Wednesday 13 December 2017

Third man whose tiger raid conviction was quashed has been released on bail pending trial

Sonya McLean

A MAN who had his conviction quashed for the tiger kidnapping of a Securicor driver and his family has been granted bail pending his retrial.

Christopher Corcoran (64) of Bayside, Boulevard North, Dublin and had been jailed for 12 years in 2009 after he was convicted by a Dublin Circuit Criminal Court jury of robbing €2.28m from Paul Richardson and falsely imprisoning his wife and two sons.

His co-accused Mark Farrelly (37) of Moatview Court, Priorswood and Jason Kavanagh (34), of Parslickstown Court had been jailed for 25 years after they were convicted of similar charges.

They were also released on bail earlier this month pending a re-trial.

The men had their convictions overturned and a retrial ordered by the Court of Criminal Appeal in May. This followed a Supreme Court ruling that search warrants used in the investigation were unconstitutional.

The original trial lasted 66 days and was the longest criminal trial in Irish legal history.

The three men had denied robbing Mr Richardson and Securicor and had also pleaded not guilty to falsely imprisoning members of the Richardson family - Marie Richardson and her sons, Ian (then 17) and Kevin (then 13) - on March 13 and 14, 2005.

Detective Inspector Paul Scott told Derek Cooney BL, prosecuting he did not have an objection to Corcoran getting bail in principal but he felt the independent surety of €6,000, offered by the man’s ex-wife and daughter, was “insufficient” to guarantee his attendance at a possible re-trial.

The inspector agreed with Katherine Finn BL, defending, that “some” of the evidence against her client has “now been taken out of the equation” and the case against him has been “damaged”.

He further accepted that the original sentencing and trial judge Tony Hunt had accepted that Mr Corcoran had played a lesser role than the other two men.

Judge Martin Nolan granted bail on the conditions that the three men will have to sign in at a garda station twice daily, surrender their driver’s licenses and passports and have a mobile phone on them at all times on which gardai can contact them.

He accepted Mr Corcoran’s surety of €6,000 as sufficient and also made it a condition of his bail that he live with his daughter at Templeview Close, Clarehall, Dublin 13.

Mr Kavanagh was granted bail after coming up with a surety of €9,500, while Mr Farrelly was granted bail with the agreement of the State after he offered €38,000 as a surety.

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