Dubliner jailed for his part in IRA kneecapping
Man pleaded guilty of firearm possession and intent to commit assault in 2013
The three-judge court previously heard that the Special Detective Unit had received confidential information that there was to be unlawful IRA activity and movement around Dublin on January 18th 2013.
A Dublin “family man” has been sentenced to six years in prison for his part in a kneecapping, but has had two years suspended on publicly disassociating himself from an unlawful organisation.
Eamon McNamee (37) with an address at Larkfield Square in Lucan had pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm with the intent to commit an indictable offence, namely assault causing harm, at Fairgreen, Saggart, Co Dublin on January 19th, 2013.
The Special Criminal Court heard that a man called Declan Smith had been shot and wounded.
The three-judge court previously heard that the Special Detective Unit had received confidential information that there was to be unlawful IRA activity and movement around Dublin on January 18th.
An operation was undertaken and McNamee was observed driving in convoy with members of the IRA around Dublin.
Mr Smith was taken to Ballymana Lane, Kiltipper later that day to be interrogated concerning allegations of criminality. The court heard that this operation concerned the restructuring of the IRA in Dublin following the death of a senior IRA commander.
Parties including McNamee stayed at Ballymana Lane for two hours. They then travelled to Fairgreen, Saggart, Co Dublin where Mr Smith was shot.
Mr Smith was wearing a white boiler suit and his hands were tied. A local, who was a paramedic, attended to Mr Smith and observed that he had been shot in the left leg. He described it as a knee cap.
Mr Smith was brought to Tallaght hospital and a bullet was recovered from him. He was not willing to assist in the investigation at the time and has since died in an unrelated event.
A number of cars, including McNamee’s, were seen leaving the scene and he was later arrested. He was interviewed by gardaí on a number of occasions but remained silent. He refused to account for firearms residue found on him. It was found to be similar to the residue found on Mr Smith’s boiler suit.
The court heard McNamee had previously been jailed for five years for the sale and supply of drugs.
Before sentencing on Tuesday, McNamee’s barrister, Lorcan Staines BL, called him to the witness box.
Dressed in a black polo shirt and jeans, he took the oath before giving a “disassociation” in open court.
He was asked if he would give an undertaking from this day forth that he would not associate with members of any unlawful organisation.
“I do indeed,” he replied.
Ms Justice Isobel Kennedy, presiding, with Judge Gerard Griffin and Judge Gerard Haughton, noted that that the accused was responsible for bringing the injured party to the scene, where he suffered a serious injury, a kneecapping.
Although there was evidence of firearms residue, she said the possibility could not be excluded that the accused was standing within a metre of the person who discharged the firearm.
In mitigation, she noted that he had been described as a family man, who had two young children, and had worked as a roofer with his father.
She took into account his guilty plea, although she said that it was not an early plea.
“He has given an undertaking before the court to disassociate from previous associates and an unlawful organisation,” she said. “That does not happen frequently before these courts.”
She also took into consideration garda evidence that he was the lowest member in the chain of command and was ordered to be present at the scene.
She assessed his crime as meriting a sentence of eight years and six months, but reduced it to six years on taking mitigating factors into consideration.
“In light of the undertaking given this morning, we will suspend the final two years,” she said.
He entered a €1,000 bond to keep the peace for five years from the date of his release and comply with the undertaking in perpetude.
He then waved at family members before being led away to begin his sentence.