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A prosecutor has told the jury in the trial of a Dubliner, who shot a man in the head and chest, that if ever there was a case of murder, this was it.
Dominic McGinn SC was giving his closing speech to the Central Criminal Court on Tuesday in the trial of 33-year-old Seán Ducque, who is charged with murdering a man in Dublin City in 2014.
The father-of-one, of no fixed abode, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Kieran Farrelly on October 26th, 2014 at Killarney Court, Killarney Street.
However, he admits firing two shots from a shotgun, which killed the 33-year-old.
Mr McGinn told the jury that, if someone used a shotgun at close range like the accused did, one could presume he intended to kill. That was logical and reasonable, he said.
Regarding the defence of provocation, which can reduce murder to manslaughter, he said that whatever was said by the deceased had to cause the accused to totally lose control.
He noted the words Mr Ducque said the deceased had used: “I’ll beat the head off you.”
“How could that lead anyone to that complete loss of control?” he asked. “What he said amounts to being cross, flying into a rage. That’s not provocation.”
He said that the accused was in complete control, doing what he intended. “He shot him and, as he collapsed pleading for his life, he was able to reload and go within a metre of his head and fire a second shot. That blows the defence of provocation out of the water.”
He concluded that the accused had lured Mr Farrelly to Killarney Court in order for him to be attacked, recovered the gun there and used it deliberately. “That shows his intention,” he said. “If there ever was a clear case of murder, this is it.”
Hugh O’Keeffe SC addressed the jury on behalf of the accused. He said his client had killed Mr Farrelly; he had shot him twice and would be punished for it.
He said that provocation was a very unusual defence, that it would make the jury think because it was completely subjective.
“It’s what he would have done, not you,” he said, explaining that the jury would have to consider his client’s temperament, character and circumstances.
He indicated that intoxication was not a defence, but noted that his client was a homeless drug addict and said the jurors would have to try to put themselves in his position.
“He had taken heroin, alcohol and sleeping tablets that day,” he said. “Is it the way he would have reacted?”