Accused 'named gunmen he drove to shooting'

A man on trial for murder allegedly named the two gunmen he drove to and from the shooting of Limerick man, Eddie Ryan Senior, a Central Criminal Court jury has heard.

A man on trial for murder allegedly named the two gunmen he drove to and from the shooting of Limerick man, Eddie Ryan Senior, a Central Criminal Court jury has heard.

Paul Coffey named Kieran Keane as one of two gunmen who shot Eddie Ryan in a busy city centre pub in November 2000, according to replies he allegedly gave to gardai during interrogation in Mayorstone Garda station almost a month after the killing.

In the Central Criminal Court in Dublin, Mr Coffey denies a murder charge, and, cross-examining Garda witnesses on his behalf, Mr Michael Moloney BL said his client denies he named the two gunmen to gardai.

Mr Moloney told the jury that Paul Coffey will say he never named Kieran Keane or the other alleged gunman, and that he never mentioned any names to the gardaí. But the defence admit he did describe driving two men to the Moose bar, without naming them.

The prosecution alleges that Coffey drove the getaway car, a stolen vehicle, and that he later carried out the instructions of Kieran Keane to "get rid of it". The car was later found burned out.

Detective Garda Gerard Hogan and Garda Joe Stack (formerly a detective garda) gave evidence that Paul Coffey went in an unmarked garda car and retraced the route he had taken to and from the Moose Bar with the gunmen, and the spot where he allegedly set fire to the car.

Detective Garda James B Hanley (retired) read a statement Coffey allegedly made to gardaí on the third day of his detention admitting that he drove the gunmen to the murder scene and dropped them off in a housing estate afterwards.

Coffey (aged 26), whose last address was at Craeval Park, Moyross, Limerick, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Edward ('Eddie') Ryan (aged 41) of Hogan Avenue, Kileely, Limerick, at Cathedral Place in Limerick city on November 12, 2000.

Eddie Ryan was shot 11 times and died of multiple gunshot wounds to the trunk, the deputy state pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy has told the trial.

Detective Gda Gerard Hogan also denied in evidence a defence claim that he offered a deal to Coffey if he turned state witness, under which, Coffey, his partner Michelle Ryan and their children would be placed in the Witness Protection Progamme and brought to the USA.

Detective Garda Hogan told the trial that he offered no inducements to the accused man to get him to make statements in custody and nor did he offer him a place on the Witness Protection Programme. He also denied an allegation that he had assaulted the accused or held him up against a wall with a chair for a long period during his detention.

Under cross-examination from Mr Michael Moloney BL, for Coffey, Detective Garda Hogan denied he had assaulted Paul Coffey during his detention in Mayorstone garda station, Limerick, between December 7 and 10 2000.

Re-examined by Shane Murphy SC, prosecuting, Det Gda Hogan agreed that at no stage, either during the detention or during a subsequent District Court hearing, did Paul Coffey or his solicitor make a complaint alleging assault, inducements or any improper behaviour on the part of the gardai who interrogated him.

The trial continues tomorrow before Mr Justice Abbott in the Central Criminal Court. The court sat on Saturday and it is sitting longer hours this week in an attempt to finish the trial.

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