Tuesday 24 April 2018

Dublin man with prior manslaughter conviction sentenced to seven years for pipe bomb possession

An open verdict was returned at the inquest into the death of a Belgian student who
An open verdict was returned at the inquest into the death of a Belgian student who "most probably" had taken cyanide

A Tallaght man with a previous manslaughter conviction has gone back to jail for possessing a pipe bomb in a residential area and an attempted carjacking.

Kevin Walsh (25) of Allenton Green received an eight year sentence with three suspended in 2007 for the manslaughter.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring today sentenced Walsh to seven years for the pipe bomb offence and a concurrent four and a half years for attempting to seize a taxi.

He pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to possession of an explosive device at Carrigwood Estate, Firhouse on November 19, 2012. 

He also pleaded guilty to attempted carjacking in the Woodstown area, Rathfarnham on December 1, 2012. Walsh has 68 previous convictions.

Judge Ring suspended the last two years taking into account that Walsh had done well in the ten weeks he had spent in the community after being released from another taxi carjacking sentence.

The court heard this offence happened just after Walsh attempted to take the first cab driver’s vehicle. However he wasn’t charged for it or the pipe bomb possession until much later.

Judge Ring said it was “unfortunate” that these new offences had come to court a year after she had sentenced Walsh for the other carjacking on the basis that no other matters were pending against him.

She acknowledged Walsh had been doing well in the community after his release but said she considered the placement of a bomb in a residential area at the “upper end of the mid range” of offences.

Earlier, Garda Terry Brosnan told the court that 15 houses had to be evacuated after gardaí got a tip-off about the pipe bomb.

The Army Bomb Disposal team found an explosive device, packed with nuts, bolts and screws, underneath a car parked in a neighbouring driveway. Walsh’s fingerprints were found on a black plastic bag inside the bomb.

Garda Maria Dennison said a few weeks later Walsh and two other males approached Paul Orr’s taxi and got into the vehicle despite being told it was for another customer.

One of the men held up a glass cider bottle and said “I'll put this through you if you don't give me the car.”

Mr Orr grabbed his keys, jumped out of the car and took off running. The man with the bottle followed him to the front door of a nearby house but fled when Mr Orr roared at him.

Gardaí later found the glass cider bottle with Walsh's fingerprints on it.

Giolliosa O'Lidheadha SC, defending, said Walsh had consumed a lot of drink and drugs on the night but has since transformed himself and “turned his life around”.

He said Walsh could never forgive himself for the manslaughter, which arose out of a drunken incident with a friend.

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