Cunningham found guilty of laundering bank money

 

Financial adviser Ted Cunningham (60) has been found guilty of laundering over £3 million sterling connected with the Northern Bank robbery.

A jury of seven men and five women at Cork Circuit Criminal Court today found Cunningham guilty on 10 counts of money laundering including one of possessing over £3 million between December 20th, 2004, and February 16th, 2005, at Farran and knowing or believing it represented the proceeds of the robbery at the Northern Bank cash centre.

The jury reached 11-1 verdicts on nine of the counts and a 10-2 verdict on the other charge.

Just after midday, the jury sought clarification from Judge Con Murphy relating to the margins of decisions. The judge said he would accept majority verdicts of 11-1 or 10-2, and the jury returned with its decision ten minutes later at 12.20pm.

Ciaran O’Loughlin SC, for Mr Cunningham, sought to have sentencing adjourned, and the judge agreed to defer sentencing until April 24th. However, in light of the seriousness of the convictions, Judge Murphy remanded Mr Cunningham in custody.

In all, the jury heard evidence from some 75 prosecution witnesses and two defence witnesses while they were also given access to some 65 exhibits produced in the case which began on January 14th and is now in its tenth week.

In light of their service on the long case, Judge Murphy exempted the jurors from further jury duty for life.

Last night, Judge Con Murphy told the jury he was sending them home for the evening and he asked them to gather again at 10.30am today at the courthouse in Washington Street, Cork to resume their deliberations.

The judge, who spent over 11 hours summing up the case, told the jury they had to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt on each charge if they are to convict Mr Cunningham.

“Approach this issue as dispassionately as you can. This is the people of Ireland against Mr Cunningham, not the Northern Bank against Mr Cunningham or the gardaí against Mr Cunningham. I require from you a unanimous verdict on each of the 10 charges.”

In reply to a question from the jury on money laundering, Judge Murphy said that in order to convict Mr Cunningham they had to be convinced beyond reasonable doubt that he possessed or used the money at issue and that he knew or believed it to be stolen.