FAKE kidnap victim Kevin McGeever kept a low profile as he made a rare trip from his apartment to buy some groceries – and a copy of the Irish Independent.
Dressed in a full-length black overcoat and heavy shades, the 68-year-old, who previously claimed he was abducted and held hostage for eight months, was spotted by photographer Padraig O'Reilly shopping at his local SuperValu in Killester, north Dublin.
He was seen buying yoghurts, cheese and ham – a reminder of the ham sandwiches he claimed to have been fed by his captors.
This is one of the first occasions that Mr McGeever has been seen in public since he was found wandering a country road in Co Leitrim in January.
He was bearded and emaciated, and claimed to have been held by a gang in a steel bunker since last May.
Last month, however, he finally admitted that he had concocted the whole story and apologised after gardai arrested him for wasting their time. He told detectives that he staged the kidnap in an attempt to get angry investors off his back.
But the Mayo man was not prepared to share his bizarre story when he was approached for an interview by the Irish Independent.
"I am not saying anything to you . . . now you can f**k off," the former developer snapped as he left the store with his supplies. He had brought his own shopping bag, from budget supermarket Lidl.
Mr McGeever kept his head down as he made his way back to his car, a 2011 reg two-seat black Opel Tigra worth about €13,800. It is a far cry from the expensive vehicles that he has driven in the past – including Ferrari, Porsche and Mercedes models.
He then drove off and returned to the apartment, which is owned by his partner Siobhan O'Callaghan, who is suffering from terminal cancer.
Mr McGeever is being investigated by the Criminal Assets Bureau over whether he has any outstanding tax issues, and is also facing questions about property deals in Dubai.
He still looked thin but his condition has improved greatly since he emerged from hiding in January.
Gardai from Gort, who investigated his abduction claim, were stunned that he had effectively starved himself in order to lose around seven stone in an attempt to stand up his tall tale.
When he was initially picked up in Leitrim, he claimed he had been held by armed men and forced to live on a diet of ham sandwiches and water during his ordeal.
The former international property developer, who owes several million euro to investors around the country who paid deposits on properties in Dubai, appears to have caused more problems for himself as a result of his extreme ruse.
On top of a large number of clients, the CAB are understood to be also in the process of finalising a hefty tax demand for him.
And based on his recent admissions to gardai, he is also likely to be charged in the near future with wasting police time.
He will also have to deal with outstanding international arrest warrants issued by police in Dubai who are investigating property deals.