Keane trial moved to Dublin

The trial of five men charged with the murder of crime figure Kieran Keane - which has yet to hear any evidence - has already cost the taxpayer in the region of €200,000.

The trial of five men charged with the murder of crime figure Kieran Keane - which has yet to hear any evidence - has already cost the taxpayer in the region of €200,000.

The high profile murder trial, which was due to begin in Limerick last Tuesday, was finally moved to Dublin today following unsuccessful attempts to select a jury.

After three days of difficulties in selecting 12 jurors, Mr Justice Paul Butler, yesterday referred to the "exceptional circumstances of a case involving five accused men from a community with a relatively small population".

Mr Justice Butler said it was likely that if they tried to select a new panel of jurors in Limerick that the same problems would arise.

"It is my view in the light of our experience with the present panel, that there is no reason why similar difficulties would not be incurred with the next panel, in so far as this case is concerned," he said.

A total of 170 jurors were due to appear at the Central Criminal Court last Tuesday for the opening of the murder trial, but fewer than 100 turned up.

It’s understood a number of doctor certs had been submitted prior to the case.

After three days, the trial was left with a panel of just 10 jurors when a number of those who attended for jury service asked to be excused.

Today, Mr Justice Butler discharged the jury of ten and ruled that the trial be moved to the Central Criminal Court sitting in Dublin on November 4 next.

"The experience so far is that the sittings of the Central Criminal Court in Limerick have been highly successful. What occurred in the present case represented a glitch in that short record. It was due to the exceptional circumstances of a trial involving five accused from a community with a relatively small population and a case that is expected to last for at least eight weeks.

"I confidently expect that no such difficulties will arise in the vast majority of cases that may be tried in Limerick and I do know that a judge will be available for the Central Criminal Court sitting here on Tuesday November 4 next."

On Tuesday the five accused men pleaded not guilty to the murder of Kieran Keane at Drombana Co Limerick on January 29 last and to the attempted murder of his nephew Owen Treacy on the same date.

They also pleaded not guilty to falsely imprisoning the two men on the same date.

The five accused are James McCarthy, (24) Delmege Park, Moyross, David Stanners (31) Pineview Gardens

Moyross, Christopher Costelloe (20) Moylish Avenue, Ballynanty, Anthony McCarthy, (21), The Fairgreen and Dessie Dundon (20), Hyde Road, all in Limerick.

The five accused are represented by five separate senior counsel and five separate junior counsels along with instructing solicitors.

Prosecution for the state comprises of one senior counsel, one junior counsel and an instructing solicitor.

Legal fees alone to barristers and solicitors are estimated to be in the region of €100,000 over the three days.

In addition there were major costs associated with security for the trial, including the deployment of the garda helicopter, the sub aqua unit, members of the armed Emergency Response Unit, along with overtime costs for prison officers detectives and uniformed gardaí.

More in this section

IE_180_logo
Price info

Subscribe to unlock unlimited digital access.
Cancel anytime.

Terms and conditions apply

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.

Puzzles logo
IE-logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.