Witness giving evidence as he wants ‘justice’ for Adrian Donohoe

Daniel Cahill says murder accused Aaron Brady told him on three occasions that he shot a garda

Aaron Brady (28) from New Road, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh has pleaded not guilty to the capital murder of Det Garda Adrian Donohoe. File photograph: Collins

Aaron Brady (28) from New Road, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh has pleaded not guilty to the capital murder of Det Garda Adrian Donohoe. File photograph: Collins

 

A witness in the trial of a man accused of murdering a detective garda has said he decided to give evidence because he wanted justice for Adrian Donohoe and his family.

Daniel Cahill (28), giving evidence to the Central Criminal Court on Wednesday via videolink from New York, denied several times that he feared he would be sent to a detention centre for people with no legal status in the US if he did not give a statement to gardaí.

“I took this on myself because I have many friends who are law enforcement officers and I wanted justice done for this man, for Garda Adrian Donohoe’s family,” he said.

Mr Cahill also said that he was not giving testimony to secure his own status in the US. He said he is married to a US citizen and his status is determined by her and through a process with the Department of Homeland Security.

“It is not determined by this court case,” he added.

Mr Cahill told defence counsel Justin McQuade BL that Homeland Security officials would not have come to his door “if your client hadn’t shot a guard”.

Under cross examination, Mr Cahill denied being present during an assault on the man accused of murdering Det Garda Donohoe. He also denied stealing Mr Brady’s telephone.

Mr Brady (28), from New Road, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh, has pleaded not guilty to the capital murder of Det Garda Adrian Donohoe while he was on active duty on January 25th, 2013 at Lordship Credit Union, Bellurgan, Co Louth.

He has also pleaded not guilty to a charge of robbing some €7,000 in cash and assorted cheques on the same date at the same location.

Three occasions

In his direct evidence last Monday, Mr Cahill, a bartender, said the accused told him on three separate occasions that he shot a garda in Ireland.

On Wednesday he told Mr McQuade that he was aware that in 2015 there was an allegation that Mr Brady slept with a woman who was at the time going out with one of Mr Cahill’s friends. Mr Cahill denied that he was one of a group of four men who entered Mr Brady’s apartment while the accused was asleep in 2015 and assaulted him. He said that he was working that night and there are pictures on Facebook to prove it.

“I have never assaulted Aaron Brady in my life. I have never put a hand on him,” he said.

Mr Cahill said that Homeland Security agents searched his home some years ago looking for Dean Evans, who has since been jailed for life for the murder of dissident republican Peter Butterly in Co Meath on March 2013.

He said he welcomed the agents into his home and allowed them to search it. He told them he had not spoken to Evans in years and allowed them to check his phone. They were satisfied when they left, Mr Cahill added.

When in July 2019 Homeland Security agents again called to his home, he said they asked if he would be wiling to speak to gardaí about Mr Brady. They told him he did not have to and one agent, Mary Ann Wade, said Homeland Security was there to protect his rights.

Not aware

He said this was the only conversation he can remember having with Homeland Security at that time and said he was not aware that an enforcement and removal operations officer was part of the team that came to his home.

He denied on numerous occasions that he feared he would be sent to a detention centre if he did not give a statement about Mr Brady.

In a brief reexamination following two days of cross examination, Brendan Grehan SC, for the prosecution, asked Mr Cahill if he had lied in his evidence.

“I have not lied at all,” he replied. “My recollection has got me on some aspects but I have not lied.”

The trial continues.