‘Worst set of facts’ heard by trial jury

A murder trial jury has been told it has sat through one of the worst set of facts in relation to any murder in the history of the State.

The body of Bruno Lemes de Souza, aged 28, a Brazilian man living in Gort, Co Galway, had been found in a bog drain near Listowel, Co Kerry, some weeks after he called to a house near Ballyduff in north Kerry in connection with a car deal, the Central Criminal Court in Tralee has been told.

John Paul Cawley, of Ardoughter, Ballyduff, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Mr de Souza at Shronowen Bog, Tullamore, Listowel, on February 16 or 17, 2012.

The accused man had been living in the house with his sister Sandra, her two young children, her then partner, Wenio Rodriguez da Silva, and his brother Charlie.

Mr de Souza’s body was found on March 10. He had been stabbed 64 stab times, and two knives may have had been used, pathologist Dr Margot Bolster has said.

John Paul Cawley told detectives he had stabbed Mr de Souza first, but had done so only once and Mr de Souza had fallen into the dyke with Mr de Silva after him and the latter continued the stabbing.

The prosecution said yesterday Mr Cawley was responsible for his action.

“Three men went up a bog road, two with knives and one man with his hands tied... it was evident only two would come back,” Conor Devally, prosecuting, said.

Those two who would return were Wenio da Silva and John Paul Cawley.

“Mr Cawley was more than part of the team. He was a fully signed up player,”Mr Devally said.

Anthony Sammon, defending, told the jury in his closing speech,“Undoubtedly there has been a killing, a dreadful killing,”

They had sat through one of the worst set of facts in relation to any murder situations in the history of the State, Mr Sammon said.

However, in 2005, the Oireachtas directed there should be “a special defence for special people”, and this was the defence of diminished responsibility, he said “That is the hub and crux of the issue,” Mr Sammon said. There was very little quarrel between the prosecution and the defence as to what had occurred, Mr Sammon said. The defence of diminished responsibility was something only a jury could decide.

The jury had heard from clinical psychologist Brian Glanville who tested Mr Cawley and found “a disability “ and in particular his low scores in verbal reasoning meant he could not think or reason properly.

“This case is dominated by Mr Wenio. One hesitates to use the word monster,” Mr Sammon said.

John Paul Cawley along with his brother Charlie and sister Sandra partner had all been dominated by him.

Sandra was regularly beaten by him.

“Into his awful clutches comes two young men John Paul and Charlie,” Mr Sammon said.

Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy has begun his charge.

The charge is expected to end tomorrow and the jury to be sent out.


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