A garda has denied he told a brother of the late notorious criminal 'Dublin Jimmy' there was plenty of room at his premises "upon which to plant cocaine".
Truck and car dealer Fran McGuinness made the allegation about the garda in legal proceedings where he is seeking a temporary injunction restraining gardaí from "watching" or "besetting" him.
Mr McGuinness (59) has claimed the comment was made to him at his premises near Swords, Co Dublin, on October 22 last year after he asked an officer, who wanted "a word" with him, to leave.
But in a responding affidavit, the officer involved, Garda Warren O'Sullivan of Swords garda station, said: "This very serious allegation against me is entirely unfounded."
In the proceedings, Mr McGuinness denies being involved in criminality and claims he has been the target of garda attention because of his late brother Cyril McGuinness, who was also known as 'Dublin Jimmy'.
Cyril McGuinness died last year in Derbyshire, England, while being investigated for allegedly masterminding the kidnap and torture of Quinn Industrial Holdings executive Kevin Lunney. Prior to the death, Fran McGuinness told the Irish Independent they were estranged and had no dealings with each other.
He wants injunctions stopping gardaí from blocking the entrance to his yard with marked or unmarked cars, from driving into it unless they have a warrant, and from "harassing" his customers.
In the High Court yesterday, Mr McGuinness's counsel, Alan Toal, sought an early hearing date for the injunction application. "This is a daily exercise being engaged in by the guards," he said.
Mr Toal also said affidavits filed by gardaí responding to his client's allegations were "fundamentally flawed".
Frank Callanan SC, for the Garda Commissioner, told the court Mr McGuinness's allegations had been denied in affidavits filed by gardaí.
"There is a very significant dispute on the facts," he said.
Mr McGuinness has accused gardaí of unlawfully entering his premises on a number of occasions and of using "heavy-handed tactics and language".
He claims that on March 31 this year 19 gardaí arrived with a warrant to search the premises when this could have been adequately done with just four.
And he said a comment by Gda O'Sullivan "to the effect that there was plenty of room on my premises upon which to plant cocaine" had "sent a chill down my spine".
In his affidavit, Gda O'Sullivan denied he said this.
He said Mr McGuinness was the subject of a criminal investigation and there was no basis to the harassment and besetting allegations. He claimed Mr McGuinness had been "uncooperative and abusive" to him in previous dealings.
The garda said he had called to the yard last October to lawfully demand the production of documents relating to a car, but was told: "I won't be producing anything for you. Now f*** off my land. You're trespassing."
He said 17 gardaí, not 19, had been involved in the search in March and such numbers were necessary as searches can be "quite labour-intensive".
The search was part of an investigation relating to stolen property, he said.
The garda denied Mr McGuinness's office and premises had been upended, saying these were "left in a condition closely similar to how they were found".
Ms Justice Leonie Reynolds scheduled a September date for the injunction hearing.