Man accused of witness intimidation may make admissions that will shorten his trial

Man Accused Of Witness Intimidation May Make Admissions That Will Shorten His Trial
Dean Byrne (30) may make a number of admissions to the Special Criminal Court on Wednesday that will shorten his trial. Photo: PA
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Eoin Reynolds

A man accused of conspiring to pervert the course of justice during the trial of a garda murderer may make a number of admissions to the Special Criminal Court on Wednesday that will shorten his trial.

Padraig Dwyer SC, for Dean Byrne, said that he is considering a "shopping list" of 35 proposals put forward by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) that the defence might not require to be formally proven.


He said some of the issues relate to searches of his client's cell in Mountjoy prison and the obtaining of warrants. Some of the 35 issues, he said, are already resolved, some cannot be admitted and others could be admitted if reworded.

Mr Dwyer said the admissions could shorten the trial to two to three weeks as opposed to the 14 weeks that were originally set aside.

Mr Justice Paul Burns, presiding at the three-judge, non-jury court, adjourned the trial to Wednesday to allow the parties to continue working on the outstanding admissions.

Dean Byrne (30), from Cabra Park, Phibsborough, Dublin, is on trial having pleaded not guilty to conspiring to persuade prosecution witness Daniel Cahill not to give evidence at Aaron Brady's murder trial in order to pervert the course of justice between April 8th, 2020, and June 22nd, 2020.


Brady would later be convicted by a jury of the murder of Det Gda Adrian Donohoe during a credit union robbery at Lordship, Bellurgan, Co Louth on January 25th, 2013. His trial took place amid what was described by lawyers for the DPP at the time as a campaign of intimidation by associates of Brady.

Brady was due to go on trial with Mr Byrne but last week Brady pleaded guilty to embarking on a course of conduct intended to pervert the course of justice on a date between February 20th and May 7th, 2020.

Brady accepted that he was responsible for recording the playing of an interview between gardaí and a man named Ronan Flynn at a New York police station in which Mr Flynn said he heard Brady admit to the murder multiple times.

The video that was recorded by Brady was uploaded to social media during Brady's trial with text accusing Mr Flynn of "touting" and claiming he had criminal charges against him dropped in the US in return for his testimony.


In his opening speech last week, Lorcan Staines SC, for the DPP, said that Brady and Mr Byrne shared a landing in Mountjoy prison during Brady's murder trial.

Mr Staines outlined a number of exchanges on a phone found in Mr Byrne's cell including one in which Mr Byrne referred to the fact that Daniel Cahill was to give evidence against Aaron Brady. "The young fella is trying to live a life and people are saying he done something he didn't do," Mr Byrne is alleged to have said in one audio message in which he is also alleged to have offered to send transcripts of Mr Cahill's garda statements.

Mr Staines said it is clear from the messages that Dean Byrne knew from speaking to Aaron Brady when Daniel Cahill was due to give evidence, information that was not in the public domain. Mr Staines said Mr Byrne also referenced a key element of what would later be the defence's cross-examination of Mr Cahill  – that the witness had been caught by Homeland Security in America with cannabis in his apartment.

In another message, it is alleged Mr Byrne told a person "he is doing that on Monday, bro" in what Mr Staines said was a reference to Mr Cahill's scheduled testimony. In another message he wrote: "He's doing that this week, will you try and talk to him? It's not on."


On the same day, Mr Byrne is alleged to have had a conversation with a man who said he would "do damage" to Mr Cahill.

Mr Byrne's trial continues before Mr Justice Paul Burns, Her Honour Judge Elma Sheahan and Judge Marie Keane.

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