Jury hears closing speeches in ‘brutal’ murder trial

Lawyers for the State have told a murder trial jury it is “inescapable” that the accused participated in the death of a man in Dublin more than two years ago.

Keith O’Neill, aged 39, of Lissadell Drive, Drimnagh, Dublin, has pleaded not guilty to murdering John Wilson, aged 35, on September 28, 2012, at his home on Cloverhill Rd, Ballyfermot.

In his closing speech, Conor Devally, prosecuting, described the shooting as a “brutal event”.

“This is a case of murder — Mr John Wilson was murdered,” he said, alleging that “the murder was one perpetrated by Mr O’Neill”.

“After the killing, [the accused] is easy to follow because there are kids trotting around beside him. He went to JD Sports and he has a transaction where he buys goods — goods into which he changes.

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“Mr O’Neill purchased a new wardrobe — he didn’t wait to get home before he wore them — he puts on all his new clothes and hangs around the shopping centre before going home,” said Mr Devally.

“Not long after he goes out with one of his children. There are various viewings of him going down the street carrying JD Sports bags. This journey was not just about household rubbish — a pair of runners, jeans, and two T-shirts were all disposed of.

“Evidence suggests that those jeans, when retrieved, were in the JD bag — there are particles on the jeans consistent with firearms residue.

“There was petrol on socks, residue on jeans, a phone and clothes disposed of — to explain them as being consistent with innocence is to sell yourselves short.

“The alternative is that this is the unluckiest man in Ireland,” he concluded.

Anthony Sammon, defending, said there was no evidence of a motive and nothing connecting Keith O’Neill with the gun found in the burnt-out car.

“There is not a scintilla of evidence in terms of motive. We do not have any connection between Keith O’Neill and the Ruger burnt-out gun in the car,” he said.

“There is nothing to attach Keith O’Neill with what was undoubtedly the killing gun.”

“You had the statement of the young daughter of the deceased man read to you,” he said. “Her statement was, ‘I don’t know who the bold boy was that did that to my dad but he was a little bit fat’ — that doesn’t fit with Mr O’Neill,” he said.

“If you want to say ‘twill do’, to a person accused of murder where the stakes are colossally high, you can.

“Why should you drop your standards just because other professionals have? Don’t.”

The trial continues.

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