RTE’s Crime Correspondent Paul Reynolds Visits IT Carlow
IT Carlow’s Law Society hosted guest speaker, RTE’s Crime Correspondent Paul Reynolds last Monday. Mr Reynolds took time from his busy schedule to travel to the college and talk to students on various topics, including the drug trade and gang crime.
Paul has held his position in RTE for over a decade, working for radio, television, online and Aertel. He reports on all aspects of crime, from the criminal justice system and opposition policy to something in which the audience showed a special interest - the legal profession. The speaker was greeted and introduced by Uchenna Aneto, the Law Society President at IT Carlow, informing all on his experiential background. The society members and those who attended the talk sat ready, with pens in hand, eager to learn from his broad experience of crime in Ireland.
He wasted little time before launching into an in-depth discussion on Ireland’s crime problems in a light hearted, yet highly knowledgeable and informative way. He discussed the Irish drug problem which, he explained to the young solicitors-to-be, was a horrible disease infecting Irish society. He then zoomed out, showing the overall problems that the country faces in combating the drug trade, most interestingly, the profit margin. Mr Reynolds, while assuring us that he wasn’t suggesting anybody takes up drug-dealing as a career, was able to describe the enticing nature of the trade in detail. He explained how decriminalizing so many drugs in Amsterdam had made it the main International Drug Transit Hub for Europe with huge profit margins.
Towards the end of the talk the floor was open, and Mr. Reynolds fielded a variety of thoughtful and interesting questions. One related to the topic of the day, ‘Wouldn’t the decriminalisation of drugs help Ireland’s economy, with tourism and tax revenue, just as it happened in Amsterdam?’ Without hesitation, Mr. Reynolds pointed out, ‘No, the legal market would still be undercut by gangs, in the same way that cigarettes are still bought and sold on the black market today. As for tourism, is drug tourism really what you want for Ireland?’
Many other intriguing questions were asked and answered before the event came to a close, with Paul Reynolds receiving another round of appreciative applause before leaving to return to RTE. In the coming weeks, the Law Society will host guest speakers from around the country, information on this can be found on www.itcarlow.ie/lawsociety