Saturday 24 March 2018

Former mayor Brady accused of lying in chef assault case

Former lord mayor of Dublin Royston Brady leaving the High Court yesterday. Photo: Collins.
Former lord mayor of Dublin Royston Brady leaving the High Court yesterday. Photo: Collins.

Tim Healy

FORMER lord mayor of Dublin Royston Brady told a "complete lie" when testifying that he had advised the boss of a hotel of a head chef's propensity for violence before a decision was made to employ him, it was claimed in the High Court.

Mr Brady, who flew in to give evidence from the US where he now works, insisted he had informed Ian McGuinness, MD of Roganstown Golf and Country Club hotel, Swords, Co Dublin, that chef Max Usai had "a temper" and had been previously involved in an assault at another hotel before Mr McGuinness decided to take him on in Roganstown.

Mr McGuinness said Mr Brady had come all the way from America "to make my life a misery".

"Mr Brady, with all due respect, does not know the meaning of the word truth," he told the court.


Both men were giving evidence in a case being brought by Joseph Elmonem (65), the financial controller of Roganstown, who claims he was assaulted by Max Usai, of Chapel Farm Copse, Lusk, Co Dublin, in his office on March 21, 2011.

He sued Usai for damages over his injuries as well as the hotel operating company, Nethercross Ltd, claiming it was vicariously liable for Usai's actions and knew or should have known of his (Usai's) violent propensity.

The hotel denies liability and says he was not acting within the scope of his employment.

Usai accepted the assault took place and should not have happened but he denied it was a vicious, protracted assault as was claimed.

The court heard Usai was fined in the district court after he pleaded guilty to the assault and agreed to pay €1,000 towards Mr Elmonem's medical bills and €1,500 in general damages.

Mr Elmonem told the court he was sitting in his office when Usai came in saying he had not yet got his health insurance card from the hotel.

Mr Elmonem said he was busy, at which point Usai became abusive and punched him a number of times, leaving him bleeding badly and later requiring hospital treatment.

Mr Brady, who served as mayor in the capital between 2003 and 2004, told the court he had been asked by Mr Elmonem to give evidence as he was general manager of Roganstown at the time Usai was taken on.

He said before Usai was employed, he advised Mr McGuinness that he had had to previously sack Usai from another job at another hotel because he (Usai) had thrown a pan at a sous chef in a moment of anger.

He was away for two weeks when Mr McGuinness offered Usai a contract and returned to find him on staff.

He disagreed with Jonathan Kilfeather SC, for Nethercross, that he was not correct when he said he had given information to Mr McGuinness about Usai's temper before he was taken on.

"I cannot allow, after travelling all the way here, for you to say to me I am untruthful in the details I have given," he said.

Mr Brady also said he had taken a successful unfair dismissal case against Roganstown although the hotel said this was only over whether he had been given proper notice.

Mr McGuinness told the court Mr Brady never told him about the sous chef incident and it was "a complete lie" for him to say otherwise.

It was Mr Brady who had recommended Usai be taken on, not just on one but on two occasions, he said.

Mr Justice Daniel Herbert said he would give his decision later.

Irish Independent

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