Saturday 18 November 2017

Thomas 'Slab' Murphy trial: cash and cheques found in outhouse search

Thomas 'Slab' Murphy
Thomas 'Slab' Murphy

Daniel Hickey

THE trial at the Special Criminal Court in Dublin of prominent republican Thomas "Slab" Murphy for alleged tax evasion has heard that members of the Criminal Assets Bureau found cash and cheques during the search of an outhouse on the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

It is the prosecution's case that, although Mr Murphy conducted significant dealings in relation to cattle and land, and received farming grants from the Department of Agriculture, he failed to make any returns to revenue.

Mr Murphy (66), of Ballybinaby, Hackballscross, Co Louth, has pleaded not guilty to nine charges alleging that he failed to furnish a return of his income, profits or gains or the source of his income, profits or gains to the Collector General or the Inspector of Taxes for the years 1996/97 to 2004.

Mr Murphy is being prosecuted on foot of an investigation by the Criminal Assets Bureau.

Today, a statement made by Detective Sergeant Tony Brady was read by prosecuting counsel Paul Burns SC to the three-judge, non-jury court.

The court heard that, on March 9th, 2006, members of CAB searched an outhouse at Ballybinaby, Hackballscross, County Louth, that the outhouse faced a road in Northern Ireland, and that it had been sold to Patrick Murphy.

While searching the outhouse, the CAB detectives found cash, cheques, and documentation related to the oil industry and to farming and livestock, the court heard.

The court further heard that the total cash found in the plastic bags was 256,235euro and 111,185sterling.

Evidence was also given today by a chartered accountant, who works with CAB and cannot be named for legal reasons.

The chartered accountant told the court that he examined and analyzed a bank account opened in the name of Thomas Murphy.

From 1996 to 2006, the total debit on the account was 624,807.49euro and the total credit was 668,182.45euro, the court heard.

When asked by Mr Burns about the pattern of activity on the account, the chartered accountant said, "In some years there was significant activity. In other years there was a much lower level of activity, which reflects the levels of sales by Mr Murphy during the year."

"When you say Mr Murphy who are you referring to?" Mr Burns asked.

The chartered accountant replied, "I'm referring to Thomas Murphy."

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