Tuesday 20 August 2019

Arson accused is found not guilty or torching haysheds

A 20-YEAR-OLD man has been acquitted in relation to a series of costly haybarn fires at Wexford Circuit Criminal Court.

Thomas Dempsey, of Flat 2, O'Donnell Flats, Main Street, Taghmon, and formerly with an address at Wilkinstown, Ballyhogue, pleaded not guilty to committing arson to a hayshed belonging to Christopher Harvey, at Kyle, Crossabeg, on October 31, 2009.

He also pleaded not guilty to setting fire to a hayshed belonging to Billy Lambert at Kilrane, on October 31, 2009; arson to a hayshed of John O'Connor at Coolcull, Taghmon, on October 31, 2009, and arson to a hayshed belonging to Peter Boggan at The Buildings, Taghmon, on October 31, 2009.

Legal submissions in the absence of the jury from Defence Counsel, Patrick Treacy, S.C. were rejected by Judge Barry Hickson.

Following charges to the jury by Prosecuting Counsel, Philip Sheahan, B.L., Defence Counsel and Judge Hickson, the jury after an absence of almost three hours returned a majority verdict of not guilty on each of the four charges.

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