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 PADDY MEEHAN 1928 - 1994

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PostSubject: PADDY MEEHAN 1928 - 1994   Wed Sep 03, 2008 9:55 pm

Patrick Connelly Meehan was born in the twenties with the result that his exploits were better publicised than those of the two previous characters. Little is known of his early career except that his misdemeanours started in 1937 when only nine. When he does come into public notice he is setting higher standards than his predecessors by concentrating on the more prestigious and potentially lucrative target of the main Scottish Banks.

In September 1951 he appears before Lord Blades in the High Court on the charge of on May 9th having broken into a shop at 8 Alexandra Parade, and from there into the St,Rollox Branch of the Clydesdale and North of Scotland Bank at 130 Castle Street, forcing open a cupboard by means of explosives and attempting to open a safe. It was stated that he had been invited to participate by others as they had felt that blowing the safe was beyond their level of skill. For his generosity he was given a sentence of two years. The others had already been sentenced.

His next court appearance is before Justice Reddin at Shankhill Co.Dublin in May 1955, but this time on the less serious charges of being in unlawful possession of sums amounting to £55, property of The British Linen Bank, Glasgow, and which was alleged to have been stolen from their Oban Branch from which £6000 had been stolen the previous Tuesday.

The sentence for the above must have been minimal for in August of the same year, with an associate Arthur Thomson, they attacked the Commercial Bank of Scotland branch in Beauly near Inverness. The branch was occupying temporary premises at the time which made the break-in relatively easy. Of the three safes on the premises two were blown open and the third unlocked by a key which may have been kept in one of the other safes. The report at the time states that the bulk of the cash was secured in part of one of the safes which remained fast and that this was possibly due to an excessive charge having been used.

In all probability the safe was fitted with a high security coffer, the purpose of this being that the remainder of the safe could be left accessible during working hours for books and records, but meanwhile the cash was safely secured in the coffer until required. This was fairly common in all bank safes where the coffers were both drill and blowtorch resistant. In fact in this instance the coffer contained £8000. The report also states that an expert had to be called in to open the coffer. Locals later reported that they thought the noise was caused by rifle shots or cars backfiring.

Their total gain had they not been caught would have been £391.7.4. Meehan received a sentence of 6 years," the sentence to commence when he completes the present 12 months for aiding and abetting one fellow prisoner Edward Martin to escape from Peterhead." Thomson got 3 years.




Some years later Meehan was the victim of a miscarriage of justice over the murder of an elderly woman during a housebreaking in Ayr. Even after the actual murderers confessed, it took a book by Ludovick Kennedy to have the case reopened and a Royal Pardon granted.

He died of throat cancer in 1994.
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PostSubject: An extract from the Evening Times - The Kay Street Siege - 15 July 1969   Thu Sep 04, 2008 12:54 am

An extract from the Evening Times - The Kay Street Siege - 15 July 1969

Five plain-clothes officers went to an attic flat in Kelvinbridge to interview James Griffiths, 34, in connection with the murder (Rachel Ross). They were unable to gain entry, and Griffiths, who was said to be pathologically afraid of prison, began shooting, injuring one policeman and firing at anyone who appeared in the street. Still shooting, he raced to a car in Great Western Road, and wounded a number of people. Retrieving a cartridge belt from the boot, he returned to the flat, where the siege continued. By now, the police had bulletproof shields, and had been joined by a marksman with a highpowered rifle. But just as they were preparing to use tear-gas, Griffiths escaped, commandeered a car at gunpoint, and took police on a three-mile pursuit to Possil.

Griffiths ran into the Round Toll Bar, where he fired some more shots, asked for a drink, changed his mind, then made off in a stolen lorry, before ending up in a tenement flat in Springburn�s Kay Street. There, he fired into a children�s playground and exchanged gunfire with police, his bullets ricocheting wildly and forcing local people to cower on shop floors. It fell to Chief Superintendent Calum Finlayson and Detective Sergeant Ian Smith, both armed with revolvers, to end the siege. Finlayson later recalled: �It was a warm day and I was perspiring and excited but I was not afraid. �I knew that Griffiths had a rifle and sawn-off shotgun and I knew the devastating effect of the latter. �I said, �If he gets us on the stairhead he�ll blow our heads off�.�

Finlayson opened the letterbox and could hear Griffiths shooting. Then he noticed the gunman�s shadow. Finlayson decided to fire and try to disarm him. He raised the revolver to the letter-box and took aim at the man�s shoulder. He fired, but then heard Griffiths shoot back at the door. The officers feared their bullet had missed, but it hadn�t � it had found its way from Griffiths� shoulder to his heart.

It was the first time that a wanted man had been shot by Scottish police. In all, Griffiths had fired more than 100 shots, injuring 13 people. One, a newsvendor, died of his injuries. The following day�s coverage of the siege contrasted with the optimistic stories about the launch of Apollo 11, which was taking Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins to the moon.

Paddy Meehan was later jailed for life for the Ross murder. But he spent his time in prison in solitary confinement, loudly protesting his innocence,
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