Man accused of assaulting QIH director Kevin Lunney fails in bid to have charges against him dismissed
A Dublin man accused of falsely imprisoning and assaulting Quinn Industrial Holdings (QIH) director Kevin Lunney has failed in a bid to have the charges against him dismissed.
Alan O’Brien (39), with an address at Shelmalier Road, East Wall, Dublin 3, is charged with false imprisonment and assault causing serious harm to Mr Lunney at Drumbrade, Ballinagh, Co Cavan on September 17, 2019.
Mr O'Brien had today (Wednesday, July 29) applied to the non-jury court to dismiss the two charges.
Mr Lunney, a father of six, was abducted close to his home in Co Fermanagh on the evening of September 17. The businessman's leg was broken, he was doused in bleach and the letters QIH were carved into his chest during the two-and-a-half hour ordeal before he was dumped on a roadside in Co Cavan.
Bernard Condon SC, for Mr O'Brien, told the court that his client was making the application under Section 4E of the Criminal Justice Act 1999. A Section 4E application is for the dismissal of a charge against an accused.
The three-judge court heard submissions from Mr Condon and Sean Guerin SC made submissions for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
Mr Justice Paul Coffey, presiding, sitting with Judge Martin Nolan and Judge Gerard Griffin, said what was at issue was whether there was a sufficient case to put the accused on trial and whether a "prima facie" case had been made out by the prosecution.
Mr Justice Coffey said that having carefully considered all the evidence, the non-jury court was satisfied that there was a sufficient case to put Mr O'Brien on trial for the offences.
Mr O'Brien was remanded in custody until January 11 2021, when his trial is expected to take place alongside his three other co-accused.
Mr O'Brien's co-accused are Luke O’Reilly (66), from Mullahoran Lower, Kilcogy, Co Cavan; Darren Redmond (25), from Caledon Road, East Wall, Dublin 3 and another man who cannot be named for legal reasons. They are also accused of the same offences.
Mr O’Reilly and Mr Redmond were granted High Court bail in April, despite garda objections. Granting both men bail at the time, presiding judge Mr Justice Paul Burns said the alleged abduction and assault on Mr Lunney constituted vicious, cruel and abhorrent criminal behaviour. However, the judge said the accused were presumed innocent and there was an entitlement to bail.