A KILKENNY father of four has been sentenced to five years in prison for bringing a stolen shotgun to Waterford, as part of an ongoing Traveller feud in the city.
Mark O’ Grady (38), from Hebron Park in Kilkenny City, had pleaded not guilty to possession of the stolen Bereta sawn-off shotgun in Waterford on August 16, 2008. He was found guilty of the offence after a trial, and was given a five-year prison sentence, with the final two years suspended.
Giving evidence, Detective Sergeant Anthony Petitt said that he had received information that a firearm was being brought to Waterford to be used as part of nan ongoing feud in the city between two Traveller families. Gardai stopped and searched the car in which Mr O’ Grady was travelling, and recovered the weapon, which was in three parts and wrapped in plastic.
The shotgun had been stolen from a van in Cavan earlier in the year. Gardai said that Mr O’ Grady was not involved in the theft.
Michael O’Connor BL, who was defending Mr O’ Grady, said his client was not a member of either family involved in the feud. However, a mobile phone was also discovered on Mr O’ Grady, which revealed that he had made a significant level contact with two phone numbers linked to two people actively involved in the feud.
Judge Desmond Hogan said that but for the quick action of gardai, the gun could have been used with devastating consequences.