Protected witness says accused was in house where Limerick man was 'nailed to floor'


Daniel Hickey


Daniel Hickey


Protected witness says he was in house where Limerick man was 'nailed to floor'

The trial is being heard at the non-jury Special Criminal Court

A PROTECTED witness has told the Special Criminal Court that a Limerick man accused of assaulting and falsely imprisoning another man was in the house where the alleged attack occurred. 

It is the prosecution case that three men were involved in a “joint enterprise” during which Dan Quilligan (53) was beaten and his left foot nailed to the kitchen floor of a house at Larch Court, Kennedy Park. 

Mark Heffernan, aged 33, of Swallow Drive, John Carew Park, Southill, has pleaded not guilty to assaulting Mr Quilligan, causing him harm on September 14, 2015. He also denies falsely imprisoning him at the same address on the same date. 

Last week, Gerard Mackin, aged 34, a native of Northern Ireland with an address at Star Court, John Carew Park, Southill, and Patrick Hayes, aged 54, who has an address at Larch Court, Kennedy Park, both pleaded guilty to assaulting Mr Quilligan.

Giving evidence this Tuesday, Tom Lillis told Tara Burns SC, prosecuting, that in September 2015 he was living at the house in Larch Court with two other men including Patrick Hayes.

On the morning of September 14, Mr Lillis was in the sitting-room drinking with two men when several men, including Gerard Mackin, Mark Heffernan and Dan Quilligan, came to the house.

The witness said that Mr Heffernan and Mr Mackin came into the sitting-room and told him to “f**k off out of here”. They were wearing white suits and one of them was holding “some sort of machine thing”. 

Mr Lillis said the two men went into the kitchen.

He said he then left the house and went to the Spotted Dog pub in Janesboro, where he got €20 from another man before going to the off-licence.

When he returned to the house at Larch Court, Patrick Hayes was “frothing” and there was “blood all over the kitchen”.

Mr Lillis said that he asked Hayes, “What are you after doing?”

Hayes then asked him to clean up the kitchen.

The evidence is being heard as part of a voir dire - or ‘trial within a trial’ - to help the judges determine its admissibility. 

The trial continues before Mr Justice Tony Hunt, Judge John O’Hagan and Judge Ann Ryan.