Saturday 16 December 2017

Man found with a shotgun in his bedroom given suspended sentence

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

Isabel Hayes

A Dublin man who was found with a shotgun in his bedroom has been given a suspended three-year sentence.

Shane Byrne (28) of Brompton Lawn, Castleknock pleaded guilty to one count of possessing a firearm in his home between March 1 and March 7, 2012.

Garda Michael Costello told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on Wednesday that gardaí carried out a search warrant at a house in Castleknock, which Byrne shared with his older brother, Michael.

Shane Byrne led gardaí to his bedroom, where they discovered a shotgun stuffed down the side of an armchair.

During the search, gardaí also found another shotgun and a quantity of drugs. Byrne's brother has been dealt with by the courts in relation to those items, the court heard.

Byrne told gardaí his brother had left the gun in his bedroom and that he “wasn't involved in any of this stuff”, the court heard.

Byrne has no previous convictions. He later went travelling to Australia and was charged in Dublin airport upon his arrival home.

Seoirse Ó Dúnlaing BL, defending, said the shotgun was only in Byrne's bedroom because his brother put it there.

“It was there out of a sense of loyalty to his brother,” Mr Ó Dúnlaing said. “(His brother) was the main participant and the main perpetrator and Shane Byrne's role was of allowing his property to be used.”

Judge Melanie Greally said it was clear the shotgun was not Byrne's property.

“It was put into his bedroom by his older brother who accepted responsibility for that and all of the other illegal items which were housed in the premises in Castleknock.”

She said it was important to note the “harm caused to society” by firearms. She handed down a three-year sentence and suspended it in its entirety.

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