Man claims he was under duress from gangland figure to steal

A jury has been told that a man accused of attempting to steal €1m from a cash-in-transit van over four years ago was acting under duress from gangland figure Eamonn Dunne.

A jury has been told that a man accused of attempting to steal €1m from a cash-in-transit van over four years ago was acting under duress from gangland figure Eamonn Dunne.

Joseph Warren (aged 30) of Belclare Crescent, Ballymun, has pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to conspiring to steal cash from Chubb Ireland at Tesco supermarket on the Shackleton Road in Celbridge on November 2, 2007.

Detective Inspector Eugene Lynch headed a surveillance operation that observed five other men, Eamonn Dunne, brothers Alan and Wayne Bradley, Jeffrey Morrow and Michael Ryan travelling in four different vehicles behind the cash-in-transit van as it drove from the Chubb Security base in Birch Avenue, Stillorgan to the Tesco Shopping Centre.

All six men were arrested that morning after Mr Warren and Mr Ryan were seen approaching the Chubb van as it was parked in Tesco Shopping Centre.

Mr Warren was carrying a consaw while Mr Ryan tried unsuccessfully to open the doors of the van with a set of keys he brought with him.

Det. Insp. Lynch told Alan Toal BL, defending, that he “could not say” when it was suggested to him that Mr Dunne was “public enemy number one” who was “supposed to have killed 17 people”.

He accepted a further suggestion from counsel that according to media sources, Mr Dunne was “a gangland figure of calibre” but said he had no evidence of that.

“He was an integral part of an organised criminal gang responsible for firearms, cash-in-transit robberies and drugs,” Det Insp Lynch said but again replied there was no evidence that he “would kill for the hell of it” as suggested by counsel.

“He was massively involved in the assassination of Baiba Saulite and no one could touch him for the amount of murders he carried out as leader of this gang,” Mr Toal said referring to what he termed “general held views in the media”.

Det. Insp. Lynch again repeated that he could not answer that.

He told Mr Toal that he had never been made aware that Mr Warren claimed he was acting under duress from Mr Dunne that day. The detective said his only role in the investigation was to lead the surveillance operation.

He said he was also unaware that Mr Warren had been the subject of a threat to his life in January or February 2008 and he had been formally warned by the gardai of this threat.

Darryl Caffrey (aged 37), the Chubb Security worker who was a passenger in the cash-in-transit van that day, told Deirdre Murphy SC, prosecuting, that he provided inside information to two men, knowing that it would be used to organise a robbery.

He said he gave the two men, previously unknown to him but whom he referred to as “Dog” and “Liverpool man”, information about the company, including the registration details of the unmarked delivery vehicles and how the safes were accessed. He said he handed this information over during a number of meetings in 2006 and 2007.

Mr Caffrey told the jury he had provided “Dog” with the registration details of four jeeps used by Chubb at the time after the man told him if he had that information he could get keys cut for the vehicles.

He informed “Dog” that Chubb headquarters had to be contacted by phone to open the safe and access cash before it was dropped off at an ATM. He also told him that Chubb workers wore casual clothes, drove unmarked jeeps and carried the money to the ATMs in sports bags.

Mr Caffrey said he had also been instructed to propose a suitable route which he felt would be an easy target for a gang to rob. He said he provided “Dog” with a map on October 30, 2007, with a route marked in black pen, of a specific run he regularly did in Ballymore Eustace, Wicklow.

Mr Caffrey said he was “given the impression” that it would be the Ballymore Eustace run that the gang would target.

He said “Dog” told him the gang would put up “road closed” and “diversion” signs along the route that would eventually lead to a building site. His jeep would then be surrounded by armed men, he and his colleague would be tied up, dumped off and their phones taken off them before the robbers would drive away in the van.

He said “Dog” told him he would get a phone call the day before “the job was going down” to give him time to get rid of his mobile phone and any links between them. He never got the call.

Mr Caffrey agreed with Mr Toal that he did not know any of the men that were arrested at the Tesco Supermarket that day. He confirmed that he did not know Mr Warren.

The trial continues before Judge Tony Hunt and a jury of seven women and four men.

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