Dundons fail to overturn threat to kill convictions

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Wayne and John Dundon
Dundons, Wayne and John, failed in their bids to overturn threat to kill convictions

WAYNE and John Dundon, who are serving life sentences for separate murders, have failed to overturn convictions for threatening to kill members of a family that was previously associated with them.

In 2012, Wayne Dundon (37) of Lenihan Avenue was found guilty of issuing thretening Alice Collins that he would kill or cause serious harm to her son Gareth and husband Jimmy Collins at Hyde Avenue, Limerick on September 30, 2010. He was also convicted of intimidating Alice Collins and her daughter April during the course of the investigation.

The non-jury three judge Special Criminal Court court jailed him for six years.

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His brother John (33), of Hyde Road, Limerick was also found guilty of threatening to kill April Collins at Hyde Road on the weekend of April 3 and 4, 2011 and was jailed for five and half years.

Earlier this week, the Court of Appeal dismissed the cases taken by the Dundon brothers on all grounds and affirmed their convictions.

Mr Justice George Birmingham said that the court was being asked to form a different view on the facts as from the view that the trial judges formed.

The Court of Appeal was “not prepared to do that,” he said.

There was evidence that supported Wayne Dundon’s conviction and the Court of Appeal was not in a position to intervene.

Mr Justice Birmingham, who sat with Mr Justice Alan Mahon and Mr Justice John Edwards, commented that Wayne Dundon’s lawyers tended to “dip in and out of the transcripts of a trial at will”.

The court said that there was tensions between members of the Dundon and Collins families and that this formed the background to the trial.

In John Dundon’s case, the injured party was April Collins, a woman who had been in a relationship with John and Wayne’s brother Ger since she was about 15 and together they had three children.

In April 2010, Ms Collins ended her relationship with Ger Dundon.

Difficulties arose over whether she would bring the three children to visit their father, Ger, while he was in prison.

April Collins told the trial that John Dundon banged on her door and said “I know you are in there you tramp. I want to see my nephews. When I get you, I am going to kill you”.

John Dundon’s lawyers said that they were seeking an acquittal on the basis of an unreliable identification of their client.

Mr Justice Birmingham said that the experienced trial judges had heard all these points as well as the cross-examination of April Collins.

During the trial, certain telephone transcripts were excluded and others had restrictions imposed on their use. Mr Justice Birmingham said that this was entirely justified.

During Wayne Dundon’s trial for the murder of Roy Collins, CCTV footage was used covering movements in and around 31, Hyde Avenue in 2009. It was argued that CCTV footage could be obtained for the relevant period in 2010 but the cameras were not functioning at that time.

Counsel for Wayne Dundon, Michael Bowman SC sought to introduce certain material from prisoner phone transcripts disclosed during the same murder trial but this was also dismissed.

Mr Bowman argued that the evidence given by April Collins in the murder trial was not relied upon and therefore her evidence against Wayne Dundon in the threats and intimidation case made the conviction unsafe. This was refused by the court of Appeal.

The Dundons made no reaction when the judgment was delivered and returned to custody to serve their sentences.

Wayne Dundon is also currently serving a life sentence for the murder of businessman Roy Collins in Limerick, on April 9, 2009.

John Dundon is serving a life sentence for the murder of Shane Geoghegan who was shot in a case of mistaken identity on November 9, 2008.