Friday 28 October 2016

These vile killers are testing their convictions - and the public's patience

Joe O'Reilly
Joe O'Reilly

With only hours left to file the papers, Graham Dwyer this week lodged his appeal against his conviction for the murder of Elaine O'Hara.

The sex killer is expected to base his action on a number of issues. One of his grounds will be phone evidence, it's speculated. Another will be the decision to allow a witness, Darci Day, to give evidence via video link.

Of course, Dwyer has every right to lodge this appeal. He may be a depraved sex killer who murdered an innocent woman and caused huge pain for her family, and tried to cover it up afterwards - but he's still entitled to due process.

If he fails, I have no doubt that he, like that other convicted murderer Joe O' Reilly, may follow with other appeals, possibly on technical points of law.


O'Reilly is a man in need of a serious dose of reality. Last Monday he lost his third appeal action against his conviction for murdering his wife Rachel Callaly.

He was convicted in July 2007 of murdering Rachel at their home in October 2004. Since then he has spent eight years lodging a series of appeals.

But I suspect this week's one, which didn't even make it to a full hearing, may be the last. Hopefully it will be, and this will hopefully bring some closure to Rachel's family.

It's clear to me that Dwyer and O'Reilly, like many other serious criminals, lodge an appeal as a matter of course.

Do they really believe they will be freed?

Instead of wasting court time and, indeed, taxpayers' money, such criminals should pay heed to an old mantra: "If you can't do the time, don't do the crime."

End of story.

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