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Murphy had nothing to do with farming, appeal court told

Murphy had nothing to do with farming, appeal court told

A barrister representing local republican Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy has told the Court of Appeal his client had nothing to do with cattle farming.

Murphy is appealing against conviction for evading tax on profits from a farming business.

The 67-year-old, whose farm at Ballybinaby, Hackballscross, Co Louth, straddles the border with Northern Ireland, had pleaded not guilty at the non-jury Special Criminal Court to nine charges of failing to comply with tax laws in the for the years 1996/97 to 2004.

The three-judge Special Criminal Court found Murphy guilty on all counts and he was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment on 26th February last.

Murphy’s barrister, John Kearney QC, told the Court of Appeal yesterday that his client’s brother, Patrick Murphy, was in control of the farm from before 1991 until the present time and that the authorities went after Thomas Murphy for tax his brother Patrick had already paid.

Mr Kearney said documents on the movement of cattle lead to a position, which could not be disproved, that Patrick Murphy was in charge of “all this”.

He was the “man in the fields” in ongoing control. All of the documents, all of the cheques “turn up in his shed”, Mr Kearney said.

In reference to certain transactions, Mr Kearney said a witness gave evidence that Patrick Murphy “probably” forged or filled in the body of these documents.

Mr Kearney said a reasonable inference could be drawn from the documents that Thomas Murphy had nothing to do with cattle farming and Patrick Murphy used his name.

In relation to the banking evidence, the Prosecution’s position was “follow the money”, Mr Kearney said.

Read the full story on RTÉ.ie here.

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