Monday 27 March 2017

Takeaway row led to deaths of Polish men, court is told

Nicola AndersonNicola Anderson

TWO Polish men suffered "devastating" brain injuries when they were stabbed with a screwdriver in a row that escalated outside a chipper.

A trial at the Dublin Central Criminal Court heard there was "never any hope of recovery" for Pawel Kalite (29) and Marius Szwajkos (27), who died some days after they had been stabbed through the skull on February 23, 2008, outside their house on Benbulben Road in Drimnagh, Dublin.

David Curran (19) of Lissadel Green, Drimnagh, yesterday pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to manslaughter of both men. His plea was not accepted by the prosecution.

Sean Keogh (21) of Vincent Street West, Inchicore, pleaded not guilty to murdering the two men.

The court heard that an incident erupted outside a local takeaway when a 15-year-old boy bumped into Mr Kalite.

Witness Dean Costello told the court of seeing "the little young fella" brushing off the man. The older man then started following the boy and a commotion ensued.

Mr Costello saw the Polish man fall to the ground and get "one or two boots", although he added that this was not a severe beating.

Counsel for David Curran, Giollaoisa O Lideadha SC, told the jury that his client was not disputing that he was the one who had caused the fatal injuries in both the victims.

He said his client would plead provocation and that he had experienced a "sudden loss of control".

Fight

However, counsel for the prosecution, John O'Kelly SC, said it was a clear case of "deliberate intention".

Both Mr Kalite and Mr Szwajko worked as mechanics at Ace Autobody in the Robin Hood Industrial Estate.

Mr O'Kelly told the court that Mr Kalite had "unfortunately taken exception to being bumped into" by the boy and he went after him.

The father of defendant David Curran, who knew the young boy, intervened, saying: "He's only a young fella, leave him alone." Two young girls also became involved.

A fight broke out and Pawel Kalite "got a bit of a beating".

"Mr Kalite was not injured but he was very upset," said Mr O'Kelly. Mr Curran, the defendant's father, drove away and told the young boy to go home.

But one of the two girls rang David Curran. Shortly afterward, he and Sean Keogh arrived "full of fight".

David Curran had a screwdriver, which was seen by several witnesses and he was angry, kicking a car. He, Sean Keogh, the two girls and the young boy went up Benbulben Road to the house where Mr Kalite lived.

Mr Kalite was upset and angry and wanted to go outside to confront those who had beaten him up, but his housemates, including Marius Szwajkos, tried to persuade him not to.

As Mr Kalite came out, Curran and Keogh attacked him, punching, kicking and holding him by the throat, inflicting two stab wounds with the screwdriver. The second stab went right through the mid-section of the brain.

Marius Szwajkos came to his assistance but sustained an almost identical stab wound through the mid-section of the brain, with an additional fracture, Mr O'Kelly told the court.

The trial continues.

Irish Independent

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