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Saturday 30 August 2014

Resident was 'paid €15,000 to help his court case'

Niall O'Connor

Published 10/07/2014 | 02:30

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THE man who sought a High Court injunction to prevent Garth Brooks' performing in Croke Park was allegedly given a suit and €15,000 to fund the case.

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Brian Duff (43), who has withdrawn his court bid, claims that unnamed individuals who "wanted to take the GAA down" provided the cash.

The High Court case is understood to have played a significant role in the decision to pull all of the concerts.

However, the father of four told the Irish Independent that the case wasn't about Garth Brooks and he regrets ever getting involved.

Mr Duff said he sought the money on Sunday while he was at a hurling match in Dublin. He refused to say who paid him but claimed it was people north and south of the border.

"I said 'I'm bringing the GAA to court.' Garth Brooks was a just stepping stone. This money came from people in GAA circles. It's GAA clubs who are sympathetic to the cause," he said.

The scaffolder from Dublin's North Inner City said the money was placed in a bank account early this week. A source also confirmed that he was provided with a suit to wear in court.

The bid to halt all concerts was due to be heard today, but according to Mr Duff, has now been withdrawn.

It is understood that his solicitor was not aware that Mr Duff's case was being funded by other individuals.

A GAA spokesman said that no comment would be made in response to the claims.

Mr Duff was last night in hiding after he and his family were allegedly subjected to death threats.

He contacted Dublin's Lord Mayor Christy Burke after receiving threats but told the Irish Independent that he does not intend to notify gardai.

Asked whether he will be reporting the threats Mr Duff replied: "You can't be a squealer in the North Inner City . . . do you want to get me shot?"

He said he was forced to stay in rented accommodation as a result of the backlash from his court action

Mr Burke last night pleaded with any individuals making the threats to desist.

The Lord Mayor explained that Mr Duff decided to drop his case after his daughters were targeted for abuse on Facebook.

"There was all sorts of threats made on his life. He had to stay in a B&B as a result. He's pulling the plug on the injunction. He will not be appearing in court," he said.

Brooks rejected a proposal to play just three concerts because he said he was not willing to exclude hundreds of thousands of fans.

But sources close to the council insist that Mr Duff's high court action – which attempted to block all the concerts – may have played a factor.

"The council simply don't know what impact the injunction proceedings would have had. It had been threatened for days and provided an extra barrier to the concerts taking place," said a source.

Irish Independent

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