The trial of a man and a teenager charged with the killing of popular Oughterard publican and teacher John Kenny could not go ahead at Galway Circuit Criminal Court this week as they failed to turn up and bench warrants for their arrest were subsequently issued.
The case of Marian Lingurar (36 ) of Orchard Court, Blackpool, Co Cork, and his co-accused - a now 18-year-old boy but who had been a minor at the time of the offence - had been listed for hearing for last Tuesday’s sitting of Galway District Court before Judge Keenan Johnson. However, when the case was called it was discovered that the two were not present in court.
Lingurar had been brought before Galway District Court in February 2012, along with then 17-year-old co-accused, both charged with the manslaughter of 56-year-old Mr Kenny at Kenny’s Bar on Main Street, Oughterard, on September 25, 2011. They were also charged with withholding information from investigating gardai. Lingurar had been refused bail in the district court but was later granted bail in the High Court.
However, the two Romanian nationals failed to make an appearance in court this week to face the charges. Leading the investigation, Superintendent Noel Kelly of Salthill Garda Station, gave evidence that the two had been present at a sitting of Galway District Court last March when the date for the trial had been set. He stressed that they had been fully aware that the trial had been due to begin. An application made by state solicitor, Conor Fahy, to issue bench warrants for their arrest was then granted by Judge Johnson. It had been expected that the trial was to last for approximately two to three weeks.
A third Romanian man, Florin Fitzpatrick (38 ) formerly of The Green, College Road, Galway, was sentenced to five years in prison in December of last year for withholding information during the Garda investigation into the death of Mr Kenny. Fitzpatrick denied withholding information between 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 person, in relation to the unlawful death of Mr Kenny, contrary to Section 9 of the Offences Against the Person Act, 1998. During the lengthy trial it was revealed that Mr Kenny’s body had found bound and gagged in the pub’s toilet.