NorthWick­lowa ter­ror­tar­get

Au­gust 1983

Bray People - - NEWS -

THE En­niskerry kid­nap­ping drama, which ended hap­pily this week, was the lat­est in a se­ries of crimes in­volv­ing ter­ror and ex­tor­tion in the north Wick­low area in re­cent months.

Since the be­gin­ning of this year alone, there have been at least four other ma­jor crimes in­volv­ing armed raids on the homes of res­i­dents in the area.

En­niskerry was the scene of an­other crime ear­lier this year when a pub­lisher was forced to hand over a €10,000 ran­som to two armed men who held his wife hostage.

Only a cou­ple of weeks prior to this a cou­ple were held hostage in their home in Newcastle by armed and masked raiders who robbed them.

And in Grey­stones ear­lier this year, an en­tire fam­ily were held hostage by raiders look­ing for cash and valu­ables.

Also in En­niskerry, a lone woman was held hostage in her home by raiders who de­manded money.

While the lat­est kid­nap of En­niskerry solic­i­tor Bill Somerville was the most dra­matic in­ci­dent, it un­der­lies the vul­ner­a­bil­ity of po­ten­tial kid­nap vic­tims liv­ing in a rel­a­tively iso­lated area.

The drama be­gan when Mr Somerville and his wife Manon re­turned home and found their el­dest son James (14) tied up and held by a lone gun­man.

The gun­man, dressed in para­mil­i­tary uni­form, masked and wielding a sawn-off shot­gun, de­manded £50,000.

After some dis­cus­sion, dur­ing which Mrs Somerville of­fered to take her son’s place, the raider agreed to take Mr Somerville as a hostage and he was driven away.

He was tied to a tree at the mil­i­tary ri­fle range in Kilped­der for 24 hours.

Ac­cord­ing to Mr Somerville and the gar­daí, no ran­som was paid.

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