Saturday 17 March 2018

Publican's attacker fails in appeal bid

Luke Byrne

MILLIONAIRE publican Charlie Chawke has "nothing bad" to say about the man who shot him almost eight years ago, his daughter said yesterday.

Frank Ward (57) failed in an appeal against his conviction for the shooting at a hearing of the Court of Criminal Appeal in Dublin yesterday.

Father-of-three Ward, from Knockmore Avenue, Tallaght, shot Mr Chawke in the car park of the Goat Grill, Goatstown, on October 6, 2003, during a robbery.

Mr Chawke had to have his right leg amputated above the knee following the attack. Asked if he would comment on the failed appeal, his daughter Lisa Chawke told the Irish Independent yesterday that her father would not have anything bad to say about the attacker.

Mr Chawke has previously said that he would like to make peace with Ward.

"I want to shake his hand and say that there are no bad feelings between us and tell him everything is totally forgiven," he said.

He also expressed regret that he had not had the chance to visit Larry Cummins, Ward's accomplice in the raid, who died in 2009.

During the robbery, Mr Chawke had tried to seize the pump-action shotgun carried by Ward but fell and was shot in the leg.

Ward, who robbed Mr Chawke of almost €50,000, told his victim, "I will sort you out".

He had pleaded guilty to five charges relating to assault causing serious harm and possession of a firearm.

Among 26 grounds of appeal, Ward claimed that the trial judge wrongfully refused to exclude all Fianna Fail members from the jury.

He said that the jury should have been vetted to exclude all Fianna Fail members as Mr Chawke had "bankrolled" a former Taoiseach and jurors who were members of the party would show bias against him.

Ward, who represented himself, also argued that he pleaded guilty to the charges because he had "lost confidence" in the trial process and his health had been affected by stress and lack of food and water.

Irish Independent

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