John Gilligan, 61, the former crime kingpin who led the gang that carried out the killing of famous Irish journalist Veronica Guerin, was tracked down to a house in Dublin following his release yesterday from Portlaoise Prison.
Gilligan has previously told reporters that he had 'nothing to do with Veronica Guerin’s murder.'
Although linked to the gang that carried out the journalist's killing, Gilligan was acquitted of her murder.
Yesterday Gilligan told reporters: 'This girl, Lord have mercy on her, she never wrote one word about me.'
During his trial Gilligan confirmed that Guerin had visited him at his estate in Jessbrook in County Kildare, but he denied having assaulted her or later making any threats to harm her.
In a short interview posted to YouTube by Irish Mirror journalist Cathal McMahon yesterday Gilligan said, 'I’m after being on trial and been proved nothing’s ever happened.'
'I’m after being decent enough, respectful enough. I didn’t duck and dive — I could have come out of the prison and hid. I won’t be hiding from nobody.'
Asked about his plans for the future, he said, 'My plans are to have another beer.' That crack lead to scathing headlines that he could murder a pint.
Gilligan was acquitted of Guerin's murder despite testimony from a member of his own criminal gang, who became a state witness and later entered a witness protection program.
According to the Journal.ie Gillian was sentenced to 28 years in prison on drug trafficking charges in 2001, but his sentence was later reduced to 20 years on appeal. Since then he was entitled to further time off his sentence due to remission.
Speaking to Ireland's national radio channel RTE yesterday, Veronica's brother Jimmy Guerin said he was 'saddened that somebody who was responsible for murder – guilty of murder – is walking free from jail so early.'
'This is probably Ireland’s most notorious criminal and we are opening the gates of our prison today and letting him back into society and I think that’s wrong.'
See the Irish Mirror's interview with Gilligan here:
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