Sunday 19 November 2017

Judge begins his charge to the jury in trial of man (31) accused of being part of 'murder gang' that shot man dead in south Dublin

The Criminal Courts of Justice in Dublin
The Criminal Courts of Justice in Dublin

Eoin Reynolds

A judge has begun his charge to the jury in the trial of a man accused of being part of a "murder gang" that shot a man dead in south Dublin.

Gary Flynn (31), of Rossfield Drive in Tallaght, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Seamus 'Shay" O'Byrne at Tymon Park North in Tallaght on March 13 2009.

Justice Patrick McCarthy told the jury of eight men and three women at the Central Criminal Court that the prosecution's case relies on circumstantial evidence. He said that in such cases pieces of evidence are presented that on their own would not be enough to convict, but when taken together may prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is guilty.

He said that the standard of proof is no different in such a case and that the prosecution must "exclude any rational hypothesis" that contradicts their version of events.

Justice McCarthy told the jury that the prosecution in this case does not allege that Mr Flynn shot Mr O'Byrne dead. He said that it is possible for a person to not be present when a crime is committed, but to still be part of the "common design" or intention.

He cited the example of a burglary gang in which the getaway driver or planner is as guilty as the person who breaks into the house and removes the valuables.

He also told the jury that they must be satisfied that the accused person intended to kill or cause serious harm to the deceased.

Justice McCarthy will continue his charge to the jury on Tuesday.

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