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Dublin: 4 °C Wednesday 13 November, 2019
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AAA expels councillor who threatened to cut activist's throat

Limerick councillor John Loftus is no longer considered a member of the AAA.

Updated 9.40am

THE ANTI-AUSTERITY Alliance has expelled a councillor who threatened to cut a political activist’s throat.

The Limerick branch of the AAA had asked John Loftus to resign as a Limerick city councillor last night after he sent a threatening Facebook message to local activist Greg Doran last Sunday morning.

The message read:

I tried to be nice. The next time I see you I’lll [sic] cut your fuckin throat. Insult me & you are dead. See you Monday.

Doran subsequently posted the private message to Twitter:

Loftus was requested to resign after the AAA Limerick branch met last night.

Having failed to attend the meeting and to so far accede to the resignation request, the party said this morning that it was immediately removing the councillor’s AAA membership.

In a statement this morning, the AAA Limerick branch described Loftus’ message as a “catastrophic misjudgement” from a public representative and said he is no longer considered a member of the party.

Activists felt that anything less than resignation as a councillor would not really be credible given the strong opposition in the community to threats, intimidation and violence, and would leave a question mark as to whether Cllr. Loftus or the AAA really treated this situation with the seriousness it deserves.
The meeting also felt that the qualified apology which Cllr. Loftus offered in the media yesterday demonstrated that he has indeed failed to register the seriousness of the situation. There is no context that justifies the threats he made.

Loftus could not be reached for comment this morning.

Despite being expelled from the AAA he is under no obligation to resign his council seat and can serve as an independent for the remainder of his term.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie yesterday, he expressed confidence he would not be thrown out of the AAA:

I doubt if I’ll be thrown out of the party. I’ve been here from the start.

Local councillor Cian Prendiville had said last night that if Loftus refused to resign he would no longer be considered a member of the AAA.

The threatening message was prompted by a row between Doran and Loftus over party funding.

Loftus described sending the message as a “moment of madness” and apologised yesterday, insisting he would “never hurt anybody in my life”.

‘I’ll cut your f***in throat’: AAA councillor says death threat was a moment of madness

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Hugh O'Connell

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