Pair jailed for life over Kerry bog murder

Brazilian man Bruno Lemes de Sousa was stabbed repeatedly

A Brazilian man and an Irish man have been found guilty of the murder of a 28-year-old Brazilian man who had been living in Gort Co. Galway and whose body was found floating in a bog in north Kerry in March 2012.

The trial which had gone into its third week at the Central Criminal Court in Tralee heard how Bruno Lemes de Sousa had been violently attacked. He had been stabbed repeatedly – some 64 times - and had been struck also with a blunt instrument.

It was not possible to say whether one or two knives were used State Pathologist Dr Margot Bolster said.

The court also heard how he had been attacked first in a house in Ballyduff and had brought from an attic in a house with his hands tied.

John Paul Cawley (20) and Wenio Rodriguez Da Silva, (29), both of Ardoughter, Ballyduff, Co Kerry, had pleaded not guilty to murdering Bruno Lemes de Sousa, between February 16th and March 10th last year at Shroneowen Bog, Tullamore, Listowel.

The jury of nine men and three men took just one hour and thirty two minutes to return unanimous guilty verdicts. Mandatory life sentences have been imposed on both men.

Cawley, originally from Tipperary and Da Silva from Brazil, who traded in second hand cars, had been living in north Kerry with some months before the murder.

Da Silva told gardaí de Sousa had been sent to kill his partner and children because of a debt of €5,000 euro which he (Da Silva) owed to people in Brazil.

“He ( Bruno) said he was supposed to kill me,” Da Silva told gardaí during interviews on March 11th and 12th 2012.

Maintaining de Sousa had been paid to kill him Da Silva told gardaí: “People kill in Brazil for €100”.

He told the gardaí he had struck de Sousa in the laundry of the house with a wheel brace, but denied he had killed him. He said it was his co-accused who had stabbed de Sousa.

Sandra Cawley, a sister of John Paul Cawley and former partner of Da Silva, told the trial that de Sousa and Da Silva had a conversation in Portuguese in the kitchen at the house in Ballyduff.

After some time, she said she heard a thud and a loud noise. She went out and saw John Paul, Wenio and Bruno in the laundry room. Bruno, with his hands over his head, ducked down and Wenio had a bar in his hand.

She said Bruno asked her to call the guards, while Wenio told her to get out.

She heard two more loud noises and later met the three men and her other brother, Charlie, on the stairs.

Wenio was leading Bruno by a rope and he had his hands tied together.

Later, Wenio asked Sandra for her phone and when he returned it she saw two pictures of Bruno on it. His hands and legs were tied together.

Gardaí who visited the dormer house at Ardoughter in Ballyduff found blood marks on a Stira ladder and on timber beside the light switch in the attic.

A knife was recovered from a river near Ballyduff.

When arrested John Paul Cawley said he felt sick and he told gardaí “I killed him”. Later he said he had meant to say “we killed him”.

Mr Justice Garrett Sheehan thanked the jury for performing thier public voluntary service and said if any wished to be excused from further jury service they could be.

He refused leave to appeal.