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Tuesday 24 October 2017

Hunger strike prisoner in hospital

Members of the Garryowen Rugby club form the Guard of Honour at the funeral of rugby player Shane Geoghegan
Members of the Garryowen Rugby club form the Guard of Honour at the funeral of rugby player Shane Geoghegan

A prisoner on hunger strike as he awaits trial over the murder of rugby player Shane Geoghegan has been taken to hospital.

John Dundon was due to stand trial on Tuesday at the non-jury Special Criminal Court for the killing of the Garryowen player in 2008.

The 29-year-old from Hyde Road, Limerick, was taken from the high security Portlaoise prison to hospital after his condition deteriorated.

He told prison authorities last week that he had been refusing food and water.

Prison sources suggested he might have been refusing to eat for some time before that. Dundon has lost several stone.

It is understood he was incoherent and not speaking clearly when a decision was made to have him treated in hospital.

Last Friday he failed to have his trial for the murder of Mr Geoghegan adjourned. He had gone to the High Court to challenge the Special Criminal Court ruling that the case should not be delayed until 2014.

Dundon claimed the adjournment should have been granted because defence lawyers were given insufficient time to go through evidence, including hours of CCTV footage.

The trial is expected to last several weeks.

Mr Geoghegan was murdered outside his home at Clonmore, Kilteragh, Dooradoyle, Limerick, on November 9 2008. He had been watching an Ireland rugby international with friends and was shot several times as he returned home.

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