of Garda Fallon of which he states he is innocent.
Signed M Price
O/C HQ Unit
After the robbery some of the group issued a statement that the Saor Éire Action Group wishes to draw attention to the fascist tactics employed by Michael O’Morain and his political police in connection with the death of Garda Fallon. We view with particular indignation the naming of certain members of Saor Éire under the guise of a bogus appeal for assistance.
“We also criticize the hysterical campaign of the anti-socialist press which is designed to fool the public into accepting further coercive measures and greater inroads into their civil liberties. “We deny that Garda Fallon was killed, as the Government and the anti-socialist press suggest, in the course of protecting the public. He died protecting the property of the ruling class, who are too cowardly and clever to do their own dirty work.
Saor Eire Statement denying responsibility
for the killing of Garda Richard Fallon. Copyright: National Archives, Ireland.