Cartel footsoldier in Hutch plot studying criminology in jail
Ciaran O’Driscoll has been studying criminology in prison
September 14 2020 02:30 AM
A Kinahan cartel “footsoldier” who was jailed for his part in the failed plot to kill Patrick ‘Patsy’ Hutch has been given extra prison time for a separate threat to burn out a garda’s car.
Ciaran O’Driscoll (25) was waiting for a case in a Dublin courtroom in 2019 when he squared up to a garda and made the threat, saying it was a “f**king promise”.
At the time, he had not yet been charged over his part in the Hutch murder plot, but has since been jailed for five years after admitting acting as a “lookout” for the crime.
Last week, Judge John Hughes gave him a consecutive four-month sentence for his courtroom outburst.
O’Driscoll, of Avondale House, North Cumberland Street, Dublin 1, was charged with threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour and threatening to cause criminal damage.
The offences happened at a sitting of Dublin District Court in the Criminal Courts of Justice on November 7, 2019.
He pleaded guilty, but his defence said he denied the “specific” threat.
Garda Cathal Keon told Dublin District Court he spoke to the accused at 12.03pm on the day to tell him what an upcoming case was about when O’Driscoll said “see that threat, it’s an effing promise”.
The court heard O’Driscoll had 90 previous convictions for offences, including possession of drugs, assault and robbery.
He was sentenced to five years in jail on June 29 for conspiracy to commit a crime – the Hutch murder plot.
Defence barrister Eoghan Weldon said the courtroom incident happened against a backdrop of addiction and instability in the accused’s life.
It was at a time when he was waiting for a contested case to be called and “tensions were heightened”. O’Driscoll had recently lost his mother at the time and was “in the throes of quite a severe drug addiction”.
There was now a change in his life while he was in custody; he had successfully rehabilitated himself, was engaging in education and studying criminology, which was giving him a greater insight into his own behaviour, Mr Weldon said.
“He wasn’t in the right frame of mind when this happened.
“He wants to deal with it and put everything that happened behind him,” Mr Weldon said.
“He wants to come out of custody a new man.”
The garda repeated the nature of the threat and told Judge Hughes it referred to his own personal car.
Mr Weldon said his client’s instructions were that this was not what was said and O’Driscoll was “not accepting that that specific threat was made”.
Judge Hughes said the accused may have been stressed at the time but courts by their nature were stressful places.
He said the offences had happened in “the place where justice is administered”.
He made the four months consecutive on the criminal damage threat charge.
O’Driscoll was jailed for five years at the Special Criminal Court in June for his part in the plot to kill Patsy Hutch, older brother of Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch, in 2018.
Co-accused Stephen Curtis (32) was sentenced to five years, while Michael Burns (43) was given a nine-year sentence.
O’Driscoll had agreed to act as a lookout to watch Mr Hutch’s house and signal a hit-team when he emerged.
Mr Justice Tony Hunt said the Kinahan cartel was a cynical criminal organisation.
Another four men have also been jailed for their part in the plot.