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Clues from 60 phones used in raid probe

GARDAI investigating a €2.28m tiger kidnapping sifted through call records of up to 60 mobile phones, a trial has heard.

These included the telephone records of one of the accused men, Niall Byrne (29, pictured), of Crumlin Road Flats, Crumlin Road, Dublin, and those of his long-term partner.

Niall Byrne and co-accused David Byrne (39), of Old Brazeel Way, Knocksedan, Swords, Co Dublin, have pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to falsely imprisoning the Richardson family at Ashcroft, Raheny, north Dublin, on March 13 and 14, 2005.

Both men have also pleaded not guilty to robbing Paul Richardson and Securicor of €2,280,000.

They are alleged to have been members of a gang that held Mr Richardson, a Securicor worker, and his family hostage as part of a raid in March 2005.

Detective Inspector Martin Mooney told Dominic McGinn, prosecuting, that the activity between nine mobile phone numbers could be linked by their time and location to the abduction of the Richardson family and the robbery of the cash-in-transit van.

He agreed that the mobile phone records showed some of the phones in Raheny at around the time the gang entered the Richardson's family home.

The records show other phones moving from the north of the city to the southside after 11pm, when the family said they were taken in a jeep from their home and driven south towards the Dublin mountains.



Delayed

Mr McGinn told the court that there was "an intense amount of communications" at around 7.35am on the morning of the robbery, corresponding with the time when Mr Richardson's cash-in-transit van became unexpectedly delayed in the Securicor depot.

Many of these calls were handled from a mobile phone mast in Chapelizod, close to where the raiders had instructed Mr Richardson to drop off the cash.

On the 10th day of the trial, the court heard that Niall Byrne was linked through marriage to Jason Kavanagh of Ladyswell, Mulhuddart, who was involved in the raid.

Det Insp Mooney agreed with Feargal Kavanagh, defending Niall Byrne, that two of the nine mobile phones linked in evidence earlier in the trial belonged to Niall Byrne and his partner Jennifer Coleman.

Witness Angela Landers told the court she was contacted by gardai because of calls made between her home phone and Mr Kavanagh's mobile. She said she knew Kavanagh because of his work as a tradesman.

The trial continues.

hnews@herald.ie


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