herald

Thursday 19 October 2017

Murder suspects' DNA samples can be kept for 3 years

GARDAI investigating the gangland murder of a young man in a case of mistaken identity have been given three years to keep DNA samples taken from two suspects.

Detectives were granted the court order as they continue to probe the shooting last year of Dean Johnson (21).

The move had been opposed by lawyers for the two men, who are among four suspects and 20 "persons of interest" to investigating gardai.

But Judge Anthony Halpin noted the complex investigation was at an advanced stage and granted the application.

Dublin District Court heard gardai believe the killers had intended to use a second getaway car but could not get into it after dropping the key.

It is alleged DNA from the two suspects was retrieved from the car in a forensic examination.

Mr Johnson died after he was shot at Harelawn Green, Clondalkin, on August 24 last year.

pub

No one has been charged over his murder, including the two suspects, who cannot be named.

Detective Garda Padraig Jennings said Mr Johnson had left a pub when a car pulled up and two gunmen got out. One approached him and opened fire, fatally wounding Mr Johnson.

The gunmen fled in the car, which was found burnt out at Collinstown Crescent.

Gda Jennings said a car key was found at the scene and the car it belonged to was found in a housing estate.

It was alleged fingerprints from the two suspects were recovered from the scene.

They were arrested in September and a superintendent authorised the taking of DNA.

Det Gda Jennings said the retention of DNA samples was sought so a comprehensive file could be prepared for the DPP.

Defence solicitors John Bermingham and Yvonne Bambury argued the time being sought for the retention was excessive.

hnews@herald.ie

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