Wednesday 21 February 2018

Thomas 'Slab' Murphy trial: Further evidence heard in relation to cattle trading and rental payments

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 been listening to evidence in relation to the trading of cattle and payments made for land rental.

It is the prosecution's case that, although Mr Murphy conducted significant dealings in relation to land and cattle, 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.

A County Meath farmer who rented land to Mr Murphy told the three-judge, non-jury court that he cannot remember the accused ever giving him money.

Prosecution witness Brian Garvey told Paul Burns SC, prosecuting, that he rented land to Mr Murphy and his brothers. “I met the three of them and they were all involved,” he said.

He started renting land to the brothers in 1997 or 1998, he told the court.

“I can't remember Tom [the accused] ever handing me money,” he said.

Earlier, the court heard evidence from Department of Agriculture employee Brid Cannon about the trading of cattle by a man named Thomas Murphy from 2000 to 2005.

Ms Cannon agreed with John Kearney QC, defending, that there was “a considerable degree of intra-herd trading” between herds belonging to Thomas Murphy, Francis Murphy and Rosemary and Marie Murphy.

The afternoon's proceedings were taken up with legal argument.

The trial resumes on Tuesday.

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