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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 17 October, 2019
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Quinn Industrial Holdings director suffered 'severe and savage' attack before being dumped on side of road

The 50-year-old man was treated in hospital for serious injuries to his face and leg.

Image: Quinn Industrial Holdings

THE BUSINESSMAN ABDUCTED in Co Fermanagh before being attacked and left on the side of a road in Co Cavan last night is suffering from “life changing” injuries, the PSNI has said.

Kevin Lunney, the director and chief operating officer of Quinn Industrial Holdings, was abducted near his home in Derrylin in Fermanagh at around 6.40pm yesterday evening.

He was taken to another location and attacked before being dumped on the side of a road hours later. His and another car were found ablaze on a road near his home.

Superintendent Clive Beatty, District Commander of the PSNI Fermanagh and Omagh district, said the 50-year-old’s car had been rammed and disabled near his home.

He locked himself in the vehicle but four masked men appeared and smashed the windows, forcibly removed him from the car and forcing him into the boot of a black Audi saloon, Beatty said.

He was driven to an unknown location “where he was removed from the vehicle and savagely beaten about the body”.

He sustained severe and brutal injuries to his legs, torso and face, the PSNI officer said.

In the wake of the attack he was bundled into another vehicle, driven to another location and dumped on the side of the road just outside Cavan, “left to fend for himself with his severe injuries”.

He was discovered by a passer-by who summoned help.

A joint PSNI and Garda operation is now under way. Officers are seeking information on a Silver BMW seen acting suspiciously in and around the Stragowna Road area of Derrylin last evening.

They are also seeking information on a black Audi saloon seen driving away from Stragowna Road at speed yesterday evening. 

Beatty described Kevin Lunney’s injuries as “severe and savage” – and said that while they were not life-threatening they were life-changing. 

The businessman had spoken to investigating officers and was assisting them with the probe “as much as he can” considering his injuries, Beatty said. 

Condemnation 

Quinn Industrial Holdings said in a statement that this attack follows prior intimidation including physical assaults and arson attacks at or near the homes or businesses of its senior staff.

Its chairman Adrian Barden said: “Kevin Lunney’s abduction and assault is an outrageous attack on a hard working father of six children but also on his 830 colleagues at QIH and the wider community in the Cavan-Fermanagh region.

For several hours last evening Kevin’s wife, family and very many friends were left to contemplate the worst.
Like many of his colleagues I am frustrated and angry that more has not been done to protect Kevin who will require some considerable time to recover from the very severe injuries sustained in this brutal attack.

Barden added he wanted police authorities to act swiftly and bring those responsible to justice. 

The attack has been met with widespread condemnation. DUP leader Arlene Foster said on Twitter that “nobody should have to live in fear of attack or indeed abduction as a result of their job”.

“I hope those responsible face the courts as a result of their actions. Thinking of the family who went through last night’s ordeal.”

Sinn Féin MP for the area Michelle Gildernew said she was disgusted by the attack. 

“This is not just a horrific attack on Kevin and his family, but on jobs and stability in Fermanagh. Anyone with information should pass it on to the authorities.”

Business Minister Heather Humphreys, the Fine Gael TD for Cavan-Monaghan, said she was horrified by the news of the attack and urged anyone with information to contact authorities. 

She described Kevin Lunney as a decent, honourable, hardworking man “who I have known for many years”.

“As a Director in the Quinn Group, he supports the employment of in excess of 700 people in the Ballyconnell area.

“This type of intimidation is despicable and needs to be eradicated from our society.

“My thoughts are with his family and friends and I wish him a full and speedy recovery.”

- With reporting by Daragh Brophy 

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