independent

Thursday 17 April 2014

Fire fighter acquitted of threatening to shoot colleague bids to regain gun licences

Karl Finlay

A DUBLIN court will decide in June whether a fire-fighter, who was acquitted of threatening to shoot a colleague in the head during a row, should be let have gun licences for four firearms.

Karl Finlay (36) of Oldbawn Way, Tallaght, had denied threatening to kill Derek Dowling at Donnybrook Fire Station, Donnybrook, Dublin on April 5, 2011.

Last October, a jury at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court found him not guilty of the charge.

The two men had been working together in the kitchen of the fire station when there was a row about which radio station to listen to.

The fire-fighter has brought an appeal to Dublin District Court against a revocation of his licences in relation to two guns and refusal of permission for licences for two more firearms, by Garda Chief Superintendent John Mangan and Superintendent Peter Duff, of Tallaght station.

Last month David Hegarty BL, for Mr Finlay argued that evidence from the Circuit Court trial, in which his client was acquitted, should not be adduced by the State.

In reply, counsel for the State, Fintan Valentine submitted that the court must decide whether or not Mr Finlay meets the criteria to carry or use a firearm without being a danger to public safety.

Counsel for the State argued that the court needed to hear the evidence.

Judge Timothy Lucey, ruling on this preliminary point, had said last month that Mr Finlay had to demonstrate that he was of good character in order to be allowed have a gun licence. The appeal should not be fettered in any way and the allegations may be admitted into evidence, Judge Lucey had found.

Today the court ordered that the appeal would take place on June 21 next.

A psychiatrist has made a recommendation that Mr Finlay should be let have the four firearms, the court has already been was told.

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