McGeever's 'life threatened' - brother

Kevin McGeever photographed in 2003 with his Hummer. Photograph: Bryan O'Brien/The Irish Times

Kevin McGeever photographed in 2003 with his Hummer. Photograph: Bryan O'Brien/The Irish Times

Wed, Feb 6, 2013, 00:00

The brother of Kevin Michael McGeever has claimed the businessman was held captive in a dark room and threatened with his life on several occasions since his disappearance eight months ago.

Speaking to RTÉ’s The John Murray Show this morning, Brendan McGeever said his brother had been physically abused by his captors, who had not spoken to him during his incarceration.

“He didn’t see any of them, their faces were covered, he could just see their eyes,” he said.

“They handed him notes to look at… saying you have two more days to live. They put a gun to his forehead one time, and he said ‘do it now. Do it now, I have made my peace with my god.’ That happened quite a few times.”

He wasn’t blindfolded but the room was very dark, and he wouldn’t have known if it was night or day, Brendan McGeever said.


Kevin McGeever was found wandering the road between Swalinbar and Ballinamore in Co Leitrim last week. He was dishevelled and disorientated, with the word “thief” inked on his forehead.

He claims to have been kidnapped from his home in Craughwell, Co Galway, on May 27th last year.

He has been in Mullingar General Hospital since reappearing and, given his poor condition, gardaí have not been able to speak to him at length. He has lost several stone and has injuries, including a fractured knee. When found he was dressed in a plastic bag and was barefoot.

Gardaí are investigating his international business interests in countries such as Dubai, the US and Germany in an attempt to establish whether anyone would have wanted to harm him.

The analysis of bank accounts linked to Mr McGeever for the period he was missing should also help gardaí establish if cash was taken by the gang he has suggested were holding him hostage.

Garda sources have described much of the reports in the media in the past few days as “speculative”. The same sources have said gardaí have managed to speak him only in “snatches” and much of the information that has emerged publicly has not been relayed to gardaí by Kevin McGeever or those closest to him.

Hospital visit

Brendan McGeever said Kevin had not talked in detail about the kidnapping when he visited him in hospital on Sunday, but had described media speculation about Russian mafia involvement in his abduction as “nonsense”.

Brendan was contacted by gardaí in Galway shortly after his brother was reported missing last May, but said he “wasn’t worried initially” because Kevin would regularly spend periods of time overseas.

He said he became concerned when two texts, which seemed to come from Germany and the UK, were sent to Kevin’s partner Siobhan O'Callaghan saying he was sorry.

“That sounded strange,” he said.

Mr McGeever said he didn’t often talk about business with his brother, but knew he had been concerned about the economy in the United Arab Emirates and whether his business would be affected by it.

“It was quiet in recent times, there wasn’t much going on,” he said. “He was concerned about that.”

Brendan said he was shocked by his brother’s appearance when he saw him on Sunday.

“He looked like a weather beaten 90-year-old man who had just been released from a concentration camp,” he said.

“He was able to speak, his voice was good, and I shook his hand and it was like taking the hand of a child.”