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Dublin: 13°C Thursday 23 September 2021

Three remanded in custody over "animalistic" nail-gun attack

The court heard that two nails had to be surgically removed from the victim’s feet.

File image of a nail-gun.
File image of a nail-gun.
Image: Shutterstock/fotomak

THREE MEN ACCUSED of “crucifying” a man at a house in Limerick city have been remanded in continuing custody after appearing in court today.

All three accused men appeared before Limerick District Court charged with the false imprisonment of Dan Quilligan, a Rathkeale based member of the Travelling community.

The three accused are also charged with assaulting him, causing harm to Mr Quilligan.

The offences are alleged to have occurred at a house at Larch Court, Kennedy Park, Limerick, on 14 September 2015.

Three solicitors, representing the three men, consented to each man being remanded in custody for a two-week period.

Sergeant John Moloney of Henry Street garda station, prosecuting, told the court the State was “awaiting directions” from the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.


During an earlier bail application hearing on behalf of the three men, gardaí alleged Mr Quilligan was lured to a house in Kennedy Park and subjected to an “animalistic” attack.

Gardaí alleged two nails had to be surgically removed from the victim’s feet after he later managed to escape from the house.

Ger Mackin (33), with an address at Star Court, John Carew Park, Limerick; Mark Heffernan (32), Swallow Drive, John Carew Park, Limerick; and Patrick Hayes (52) of Larch Court, Kennedy Park, Limerick, are alleged to have been involved in the shocking attack.

Gardaí alleged that after arriving at the house Mr Quilligan (52) was threatened and set upon by three men dressed in white protective “forensic” style boiler suits.

During the contested bail hearing, Detective Garda David Bourke claimed the alleged assailants told Mr Quilligan they were members of the IRA, and threatened him with a nail gun.

The court heard the gun was normally used for driving nails into timber.


Detective Garda Bourke further alleged the assailants asked Mr Quilligan if he would “like it in the eye or the head”.

The court heard that a nail was shot through each of Mr Quilligan’s feet, and that the two nails were later surgically removed in hospital.

Detective Garda Bourke said it was an extremely violent attack, “almost animalistic in nature, to effectively crucify him”.

It was also alleged the men demanded €15,000 from Mr Quilligan.

Judge Marian O’Leary, who has refused to grant the three men bail, remanded each of the accused in continuing custody to appear before the district court again, via video-link, and for DPP directions, on 14 June.

Comments have been disabled as court action is ongoing. 

Read: Fearing retribution, communities are suffering and turning on each other

Read: Man receives serious injury to his fingers in attack in Waterford 

About the author:

David Raleigh

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