Belfast Telegraph

Rage case judge tells of hate mail

One of Ireland's leading criminal court judges has received hate mail over a road rage sentence.

Gardai are examining letters posted to Mr Justice Paul Carney, who presides in the Central Criminal Court in Dublin.

The judge revealed he had been sent a menacing letter as he jailed Dublin man Karl Donohoe for 12 years for the manslaughter of British motorist Raymond Bates in September 2010.

"This is the second road rage homicide I have had to deal with in a very short space of time," Mr Justice Carney told a packed courtroom.

"These cases outrage the community in a way that no other does. I know this from the signed, addressed, stamped hate mail which I received after the last case. Because of its menacing nature I have handed this correspondence to An Garda Siochana."

It is understood the mail relates to a six-year prison sentence given to Dublin mother Claire Nolan.

The 25-year-old admitted manslaughter when she crushed father-of-four Michael Duffy, 66, against his son's house with her car on January 26, 2008.

The judge said she was out of control on drink and drugs when she carried out an assault with a car.

Mr Justice Carney warned that in both cases he was dealing with the lesser homicide charge of manslaughter.

"I have not and I am not dealing with a case of murder like my correspondence called it," he added. "The DPP accepted a plea of manslaughter which is a wholly different crime capable of carrying a suspended sentence."

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