Nine years for attack

A 45-YEAR-OLD Dundalk man has been sentenced to nine years in prison at the circuit court in Castlebar for an attack on a couple in Achill, Co Mayo.

A 45-YEAR-OLD Dundalk man has been sentenced to nine years in prison at the circuit court in Castlebar for an attack on a couple in Achill, Co Mayo.

Michael McMahon of Ashlawn, The Loakers, Blackrock pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to Sean Lavelle and to the imprisonment of him and his wife Emer, at their home in Tower Road, Dooagh, Achill on February 14, 2010.

The court heard how the couple arrived home to find two masked men with nail bars in their home on Valentine’s Day 2010, at around 8.30pm.

They were tied up and Mr Lavelle was beaten on the back, shins and hands. The men were later arrested and identified as brothers, Michael and Seamus McMahon.

Seamus McMahon was shot dead in Dundalk a month after the incident in Achill.

Counsel for Michael McMahon told the court that his client had a history of addiction and depression and was truly sorry for what he had done to the Lavelles.

As a gesture of restitution and remorse, McMahon offered e5,000 up front to the family and a further e15,000 in the near future.

However, the Lavelles refused the offer of money and said they did not believe the late admission of mistaken identity.

Judge Anthony Hunt said the facts of this case were sinister and disturbing and whether or not it was a case of mistaken identity, the invasion, the violence and the false imprisonment was pre-meditated.

He said the minds of the Lavelles were still not at rest even after this legal process had been gone through.