Laois counterfeiting trial collapses

The Dublin Special Criminal Court trial of four men arrested at the scene of an underground bunker in County Laois in 2010, after what Europol described as “a major investigation into one of the most sophisticated money counterfeiting set-ups uncovered in Europe to date”, has collapsed after the prosecution counsel entered a nolle prosequi – a decision to no longer prosecute the case.  From the BBC report

At the Special Criminal Court, the prosecution counsel entered a nolle prosequi – a decision to no longer prosecute the case.

This was accepted by the judge, Mr Justice Paul Butler.

On Wednesday the prosecution had applied to have the trial stopped and the court discharged from the case, following revelations that a deliberate decision had been taken not to disclose information regarding a fifth suspect in the case to the defence. [added emphasis]

However, the Special Criminal Court had refused the application to discharge itself from the trial.

Mr Delaney’s defence counsel had asked for a complete dismissal, but the judge said the court was satisfied the prosecution could enter a decision not to prosecute at any stage.

The RTÉ report notes

Kevin Flanagan, 43, of Borris-in-Ossory, Co Laois; Liam Delaney, 42, with addresses at Mountrath and Borris-in-Ossory; Anthony Sloan, 57, a native of Belfast with an address at Ard na Mara, Dundalk, Co Louth; and Andrew Poole, 43, of Portlaoise, had pleaded not guilty to possession of equipment, including printers and cutting machines, to manufacture counterfeit currency at Ballybrophy, Borris-in-Ossory, on 31 May 2010.

A charge of membership of an illegal organisation against Anthony Sloan was also dismissed.