Alan Graham’s family home, located at Davin Gardens, Caherdavin, Limerick, was gutted in a fire last Monday, January 18th, in an alleged arson attack not linked to the attempted hit in Dublin.
Mr Graham, (49), is currently in custody in Dublin awaiting sentencing after he pleaded guilty before the Central Criminal Court on January 11th, to assisting others in a bid to murder Lee Boylan, 24, who was shot ten times as he sat in a car, in traffic, near Blanchardstown, on March 6, 2019.
At Limerick District Court, Wednesday, an accused named Kevin Ryan, (24), with an address at Brookville Avenue, Limerick, appeared charged with two counts of burglary to commit criminal damage by fire at the Graham family home last Monday, January 18th. According to charge sheets against Mr Ryan the present owner of the property is Kenneth Graham, a brother of Alan Graham.
Mr Ryan was also charged with two counts of damaging windows at the property on Jan 17th and 18th.
A bail hearing for Mr Ryan heard that at least one person was in the property at the time and that they sustained “minor burns”.
Detective Garda Eoin McDonagh, Mayorstone Station, said gardai went to the house on January 17th after they received a report of criminal damage and found a “smashed” front downstairs window.
Gardai were called out again to the property in the early ours of the following morning after receiving a report of an “arson”.
The detective said “curtains had been set on fire” at the house and Kevin Ryan was arrested at the scene in possession of an angle grinder.
Mr Ryan was charged at Henry Street station with possession of the angle grinder in suspicious circumstances and released on station bail. He returned to the Graham home again later that evening and set it on fire, gardai alleged.
Detective McDonagh said the front door of the property was “kicked in” and a mattress had been thrown into the front hall and set alight with firefighters.
The fire caused “in excess of €50,000 worth of damage”.
One person who was in the property at the time was not injured, this time.
Detective McDonagh said gardai anticipated “further more serous charges” may be brought against Mr Ryan arising out of the fire.
The injured party at the house identified Mr Ryan to gardai as the person who smashed windows and set fire to the house, Det McDonagh told the court.
The Garda witness claimed that, following Mr Ryan’s arrest he admitted to gardai that he had smashed windows at the house with an iron bar and a hammer; had set fire to the house; and was the owner of a “blow torch” which gardai found at the scene.
Mr Ryan “outlined his dislike for the occupants” and he stated a number of times that “he wanted to burn the house down”, Det Gda McDonagh further alleged.
Mr Ryan told gardai he had tried to “intimidate” the occupants of the house with an angle grinder, the garda said.
He said it was “worrying” that the accused had allegedly shown “no cognitive thought” or “consideration” for the occupants of the house.
Objecting to bail, Detective McDonagh said Mr Ryan “poses a serious and active risk to members of the public”.
Solicitor Sarah Ryan, no relation, representing the accused, said the accused became “dependent on alcohol” from an early age, and had attempted suicide 11 days before the alleged arson.
Ms Ryan gave the court a letter from the accused’s parents in which they asked that “certain matters be made known to the court”, including that their son had been diagnosed with depression; was “seriously unwell”; and “in need of help”.
Detective McDonagh claimed the accused told gardai “that he wanted to burn the house as he felt it wasn’t suitable for the community”.
He said Mr Ryan told gardai that he consumed alcohol and drugs on the night of the fire.
Prosecuting Sergeant Sean Moloney, Roxboro Station, asked the court “to consider the safety of the public given the Gardai’s fear the accused would commit further serous offences if granted bail”.
Judge Alan Mitchell said he did so and refused bail, remanding the accused in custody to appear before the court again on January 26th.