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27 Nov 2021

Judge begins delivering verdicts in the trials of four men accused of abducting Kevin Lunney

Judge begins delivering verdicts in the trials of four men accused of abducting Kevin Lunney

A judge has begun delivering the judgement of the Special Criminal Court in the trials of four men accused of falsely imprisoning and assaulting businessman Kevin Lunney.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt is going through the evidence that the court heard during the 40-day trial and has not yet indicated any verdict in relation to any of the accused. He will continue after lunch this afternoon.

Early in his judgement, Mr Justice Hunt described Mr Lunney as a "most impressive witness" and said the court fully accepts the account given by him on day four of the trial. He had, the judge said, "an uncanny ability to accurately estimate the passage of time even though his attackers removed his watch early on." His description of the yard where he was "beaten and mutilated" was borne out by the investigation, Justice Hunt said.

He said the court is also satisfied that what happened to Mr Lunney amounted to false imprisonment and assault causing serious harm. The medical evidence is "self-explanatory" he said, "and clearly reaches the threshold for serious harm." Mr Justice Hunt further indicated that the court is satisfied that Mr Lunney was assaulted in a blue horse box that gardai found in a yard in Drumbrade that is owned by the accused man Luke O'Reilly.

Mr Lunney has told the court that he was bundled into the boot of a car near his home and driven to a container where he was threatened and told to resign as a director of Quinn Industrial Holdings. His kidnappers cut him with a Stanley knife, stripped him to his boxer shorts, doused him in bleach, broke his leg with two blows of a wooden bat, beat him on the ground, cut his face and scored the letters QIH into his chest. They left him bloodied, beaten and shivering on a country road at Drumcoghill in Co Cavan where he was discovered by a man driving a tractor.

A 40-year-old man named as YZ, Alan O’Brien (40), of Shelmalier Road, East Wall, Dublin 3, Darren Redmond (27), from Caledon Road, East Wall, Dublin 3 and Luke O’Reilly (68), with an address at Mullahoran Lower, Kilcogy, Co Cavan have all pleaded not guilty to false imprisonment and intentionally causing serious harm to Mr Lunney at Drumbrade, Ballinagh, Co Cavan on September 17, 2019.

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