Jury considers deliberations

Padraig Conlon 01 Mar 2023

By Eimear Dodd

A jury is continuing its deliberations in the trial of a former financial services manager accused of being part of an alleged conspiracy to defraud investors in Custom House Capital over a decade ago.

Ciara Kelleher (51) of Blackhorse Ave, Dublin 7, has pleaded not guilty to one count of conspiring with others to defraud investors, clients, and customers of Custom House Capital (CHC) Ltd by intentionally misleading them as to where or how their assets had been placed in the investment firm.

The offences are alleged to have happened within the State on dates between October 2008 and July 2011.

Judge Orla Crowe sent the jurors in the trial home for the night after deliberating all day yesterday.

They return this morning.

The jury has been deliberating since before lunchtime last Thursday, February 23.

Reading a note handed in by the jury, Judge Crowe said the jury had asked whether no evidence of a motive is a legitimate doubt. Judge Crowe said this issue was within the scope of the jury’s decision-making, which is not an area she wished to trespass into.

She told the jury that there is a “long established difference” in law between motive and intention.

Judge Crowe said intention relates to the mental element present in a majority of crimes, including conspiracy.

She told the jury that it is not a defence to say that the motive or reason for committing a crime is worthy.

Rather, the motive may be relevant to show if an accused had a reason to commit a certain crime, but is not a defence.

It is the State’s case that Ms Kelleher was a part of a conspiracy to hide the true location of some CHC client money, by issuing valuations which were incorrect.

Ms Kelleher denies any wrongdoing.

The trial continues.

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