Saturday 24 March 2018

Man jailed for petrol bomb attack that left girl scarred for life

Mum says daughter (11) is in 'a living hell'

Martin Nevin arriving at Longford court
Martin Nevin arriving at Longford court

Brian McDonald

A MAN has been jailed for his part in a violent raid on a house in Longford, during which an 11-year-old girl suffered horrific injuries after she was set alight by a petrol bomb.

Martin Nevin (23) received a 12-year sentence, with the final six years suspended, for the attack that left Michaela Maughan with horrific injuries.

The schoolgirl was visiting the house at Pauric Colum Heights in Longford town with her brother and grandmother three years ago when the terrifying late-night attack took place.

Longford Circuit Criminal Court heard that the three visitors and the family who lived at the house were entirely innocent victims.

Michaela suffered horrific burn injuries and has been deeply affected by the attack.

She required plastic surgery and was left with facial, arm and chest scarring.

She lost part of her ear and has been left with a bald patch on her head after her hair caught fire.

She is under the constant care of a senior psychologist and suffers from post traumatic stress disorder.

Her mother, Marie Ann, described her daughter's life as "a living hell on earth".


Garda evidence at an earlier court hearing revealed that four men wearing hoodies and armed with a baseball bat and slash hook attacked the house at midnight.

They smashed windows and two of the attackers were seen with plastic bottles containing rags at the top and carrying lighters.

Michaela had been sitting on a couch in the kitchen when one of the petrol bombs was thrown. She was immediately engulfed in flames.

In March, Nevin (23), unemployed and originally from Springlawn in Longford, pleaded guilty to a charge of damaging the property of Ann Joyce at Pauric Colum Heights, Longford on September 30, 2010, intending to damage it and endangering the life of Michaela Maughan.

Yesterday prosecutors told Judge Tony Hunt that there had been full co-operation and the accused man had given a substantial account of the incident.

The judge described the attack as "an outrage".

The judge noted that four men had taken part in the attack and two had now been identified and found culpable.

Nevin had made his contribution by way of "an ample statement", the judge said.

He sentenced him to 12 years in prison but suspended the final six under a range of conditions, including that he have no contact with Michaela Maughan or her immediate family.

Irish Independent

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