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Why was Dundon allowed wear headphones during today's judgement?

John Dundon listened to rap music throughout today’s ruling. Many have been asking why the judges allowed him to do so.

Image: eldeeem via Flickr/Creative Commons

CAREER CRIMINAL JOHN Dundon was today convicted of the 2008 murder of Shane Geoghegan, with the three judge Special Criminal Court handing down the mandatory life sentence.

But Dundon’s reaction in court as 23 pages of the judgement was read out raised eyebrows: the 30-year-old sat with his head down, listening to rap music on a personal CD player.

Reporters put the question to his solicitor John Devane in the wake of the ruling, with the lawyer stating that Dundon had worn them as “he didn’t want to hear the judgement, which he felt was going to be a tissue of lies against him”.

He didn’t want to overreact to any adverse outcome, and if wearing headphones achieved that for him then that’s okay.

(Solicitor John Devane speaks to the media. Photocall Ireland)

Though it may seem unusual that he wasn’t told to remove the headset, one legal expert contacted by TheJournal.ie said he suspected it was likely the judges simply didn’t want to give Dundon the opportunity to engage in any more stunts or delay tactics:

There’s nothing in the rules of the court to cover the wearing of headphones. It’s at the judges’ absolute discretion.

My suspicion is they didn’t say anything about it as they didn’t want to give Dundon any more excuses to act out.

The defendant is supposed to conduct himself in an appropriate manner, but there’s nothing written anywhere to define that, so it’s always the judge’s call to make.

Dundon’s trial has been beset with delays and headline-grabbing stunts. He was taken to hospital after suffering head injuries in his cell earlier this year. He also engaged in a hunger strike, and turned up for a court appearance back in June wearing only a pair of shorts.

Read: John Dundon found guilty of the murder of Shane Geoghegan >

Detail: Dundon sat listening to headphones as he was convicted of murder >

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