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Friday 22 August 2014

Armed gardai called in to deal with Nevin row

Ken Foy and Clodagh Sheehy

Published 19/05/2014 | 07:44

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John Joe Nevin recuperating at home in Mullingar after his legs were broken in an attack. Photo: David Conachy
John Joe Nevin recuperating at home in Mullingar after his legs were broken in an attack. Photo: David Conachy

RELATIVES of Olympic boxer John Joe Nevin have been embroiled in a vicious row with another family at a function over the weekend

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Armed gardai had to wade in to separate around 40 people who were involved in what locals described as “pitched batter” at St Loman’s GAA Club in Mullingar in the early hours of yesterday.

Members of the extended Nevin family were fighting with members of a rival family, but root of the dispute was not known.

It is understood the fight broke out during a family celebration, possibly a Communion.

Gardai confirmed they were called to St Loman’s GAA Club on Devlin Road in Mullingar at 12.15am on Sunday, but had to call for backup to deal with the violent row.

About a dozen gardai, including armed officers, had to break up the fight.

Three men aged between 35 and 41 were arrested and while there were no charges brought, a file on the matter is being prepared for the DPP.

All three men were later released.

One man was taken to hospital for treatment after the fight, but his injuries were not thought to be serious.

The row is the latest blow to the Nevin family following an attack in April on silver-medallist John Joe (24) which left him with two broken legs in an ongoing feud with members of his own family.

JJ Nevin, a cousin of John Joe, claimed he broke the boxer’s legs with a golf club while defending himself.

He alleges John Joe and his brother Paddy arrived at his Mullingar home in the Ardleigh Crescent estate on April 5 with an aim to ending a dispute between JJ and his father.

JJ had pulled up at their own house when they say John Joe’s BMW pulled up outside.

But both sides differ on the sequence of events that followed.

According to JJ, he approached John Joe and told him to stay away from his father, Michael, but he said the boxer attacked him.

“I gave him a slap of a golf club and he backed away,” said JJ Nevin.

The row continued and John Joe was then knocked to the ground and JJ says he hit him “two or three raps” with a golf club.

“I hit him,” Said JJ, adding that he had not known the extent of the injuries to John Joe.

The boxer had surgery in Tullamore Hospital on one of his broken legs, both of which were fractured in the fight.

John Joe has claimed he was beaten up by people jealous of his success, and denied that the row was centred on a woman.

“These rumours are just complete nonsense. I was attacked out of jealousy, there’s no other reason,” he said at the time.

John Joe said the bone in one leg was sticking out through the skin and he was still being beaten.

“I thought I would’ve been killed because any man that hits a golf stick and takes my bone out in one slap – it it had been my head it was good night,” he added.

John Joe said he had a metal plate in one leg after the attack, and his main concern was concentrating on getting back into the ring and boxing again.

Two men  arrested in relation to that row were released without charge. A file in relation to one of them was being forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

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