A fresh campaign has been launched to clear the name of a New Inn farmer accused of murdering his neighbour 73 years ago.
Supporters of the Justice for Harry Gleeson group hope the Government will re-open the case of Gleeson- hanged in 1941 for the murder of Mary ‘Moll’ McCarthy.
McCarthy’s mutilated body was discovered by Gleeson on November 21 1940. He was subsequently charged with her murder and hanged at Mountjoy Prison, though always maintained his innocence. The brutal killing has divided the South Tipperary community ever since. Now, Gleeson’s relatives have turned to the Irish Innocence Project - a worldwide wrongful conviction organisation - to have Gleeson posthumously exonerated by the Department of Justice.
The Attorney General’s Office has appointed a leading senior counsel to review the case, which many believe was a grave miscarriage of justice. Fresh forensic evidence may be enough to establish Gleeson’s innocence, supporters claim. Gleeson’s nephew Tom Gleeson, grandnephew Kevin Gleeson, Sean Delaney and Cashel local historian Eddie Dalton, are backing the campaign and meet regularly in Thurles’s Anner Hotel.
Kevin Gleeson told reporters: “I grew up in the same home as Harry did. It’s something that is very familiar and was often spoken about when I was growing up. Hopefully the Justice for Harry Gleeson group can clear Harry’s name once and for all. I don’t think we’ll stop until Harry’s name is cleared.” Mother-of-seven ‘Moll’ McCarthy was denounced from the pulpit in the rural Ireland of the 1940’s for her unorthodox lifestyle. The Innocence Project, based in Dublin’s Griffith College, has written to Alan Shatter’s office seeking a pardon after reviewing Gleeson’s conviction. The new evidence centres on a firearms register which was not produced at the original trial, the alleged time of death, an alibi for Gleeson, and verbal testimony from the victim’s daughter.
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