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Monday 20 November 2017

Biker was shot in head over turf war with rival club, murder trial told

Victim Andrew O'Donoghue
Victim Andrew O'Donoghue

A biker shot a member of a rival motorcycle club dead over a territorial dispute in Limerick, a prosecuting barrister told a murder trial jury yesterday.

Alan McNamara (50), of Mount Fune, Murroe, Co Limerick, denies murdering Andrew O'Donoghue (51) in Murroe.

His stepson Robert Cusack is charged with impeding Mr McNamara's apprehension, knowing or believing him to have committed a serious offence.

Mr Cusack (28) has also pleaded not guilty and both men are being tried together at the Central Criminal Court.

Opening the trial, Michael Delaney, for the prosecution, told the jury it would hear evidence that Mr O'Donoghue, a retired carpenter, was a member of the Mount Fune-based Road Tramps motorcycle club.

Mr McNamara left the Road Tramps in the 2000s and later became a member of the Limerick City-based Caballeros club.

Counsel told the jury it would hear evidence that the shooting was linked to a territorial dispute between the two clubs.

On June 19, 2015, Mr McNamara and his wife went by bike to Kelly's pub in the village of Doon in Limerick.

Mr McNamara was wearing the colours of the Caballeros. This, Mr Delaney said, was a "provocative act" as Doon is in the Road Tramps' area.

When word got out, three members of the Road Tramps went to Doon to confront Mr McNamara and, as he left the pub, he was set upon by two of these men.

Manhandled

His colours were forcibly removed, leaving Mr McNamara "very vexed" at the insult to him and his club.

Giving evidence, Seamus Duggan told Mr Delaney that he and two other Road Tramps went to Doon, where they saw Mr McNamara coming out of the pub. One of them told Mr McNamara to take off his colours.

"He didn't, so they manhandled him," Mr Duggan told the court, adding: "They removed his waistcoat from him."

Mr Duggan and the two others then left in a car. As they pulled away, he said Mr McNamara threw his helmet at the side of the car and shouted, "You're dead" at one of them.

The following day, Mr Duggan was in Doon when he saw a man he knew to be a member of the Caballeros pass him in a car.

He said he drove in his van at speeds up to 160kmh to the Road Tramps clubhouse as he tried to get away from his pursuers.

He said Mr O'Donoghue was at the clubhouse waiting when Mr McNamara arrived carrying a sawn-off shotgun.

Counsel said there would be evidence Mr McNamara then shot Mr O'Donoghue once in the head at point blank range.

The trial continues today.

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