Mur­der ac­cused had been ‘out for re­venge’

BRAZIL­IAN MAN IS ON TRIAL FOR THE MUR­DER OF CLON­ROCHE MAN JA­SON (JAY) BANVILLE

Enniscorthy Guardian - - FRONT PAGE -

THE TRIAL of man ac­cused of mur­der­ing a Clon­roche man in last Oc­to­ber has heard that the de­fen­dant was ‘out for re­venge’ when he al­legedly stabbed the de­ceased and his friend.

Ju­raci Da Silva (36), orig­i­nally from Brazil, with an ad­dress at Park Lane, Water­ford, pleaded not guilty to mur­der but guilty to the man­slaugh­ter of dad-of-three James Banville (28) at New Street, Water­ford, on Oc­to­ber 8, 2016. His plea was not ac­cepted by the State and he is on trial at the Cen­tral Crim­i­nal Court. He also pleaded not guilty to as­sault caus­ing harm to Tagh­mon man Conor Ho­gan and not guilty to a third count.

DAY ONE

A Brazil­ian man was out for re­venge when he stabbed an­other man to death af­ter be­ing as­saulted in the early hours of the morn­ing, a pros­e­cu­tion bar­ris­ter told a mur­der trial jury last Tues­day.

Ju­raci Da Silva (36), with an ad­dress at Park Lane in Water­ford pleaded not guilty to mur­der but guilty to the man­slaugh­ter of 28-year-old James Banville at New Street in Water­ford on Oc­to­ber 8, 2016. His plea was not ac­cepted by the State and he is on trial at the Cen­tral Crim­i­nal Court.

He also pleaded not guilty to as­sault caus­ing harm to Tagh­mon man Conor Ho­gan and he pleaded not guilty to a third count of pro­duc­ing a knife. All charges re­late to the same lo­ca­tion and date.

Open­ing the trial, John O’Kelly SC for the pros­e­cu­tion told the jury they would see CCTV footage show­ing that Mr Banville and Mr Ho­gan twice as­saulted the ac­cused over a 20 minute pe­riod but then left him and walked away. Af­ter a lit­tle hes­i­ta­tion, he said, Mr Da Silva fol­lowed the two men, pro­duced a long knife and in­flicted the fatal in­jury on Mr Banville. He said Mr Ho­gan was also in­jured but re­cov­ered fully.

Coun­sel said it was about 2.55 a.m. when the first as­sault on the ac­cused hap­pened. The city cen­tre was busy. The pubs and night­clubs had closed and peo­ple were wan­der­ing around, get­ting food or head­ing home. Bar work­ers, hav­ing fin­ished their shifts, were on the street.

Mr Da Silva first met the de­ceased and Conor Ho­gan on John’s Lane, where he talked to them be­fore they as­saulted him. Mr Da Silva then went to his nearby home and changed his clothes, reemerg­ing af­ter a short time wear­ing a red jacket. Less than 20 min­utes af­ter the first as­sault Mr Da Silva is seen on CCTV talk­ing to two women when Mr Ho­gan and Mr Banville walked by, saw Mr Da Silva, and as­saulted him again.

Mr O’Kelly said th­ese as­saults do not re­flect ‘any credit’ on Mr Ho­gan or Mr Banville, but they then left the area and walked to an ad­join­ing street.

Mr Da Silva ran af­ter them, pro­duced a knife, and the third and fatal con­fronta­tion took place at New Street at about 3.15 a.m.

Mr O’Kelly said that if a per­son is as­saulted they are en­ti­tled to de­fend them­selves but not to seek re­venge.

‘That is what hap­pened here,’ he said, adding that in a civilised so­ci­ety vic­tims of as­sault go to the gar­dai.

Coun­sel said the jury might feel anger or even out­rage over the first two as­saults but that hurt feel­ings can­not jus­tify such a ‘ter­ri­ble re­venge’.

He added: ‘When he fol­lowed them in to New Street and pro­duced a knife that wasn’t self de­fence, they weren’t at­tack­ing him. They had gone away in to the next street so any­thing he did at that stage could never amount to self de­fence.’

Mr O’Kelly fur­ther ex­plained to the jury that for an un­law­ful death to be mur­der, the ac­cused per­son must have in­tended to kill or cause se­ri­ous in­jury. He added that the only pos­si­ble in­tent when a per­son stabs some­one in the chest is at least to cause ‘very se­ri­ous in­jury’.

