Pig farmer who told two repossession men to get into pen with agitated boar was 'in the thick of' juror interference
A pig farmer who told two repossession men to get into a pen with an agitated boar must wait to hear the outcome of an appeal against his conviction for false imprisonment and other charges.
Donal Connaughton (58), from Elfeet, Newtowncashel, Co Longford, had pleaded not guilty to two counts of false imprisonment, two counts of threatening to cause serious harm and two counts of assault.
Patrick Mulvey and Justin Tighe, employees of repossession company, Assets Security had told Longford Circuit Criminal Court that they feared for their lives after going to JAC Pigs Ltd in Co Longford on April 29, 2010 to repossess items on behalf of GE Money.
Connaughton was found not guilty of one assault charge but found guilty on all other counts by a jury and he was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment by Mr Justice Tony Hunt on November 11, 2013.
He moved to appeal his conviction today, through his barrister Colm Smyth SC, on the principle ground that he did not get a trial in accordance with law because there had been “interference with a juror”.
Mr Justice George Birmingham remarked that if there was any interference, “the person in the thick of it was Mr Connaughton”.
Mr Smyth said Connaughton had been approached by an individual who said: 'I have a man on the jury (and) you can do certain services for him'. Allegedly, this man was a Mr McBride and the juror was a Mr Reilly, the court heard.
Mr Smyth said "Mr McBride contacted Connaughton the night before to say everything is going to be fine,” that he was “going to be acquitted".