Murder accused 'can't explain' phone calls

A 23-year-old on trial for murder told gardaí he couldn't explain why there were phone calls between his mobile and that of the man he is accused of killing, during the time the man was dying in hospital.

Detective Garda Thomas Molloy was giving details to the Central Criminal Court of interviews he conducted with Angelo O'Riordan, who is on trial for the murder of Aidan Myers in December 2006.

O'Riordan denies the charge.

Detective Molloy told the jury O'Riordan was arrested in December 2007, a year after Mr Myers was allegedly attacked with a machete and run over at Faughart shrine, outside Dundalk town.

The witness said O'Riordan repeatedly denied knowing anything about the events “I know nothing about this, I have no involvement whatsoever” he told gardaí. He also said he had spent the night in question, December 12, 2006, at his home.

Gardaí put it to O'Riordan that Mr Myers' phone was stolen during his attack, and asked him to explain why six calls were made from Mr Myers' mobile phone to his, in the early hours of December 13, while Mr Myers was dying in hospital.

O'Riordan replied that “anyone could have had my phone” that night, because he had sold it the previous November, but had then bought it back again in January.

Gardaí told him he must have bought it for a reason, and asked if it was because of what happened to Mr Myers. O'Riordan said that he just wanted it back.

It is the prosecution's case that O'Riordan was part of a common design with a number of men on the night of December 12, and was involved in attacking Mr Myers and his friend with machetes at Faughart shrine.

The prosecution says O'Riordan got into a Mitsubishi space-wagon he had earlier hijacked, and rammed the Opel Astra Mr Myers had been travelling in, causing it to run over him as he lay injured on the ground.

Emergency services who arrived on the scene rushed Mr Myers to Louth County Hospital, but he died a few hours later after suffering three heart attacks.

The doctor who attended him gave evidence of seeing tyre tracks on his stomach.

O'Riordan, of Point Road, Bellurgan in Dundalk, is pleading not guilty to the murder. He also denies a second charge of assault and a third of hijacking in Dundalk town on December 12, 2006.

The prosecution's main witness, Daniel Mulholland, has told the court in previous evidence that O'Riordan made an alleged “confession” to him the day after Mr Myers died.

Mr Mulholland claims O'Riordan said he was out hijacking when “something went wrong” and he “ended up running over a man.”

The witness told the court O'Riordan also said his brother was going to Drogheda to burn out the car.

Defence lawyers for O'Riordan have argued that Mr Mulholland is lying, and say he only told gardaí about the alleged “confession” after they informed him he was under suspicion of involvement.

The trial resumes in the morning before the jury of six men and six women.

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