Man found guilty of internet cafe killing
“It was about him (Mr Fegan) hitting me and his attitude,” he said in a Garda interview.
He said that anger had built up after similar and worse episodes and caused him to lose control. He said one customer had refused to pay a €30 phone bill he had clocked up.
“I wanted to warn them not to do this,” he said. “When these people are around, other people are afraid to come in,” he added, explaining that he was referring to drinkers, drug addicts and people who speak loudly and rudely.
He said that although he did not like "these people", he was sorry Mr Fegan had died.
Mr Grehan said the defendant had over-reacted to something not of his own doing and that the law allowed the jury to recognise the human failing of over-reaction.
However, the jury did not agree with this and returned with the guilty verdict at 4.30pm yesterday.
Members of the victim’s family, who were in court throughout the trial, sobbed as Det Gda Niall O’Reilly read out their victim impact statements.
His mother, Rose Fegan, said it was hard to accept her son’s death. She said he was a loving son, the type who couldn’t do enough for her. She said he was a very soft person, who was always talking about his own son and daughter.
She said she was proud of how he had turned his life around after his problems with drugs.
His sister, Catherine Doyle, said Mr Fegan was a much loved son, brother and father, who was devoted to his children.
She said he was the first to lend a hand, whether with painting a room or laying a floor. She said his death had a devastating effect on the family.
“The violent way he died will haunt us for the rest of our lives,” she said.
The defendant’s wife of two and a half months then entered the witness box where she confirmed to Mr Grehan that she they had married on September 19th last, having known each other for a number of years.
Zhu Bai cried as she agreed that her husband truly regretted what had happened, which she said would not be in his character. She also said she wanted to wait for him until he would be freed.
Zhao then stood while Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy imposed the mandatory life sentence on him, backdating it by two months to take into consideration time already spent in custody.
Afterwards, Mr Fegan’s brother, John Fegan issued a statement thanking the jury for ‘serving justice’ on behalf of his brother and thanking the Gardaí involved as well as the prosecution counsel.
“Noel was a loving father, brother and son,” he concluded. “We will always miss you, Noel.”