Judge: 'Jury must decide if Redmond told the truth to gardaí'

The jury in George Redmond's corruption trial at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court has been told that "the core issue" for the jurors is to decide whether he told the truth to gardaí or later under oath to the Flood Tribunal.

Judge Joseph Matthews said the prosecution claimed he told the truth to gardaí following his arrest in 1999 at Dublin Airport when he said he got £10,000 from the late Fianna Fáil councillor Mr Patrick Dunne and repeated that admission later his old friend Mr Brendan O'Brien, a retired tax inspector turned tax advisor.

Judge Matthews said in his continuing charge to the jury that prosecuting counsel, Ms Pauline Walley SC (with Mr Patrick McGrath BL), described Mr Redmond's evidence under oath to the Flood (now Mahon) Tribunal as "rambling and incoherent" in contrast to what she said was his "clear statement of admission" to gardaí in 1999.

Judge Matthews also told the jury on day 17 of the hearing that the proposition by defence counsel, Mr Brendan Grehan SC (with Mr Angus Buttanshaw BL), on what he said was "the core essence of the case" for the jury to act on was "true in law".

This proposition was that Mr Redmond's statement to gardaí in 1999 was true and the jury had to be satisfied that the statement he gave to gardaí and to officers of the Criminal Assets Bureau was "true and accurate".

Judge Matthews said Mr Grehan was totally entitled to the opinion he expressed to the jury that to convict Mr Redmond in this case was also to convict the Dunne family. Mr Redmond at the Tribunal had withdrawn his 1999 statement of having received money from the late Mr Dunne.

Judge Matthews also noted that while Mr Redmond had been convicted and jailed at 80 years of age in relation to money from Mr Brendan Fassnidge, this conviction was later quashed by the Court of Criminal Appeal.

Mr Redmond (aged 84) of College Gate, Castleknock, has pleaded not guilty to two charges arising out of a compulsory purchase order on 167 acres of land at Buzzardstown and Coolmine, in north-west Dublin when he was an Assistant County Manager.

He denies receiving £10,000 from Mr Dunne on a date between October 10, 1985 and June 26, 1989 as an inducement in respect of the compulsory purchase order (CPO) and to receiving the money 'as a reward for showing favour to another' in relation to the same land.

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