Raid on 20 Beara trawlers by gardai, Revenue was ‘utter overkill’ – skipper

A major inter-agency sweep of 20 boats was carried out in Castletownbere on Wednesday morning to see if illegal immigrant workers were on board. A skipper in the area estimated that there was a combined force of 50 people – including detectives, Revenue Commissioners, and members of the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) – engaged in the searches at Dinish Island, between 9am and noon on Wednesday. The skipper said five men – two detectives, two WRC staff, and a member of the Revenue team – boarded his boat shortly after 9.30am. The skipper said he employs one non-EU worker on that boat and that everything – which had already been checked out a month ago – was found to be fully compliant. ‘I have nothing to hide,’ said the skipper, who suggested: ‘A phone call wouldn’t have gone amiss.’ And he described the whole operation as being: ‘Like using a sledgehammer to squash a peanut – it was pure and utter overkill.’ Read the story here 16:37

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