At the be­gin­ning of the trial Col­man Cody SC for the de­fence told the jury that it is ac­cepted that Mr Da Silva in­flicted the wound that led to the death of Mr Banville and that he used the knife found near the scene.

The jury saw CCTV footage of the move­ments of the three men in the build up to the fatal knife at­tack.

DAY TWO

An al­leged vic­tim of an as­sault in which his friend died de­scribed the lead-up to the fatal stab­bing.

Conor Ho­gan from Tagh­mon told pros­e­cu­tion coun­sel John O’Kelly SC that he was out with his friend James Banville cel­e­brat­ing his first week in a new job on Oc­to­ber 8, 2016. He de­scribed how they drank in a few pubs and twice as­saulted Brazil­ian na­tional Ju­raci Da Silva on the streets of Water­ford City be­fore Mr Da Silva ran af­ter them and stabbed them, leav­ing Mr Ho­gan need­ing stitches and Mr Banville dead from his in­juries.

Tak­ing the stand Mr Ho­gan said he met James Banville at about 5 p.m. in Wex­ford, went to a friend’s house nearby and then drove to Water­ford City, ar­riv­ing at about 10 p.m. They went to some pubs in the city cen­tre, in­clud­ing Sin­nott’s and Ma­son’s. Later on he said he met Mr Da Silva in an al­ley­way iden­ti­fied in court as Cross Lane.

The wit­ness told coun­sel: ‘He wouldn’t go away. He kept on com­ing over and we told him to go away and he wouldn’t so we hit him. Me and J (Mr Banville) hit him.’

Mr Ho­gan said he and Mr Banville then went to a pub but he couldn’t re­mem­ber if they were able to get in. They then de­cided to re­turn to the car, which was parked on New­gate Street to the north of the city cen­tre. On their way they met Mr Da Silva again at the steps of the Park Lane Apart­ments where Mr Ho­gan said he as­saulted Mr Da Silva again. Mr Banville and Mr Ho­gan then walked on to­wards the car but as they walked along New Street he heard the ac­cused ‘shout­ing and scream­ing’ and run­ning to­wards them.

He said: ‘He ran at me and stabbed me and then he ran at J and he stabbed J.’

At first he didn’t re­alise that Mr Da Silva had a knife but then Mr Banville col­lapsed.

Mr Ho­gan re­quired about ten stitches.

The jury also saw CCTV footage show­ing the move­ments of Mr Banville and Mr Ho­gan and the ac­cused man on the night. De­tec­tive Sergeant Michael Caw­ley told de­fence coun­sel Cephas Power BL that the two as­saults on Mr Da Silva were caught on CCTV but the fatal in­ci­dent took place in an area not cov­ered by cam­eras.

DAY THREE

The al­leged vic­tim of an as­sault in which his best friend was stabbed to death has de­nied racially abus­ing the Brazil­ian ac­cused, who is now on trial for mur­der.

Conor Ho­gan ad­mit­ted twice as­sault­ing Ju­raci Da Silva be­fore the Brazil­ian al­legedly stabbed him and his friend James Banville, but de­nied a third as­sault and said he couldn’t re­mem­ber telling Mr Da Silva to ‘go back to your own coun­try’.

Dur­ing cross ex­am­i­na­tion last Thurs­day de­fence coun­sel Col­man Cody SC said a num­ber of peo­ple wit­nessed the first as­sault on Mr Da Silva in an al­ley­way in Water­ford City cen­tre, known lo­cally as Cross Lanes. He said one of those wit­nesses would say that they heard Mr Banville or Mr Ho­gan say: ‘We are done with you now, go back to your own coun­try.’ An­other wit­ness would say that he heard some­one say: ‘What do you think you are do­ing here. This is our coun­try.’

Mr Ho­gan said he could not re­call say­ing any­thing like that and told Mr Cody that the rea­son he and Mr Banville as­saulted the ac­cused was be­cause he ‘got in our faces’ and wouldn’t go away when told. He said the colour of his skin didn’t mat­ter.

Mr Cody asked: ‘Is it pos­si­ble you said those kind of things to Mr Da Silva?’ and the wit­ness replied: ‘no’.

Mr Cody then asked if he would deny it if some­one ac­cused him

The late Ja­son (Jay) Banville.

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