A MAN who withdrew a complaint of assault against a former associate of the Keane-Collopy gang assured Judge Eugene Oâ€™Kelly that he was not being pressured or intimidated.
Willie Moran, 50, of Dromroe, Rhebogue, was set to deny a charge he had assaulted Trevor McGuane on John Street on November 12, 2011.
But when the case was called at Limerick District Court, Inspector Seamus Ruane told Judge Oâ€™Kelly that the prosecution could not proceed as the alleged injured party wished to withdraw his complaint.
Mr McGuane was asked to take to the witness box to explain why and as he moved across the courtroom, Judge Oâ€™Kelly took exception to the manner in which Moran - who was sitting in the body of the court with his wife - had stood up.
Judge Oâ€™Kelly was on the point of adjourning the case, telling Moranâ€™s solicitor John Devane he was â€œnot at all satisfiedâ€ Mr McGuane was not â€œunder pressureâ€.
But both Mr Devane and his client protested that Mr Moran had only stood up because he had heard his name being called.
Asked by Judge Oâ€™Kelly whether he was under any pressure, Mr McGuane replied: â€œno, not at all your honourâ€.
He said he wished to let the matter rest â€œunder circumstances where we stay apart and have no interactionâ€.
â€œI want to be in peace. Whatever happened on the day happened on the day. I just want to leave it at that,â€ Mr McGuane said.
Judge Oâ€™Kelly told Mr McGuane that if he did not wish to proceed with the complaint, it could not be re-entered on a future date.
Insp Ruane said that in the circumstances, the matter would have to be struck out and Judge Oâ€™Kelly dismissed the case.
Mr Devane then said he wished to bring to the attention of the court what he described as a â€œsinister developmentâ€, where he had observed a prosecuting garda writing in his notebook 14 months after the alleged assault had taken place.
Judge Oâ€™Kelly said he would not hear the submission when the case was not going ahead.
Mr Moran previously gave evidence against former associates in the Keane-Collopy gang. In February 2011, Brian Collopy, 40, formerly of St Maryâ€™s Park, was jailed for eight years after he attempted to intimidate Moran ahead of the trial of his brothers, Kieran and Damian Collopy, for making threats to kill Willie Moran. Moran was for a period afforded 24-hour Garda protection.