There has been an outcry over the decision by the Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin to show a painting of Brian Meehan, who is serving a life sentence for the 1996 murder of journalist Veronica Guerin.
Meehan, a major player in the notorious Gilligan drugs gang responsible for her death, had his portrait painted by a reputable artist who has worked with prisoners picked apparently at random as subjects.
The painting is on sale for â‚¬3,000 (£2,170). The artist, Mick O’Dea, defended his work, saying it was not about power or glorification.
Veronica’s brother, Jimmy Guerin, now a journalist with the Sunday Independent, has protested against the insensitivity of displaying his sister’s killer. Talk show Liveline on RTE Radio I has been inundated with complaints, including one from a retired police officer who was one of the first on the scene following the assassination.
By Des Cryan in Dublin