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Friday 19 July 2019

Pictured: Man who had €60k claim thrown out says 'Oh, I see you've been looking at my Facebook'

  • Exclusive pictures of man who did triathlon five weeks after suffering 'incapacitating injuries'
  • €60k claim dismissed on basis he misled court about previous medical history
  • Previously settled claim for €20k after water slide accident in 2012
  • Did not disclose details of earlier claim to the court
Graham Dunne pictured wearing a 'Gaelforce West 2013 t-shirt' and inset, Croagh Patrick
Graham Dunne pictured wearing a 'Gaelforce West 2013 t-shirt' and inset, Croagh Patrick

Amy Molloy and Ray Managh

A man questioned in court about competing in a triathlon five weeks after suffering "incapacitating injuries" responded: "Oh, I see you've been looking at my Facebook."

Graham Dunne (41), of Castlecurragh Park, Blanchardstown, had his €60,000 claim thrown out of the Circuit Court on Wednesday on the basis he gave misleading information regarding his previous medical history.

Exclusive pictures obtained by show the father-of-two wearing a 'Gaelforce West 2013' t-shirt while out running.

Gaelforce West is a one-day adventure race which involves kayaking, a 58km cycle and a 15km run up Croagh Patrick.

When asked about his participation in Gaelforce West, Mr Dunne said the last time he competed in that race was 2014.

Evidence of him wearing a t-shirt from the event in 2013 was then put to him and he admitted that he had participated in the event in 2013 - five weeks after he suffered injuries in a biking accident allegedly involving a hit and run driver.

Under cross-examination it was also put to him that he undertook a course in Krav Maga, an extreme martial art fighting self-defence class which the Israeli Defence Forces are trained in.

He admitted taking part in this also.

Graham Dunne pictured jogging while wearing a Gaelforce West 2013 t-shirt
Graham Dunne pictured jogging while wearing a Gaelforce West 2013 t-shirt

Conor Kearney, counsel for the Motor Insurance Bureau of Ireland, which compensates victims of untraced motorists, told the court that Mr Dunne had misled a doctor about his past medical history.

He said that during an examination by Dr Pat O’Neill, a sports injury specialist, Mr Dunne had concealed information about a second accident at the National Aquatic Centre in which he had sustained head and neck injuries and which he had settled out of court for €20,000.

Mr Dunne denied that he deliberately intended to do this.

Judge Groarke dismissed the claim and remarked that those who fail to disclose material facts do so at their peril. 

Mr Dunne was contacted for comment but did not respond.

The verdict was welcomed by David Fitzgerald, chief executive of the MIBI.

Mr Fitzgerald told that the MIBI are taking a "tough stance" on suspicious claims and have adopted a "fighting fraud" strategy.

"We're prepared to spend money fighting these cases in court as in the long term, we are getting some good results from the judiciary. We want to make sure that there is enough money available there for genuine people," he said.

The MIBI generated over €2.5 million in fraud savings in the first nine months of last year, while 266 cases were flagged as suspicious and investigated.

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