independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

Court hears of gym diary and drugs list in Rattigan cell notebook

A DETAILED diary replete with entries on a fitness regime, betting activities and a drugs "tick list", was found in the prison cell of Dublin criminal Brian Rattigan, his Special Criminal Court trial has heard.

Detective Garda Shane Curtis told Mr John O’Kelly SC, prosecuting, that he examined two notebooks seized by members of the Garda Organised Crime Unit who raided the accused man’s cell in Portlaoise Prison on May 22nd, 2008.



He said that the nature of entries replicated across one notebook, which contained details of weight categories, calories burned and times, suggested the book was a diary of physical activity and was possibly a gym diary.



Det Gda Curtis said that a diary entry that read “block for six weeks” referred to the placement of the accused man on the segregation block in Portlaoise Prison, as his own enquiries revealed that Brian Rattigan was kept on the segregation block from December 3 2007 through to January 14 2008.



He agreed with Mr O’Kelly that one of the notebooks contained a long list of names such as “Dicko” “Brian” and “Crazy” followed by “half” and numbers such as “9”, as well as an entry dated May 20 2008 that read: “Rock sorted, the glove with McGyver”.



Det Gda Curtis said that in his opinion the list was what is commonly known as a drugs tick list, detailing names and weights of drugs, as “half” suggested half a kilo, while a 9oz bar was commonly referred to as a “9”.



He told Mr O’Kelly that he examined the other notebook found in Rattigan’s cell and found that it also contained a drugs tick list recording names pertinent to the investigation.



Det Gda Curtis said that he compared both tick lists with a text message sent to a red and white Nokia 5300 phone seized by gardai along with five kilos of heroin in a shed at the back of a house on Hughes Road South in Dublin, and found the names Brian, Jay, Karl, Famer, Rita and Crazy to be common to all three.



Drugs expert Detective Sergeant Brian Robertson gave evidence to the trial last week that in his opinion the message on the Nokia 5300 phone referred to the division of drugs by weight.



Det Gda Curtis told Mr O’Kelly that in his opinion a number of names and numbers written in the notebook also correlated with names and telephone numbers saved to a mobile device uncovered by detectives in Rattigan’s cell.



He said that one of the notebooks was in addition a “very detailed” diary of betting activity, recording details of English professional football matches across a number of leagues, as well as amounts staked, results and any return on bets made.



Det Gda Curtis said that one entry recorded “500 win” while another dated October 30th, 2007 read “down 2,600”.



Rattigan (32), formerly of Cooley Road, Drimnagh, has pleaded not guilty to the possession of heroin and two counts of possession of the drug for sale or supply on Hughes Road South, Walkinstown, Dublin on May 21st, 2008.



He has also pleaded not guilty to the possession of two mobile phones at Cell 42, E1 Landing, Portlaoise Prison while an inmate at the prison on May 22nd, 2008.



It is the prosecution case that Rattigan used mobile phones to act as the “directing force” behind a €1 million heroin deal from his cell in Portlaoise Prison.



In March 2011 the Director of Public Prosecutions ordered that Rattigan's trial should be moved from the Circuit Criminal Court to the Special Criminal Court (SCC), which normally deals with terrorist offences, because the ordinary courts are "inadequate" to try the case.



The Special Criminal Court was told that the President of the High Court, Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns, made an order that Rattigan should be tried at the non-jury SCC following an application by the Director of Public Prosecutions under the Offences Against the State Act.



The trial has been adjourned for the afternoon and will continue tomorrow.

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