Monday 16 September 2019

Mother of five convicted for role in Hutch murder

Regina Keogh one of three found guilty in feud killing

Regina Keogh
Regina Keogh
Thomas Fox
Jonathan Keogh
Eimear Cotter

Eimear Cotter

A mother of five, her younger brother and his friend have been found guilty of the murder Gareth Hutch.

Regina Keogh (41) had led a "blameless life", the Special Criminal Court found, but she was guilty of murder due to her "involvement in her brother's affairs".

A nephew of Gerry 'The Monk' Hutch, 35-year-old Gareth Hutch was shot dead in the car park outside Avondale House on North Cumberland Street, Dublin on May 24, 2016.

Yesterday, Keogh, Jonathan Keogh (33) and Thomas Fox (31) were found guilty of his murder.

Mr Justice Tony Hunt, presiding, with Judge Patricia Ryan and Judge Michael Walsh, said the court had no choice but to impose the mandatory life sentence.

He also said it was "reprehensible" of Jonathan Keogh to involve his sister in the murder.

Regina Keogh was in a very "unfortunate" position to receive the same sentence as her co-defendants, the judge said, as she had previously led a blameless life as well as being a good friend to key prosecution witness Mary McDonnell.

However, Judge Hunt said it was "easy" to be convicted of murder in the way the offence was defined in this country.

"All it takes is one contribution and that's enough, her's is a sad illustration of that," he added.

Judge Hunt expressed his condolences to the Hutch family, adding the murder had been seen and heard in "Technicolor" and it was "hard not to be struck by the depravity of what was seen on CCTV".

Judge Hunt also complimented the Garda investigation.

Speaking outside the Criminal Courts of Justice after the verdict, Assistant Commissioner Pat Leahy said gardaí took no satisfaction from what had happened in court.

"A really strong message came out from the court in respect of some of the people who were convicted.

"We had a mother of five children convicted, gardaí take no satisfaction from something like that," he said.

"We have sent out this message previously - you cannot get involved with these feuds even on the periphery and I think the court came out very strongly about that."

Asst Comm Leahy also acknowledged the work of gardaí, saying it was "an extraordinary investigation conducted by extraordinary people".

During the nine-week trial, evidence was given that Jonathan Keogh was one of the gunmen, together with Mr AB, who is not before the courts.

Regina Keogh was "central and fundamental" in the plan to kill Mr Hutch and helped to procure the use of protected witness Ms McDonnell's flat to stake out Hutch's flat.

She had also given surgical gloves to Ms McDonnell for the gunmen to use and arranged for money to be sent to her brother after he fled to Belfast.

Fox was the proposed getaway driver. He also retrieved the guns the night before the attack and brought them to Ms McDonnell's flat, the court heard.

Irish Independent

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