Saturday 25 November 2017

Jobstown trial jury ask to review garda helicopter footage taken at scene

Michael Murphy (53),Kieran Mahon (37), Michael Banks (46), Frank Donaghy (71), Scott Masterson (34), Paul Murphy (33). Pic Collins Courts
Michael Murphy (53),Kieran Mahon (37), Michael Banks (46), Frank Donaghy (71), Scott Masterson (34), Paul Murphy (33). Pic Collins Courts

Andrew Phelan

THE jury in the Jobstown false imprisonment trial has asked to review video footage taken from the garda helicopter of the scene at Jobstown in which former Tanaiste Joan Burton was allegedly falsely imprisoned.

The jurors resumed deliberations at 10.43am this morning after requesting the footage to "see could the jeep reverse."

The jury had already been advised by Judge Melanie Greally that reversing the jeep was one possible exit route that they could consider when deciding if Ms Burton and her advisor Karen O'Connell were falsely imprisoned.

The jury is considering verdicts in the cases of Solidarity TD Paul Murphy and five other men charged with falsely imprisoning Ms Burton and Ms O'Connell at an anti-water charges protest in 2014.

Deputy Paul Murphy has denied falsely imprisoning former Tanáiste Deputy Joan Burton. Photo: Collins Courts
Deputy Paul Murphy has denied falsely imprisoning former Tanáiste Deputy Joan Burton. Photo: Collins Courts

Mr Murphy (34), along with south Dublin councillors Michael Murphy (53) and Kieran Mahon (39) and three other men - Michael Banks (46), Frank Donaghy (71) and Scott Masterson (34) all deny falsely imprisoning Ms Burton and her advisor Karen O’Connell at Fortunestown Road, Jobstown in Tallaght, Dublin on November 15, 2014.

When the jury returned this morning, the foreman said they were "looking for the footage from the air support of the jeep, to see could the jeep reverse."

Judge Greally said arrangements would be made fof the jurors to view the video shortly and told them to resume deliberations.

Total deliberating time at that stage stood at an hour and 53 minutes.

Yesterday, Judge Greally re-charged the jury at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court following a day of legal argument. She told them there were "very important" issues she had to revisit before they continue deliberating.

Among the 18 points she advised them on was a "third" way out former Tanaiste Joan Burton could have used to leave the water charges protest at which she was allegedly imprisoned.

The prosecution maintains Ms Burton and Ms O’Connor were trapped inside two garda vehicles for around three hours as they tried to leave the area.

It has been argued by the State they were falsely imprisoned because when the cars were surrounded, they were “totally restrained”- they were unable to leave on foot because of the danger and the cars were not able to move away. The State also allege the imprisonment of the pair was intentional and the accused men acted in a joint enterprise.

Defence lawyers have argued there was no false imprisonment. They maintain that the accused were exercising their constitutional right of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression, and that the obstruction to the cars was no more than “an inconvenience, delay and a nuisance.”

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