Thursday 19 April 2018

Get dressed or you miss court, judge tells Dundon

John Dundon
John Dundon

Brian Kavanagh

A wheelchair-bound John Dundon, dressed only in shorts, appeared in court to hear that his trial for the murder of Garryowen rugby player Shane Geoghegan had been adjourned until Friday.

The Special Criminal Court ruled that the 30-year-old's trial should not proceed until a defence application to have the case adjourned comes before the Supreme Court.

Asked by judge Mr Justice Paul Butler if he had anything to say about his client's "state of undress", Mr Dundon's counsel Martin O'Rourke said his client was without his own clothes after having been discharged from hospital and returned to a cell in Portlaoise Prison other than his own.

DANGER

It was widely reported that Mr Dundon was admitted to hospital after going on hunger strike.

Mr O'Rourke said his client was not afforded an opportunity to obtain his own clothes and had refused to wear prison issue, adding that his client asked that his own clothes be made available for the court appearance.

Mr Justice Butler told Mr O'Rourke: "If your client is not going to appear appropriately dressed in court then he will be absent from court."

Mr O'Rourke said there were currently proceedings before the Supreme Court as the defence had written to Chief Justice Susan Denham for an expedited hearing on the decision of the Special Criminal Court not to grant an adjournment in the case.

John Dundon, with a last address at Hyde Road, Limerick, was due to stand trial yesterday for the murder of 28-year-old Shane Geoghegan at Clonmore, Kilteragh, Dooradoyle, Limerick, on November 9, 2008.

Dundon's defence team had sought an adjournment of the matter until 2014 in the interests of a fair trial, after they received thousands of pages of what was described as "thrown together" investigative material.

Mr Justice Butler said that although the court was "very conscious" that it had previously refused an adjournment due to the potential danger to the life of the proposed chief prosecution witness, the defence had a right to challenge the court's ruling.

Irish Independent

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