Friday 15 November 2019

Trainee mechanic sent for trial charged with manslaughter of journalist Eugene Moloney

Eugene Moloney and girlfriend Chichi Tran
Eugene Moloney and girlfriend Chichi Tran

Tom Tuite

A TRAINEE mechanic accused of killing journalist Eugene Moloney has been sent forward for trial.

Mr Moloney, a former reporter with the Irish Independent, lived at Portobello Place on Dublin's south side and was making his way home in the early hours of June 24 after a night out with friends.

The 55-year-old suffered a blow to the head on Camden Street; he received medical attention at the scene and was then rushed to St James' Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Gary Burch (21), of Kennington Close Templeogue, south Dublin, was charged two days later with the manslaughter of Mr Moloney.

He made no reply when he was charged, Garda Sergeant Sean McAvinchey had said.

The 21-year-old made his sixth appearance at Dublin District Court today.

State solicitor Catherine Irvine told Judge Victor Blake that the book of evidence had been served on Mr Burch and the DPP had consented to him being returned for trial to the present sittings of the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.

Dressed in a grey shirt, black trousers and black shoes, Mr Burch did not address the court during the brief hearing today and he has not yet indicated how he will plead.

Judge Blake advised him that if he intended to rely on an alibi in his defence he must notify the prosecution within 14 days. The judge then made an order sending the young man forward for trial.

He also agreed to a request from defence counsel James Cross to grant legal aid to the trainee mechanic.

The 21-year-old has not applied for bail and was today further remanded in custody. His case will be next listed for mention at the Circuit Court's current term which ends in December.

Journalist Eugene Moloney, who was from Donegal, had started his career in journalism with the Irish News in Belfast. He later relocated to Dublin where he worked for Independent Newspapers for more than 20 years.

In 1987, he began reporting for the Evening Herald. He moved to the Irish Independent and worked out of the paper's head office in Dublin, but had also reported extensively from the North at the height of the Troubles.

He had spent several years teaching English in Vietnam before returning to Ireland earlier this year and had been working as a freelance journalist.

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