Man charged over €150,000 arson attack on three hay barns

A man who allegedly set fire to three hay barns causing €150,000 worth of damage has been remanded in continuing custody.

John Ryan, aged 23, of Carraig Beg, Doon, Co Limerick, appeared before Limerick District Court yesterday, charged with three counts of arson, and one count of theft.

Mr Ryan was arrested after the armed garda Regional Support Unit were deployed to South East Limerick after a spate of arson attacks on farmers’ lands.

He is charged with setting fire to a barn belonging to farmer and publican Pat Whelan, at Clonlusk, Doon, on a date between September 27 and 28, 2015. Damage estimated at €50,000 was caused and two bullocks were burnt to death.

Mr Ryan is also charged with stealing tools and farm equipment worth €1,000, the property of Liam Ryan, on January 1, 2015, at Dromalty, Cappamore.

He is further charged with arson on October 5, 2015, at a barn, the property of farmer John Hayes, at Toomaline, Doon. The barn with 250 bales of hay and straw was destroyed at a cost of €50,000.

In reply to this charge, Mr Ryan allegedly told gardaí: “I’m sorry”.

Mr Ryan is also charged with arson on October 6, 2015, at a hay barn of farmer Sean Fitzgibbon, at Ballyvalode, Oola, Co Limerick, with damage of €50,000 .

Mr Ryan has been granted fee legal aid. He was remanded in continuing custody to appear before Limerick District Court on July 26.


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