The trial of a man charged with withholding information during a Garda investigation into the killing of popular Oughterard publican and teacher John Kenny continued this week following lengthy legal arguments.
Last week, the second week of the trial, the jury had been sent away while legal argument took place. The case resumed before the jury last Friday and resumed earlier this week.
At Galway Circuit Criminal Court yesterday an application for an amendment in relation to the dates of the offence on the indictment was granted by Judge Gerard Griffin. The accused man, Florin Fitzpatrick, a 38-year-old Romanian man formerly of The Green, College Road, was re-arraigned and pleaded not guilty to the charge of withholding information between the amended dates of September 25 and 28, 2011, by failing to disclose to gardai information which he knew or believed might be of assistance in securing the apprehension, prosecution, or conviction of any other person, in relation to the unlawful death of John Kenny (56 ) at his pub on Main Street, Oughterard, contrary to Section 9 of the Offences Against the Person Act, 1998.
Before concluding the prosecution’s case, Remy Farrell SC, explained to the jury that the dates on the indictment had been from September 25 to October 4 and that the latter date had been when the accused was interviewed by gardai. He said that it was necessary to “simplify the case by reducing the dates to the 28th” which was the date Fitzpatrick had been arrested.
The jury then viewed video footage of one interview which took place between the accused man and investigating gardai. When put to him that he was withholding information and had persisted in telling gardai “untruths” Fitzpatrick denied this, telling gardai that he was “innocent” and had answered all their questions. Further details of the footage cannot be mentioned due to legal reasons.
The trial continues.