The Trouble with Being Harry Fitzsimmons

The Trouble with Being Harry

All of my life, I have found many pros and cons, to being a girl with the name “Jimmie”. The biggest con is I am always assumed to be male even in light of having the female box marked on forms. People assume Jimmie must be a boy.. But the pro is awesome. Once people understand it really is Jimmie and not Jennie or Jamie., they tend to remember me because of my unique name..Harry Fitzsimmons sits in a jail in Senegal languishing because of his name. Having a name and living in an area with that name being so common can, in some cases, be highly detrimental. In our Harry’s case, nothing could be more true. Our Harry is being legally confused with a man who runs in the same circles our Harry used to run in. His attachment to these people landed him in prison for 15 years in 1973. However, the “other” Harry was only 5 in 1973.Our Harry’s story begins like this: In November 1971, the Woodburn House Hotel in Belfast exploded. Our Harry allegedly sent 2 armed men in with a submachine gun and a revolver and they planted the bomb that destroyed the hotel.. This was said to be a part of the Provisional IRA bombing campaign. including the Collin Glenn bacon factory, and the Daily Mirror colour plant. He was convicted in 1973. According to Duncan Gartham of the The Telegraph, a British news source, our Harry “allegedly later helped organize a number of attempted escapes from the Maze Prison. Following his release, he was charged with plotting to kill High Court judge Basil Kelly in Belfast in 1983, using a hijacked Red Cross ambulance.The charges were withdrawn and it is believed that he quit “the movement” and went on to run Rumours nightclub in west Belfast before opening the Ace Taxis firm and a nearby petrol station.”

Today he is accused of laundering money for IRA through his Italian property development projects. According to prosecutor Gratteri, our Harry is now linked his IRA buddies in with the notorious Italian mafia, ‘Ndrangheta.. Authorities say that our Harry and his business associates are colluding with this mafia cartel in a joint venture using “mafia intimidation through a complex network of Italian and foreign countries.”

To keep them better distinguishable, I will refer to our Harry as Harry James. The man that he is being confused with is Harry Joseph. Having the same last name of Fitzsimmons and living in close proximity seem to be one of the downfall for Harry James.

He now sits in a jail in Senegal. Granted an internet search and simple math skills, I was able to find the difference between Harry James and Harry Joseph. Clearly if one were trying to play off the history of one by making it a public spectacle by knowingly attributing wrong facts to the wrong person, that would be considered highly unethical. Nicola Gratteri seems to not have the same ability to decipher one Harry from another.

The prosecutors also alleges Harry James is the treasurer of the IRA, but there is no basis for such claims.
In the Financial Times on May 27, 2013. It is reported that Dan McGuinness, attorney for Harry James told the press his client “totally refutes the allegations” and has been involved in “legitimate business as a promoter of properties in south Italy.”

So what is the moral of the story.? I think there are a couple.. Maybe it is to never EVER name your kid something this common.

But seriously, this is insane.. How can one man sit in jail without recourse? He has no voice and the crimes he is accused of are not able to be substantiated. Isn’t someone mad as hell about the fact this could be you? A series of events could literally take you from the security of your home into a foreign jail, alone and dank. That is the scary part, the bogey man may just be an overzealous prosecutor needing to promote a story.

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