Belfast Telegraph

Kevin Lunney: QIH director speaks of torture for the first time

Kevin LOunney speaks of his ordeal for the first time
Kevin LOunney speaks of his ordeal for the first time
Lauren Harte

By Lauren Harte

Fermanagh businessman Kevin Lunney has revealed how he tried to escape from his captors on the night he was abducted and tortured before being dumped on a roadside over the border in Co Cavan.

The father-of-six was left with life-changing injuries after being bundled into the boot of a car outside his Derrylin home on September 17 and subjected to several hours of brutal attack.

Speaking publicly for the first time in an exclusive interview for BBC Spotlight to be screened later tonight, Mr Lunney (50) reflects on the harrowing events of seven weeks ago.

Sporting a beard to cover slash injuries to his face and neck, he recalled coming home from work as normal on that fateful Tuesday evening.

“I came up the lane as usual, didn’t notice or suspect anything, looking forward to seeing the kids,” he said. 

“Then I noticed about two-thirds of the way up the lane a white car just ahead.

“I knew it was unusual because there wouldn’t normally be a strange car on my lane.

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“The next thing I was aware of was that they had put the car into reverse at high speed.

“The car was basically jumping on the road as hard as they could drive it backwards, reversing towards me.

“Almost instantly it smashed into me and I could see the front of the jeep crumpling.

“I could see two guys jumping out, the next thing was the two side windows came in.

“They dragged me out and then there was a third person with Stanley knife and I could feel it up to my neck.

“Basically he was saying, ‘Get into that’. I didn’t know what he meant, I was still resisting a little bit and he said, ‘If you don’t get into that we are going to kill you’.”

Kevin Lunney

Mr Lunney was forced into the boot of a black Audi with the perpetrators torching his own car and the vehicle they had used to ram it.

He says he made an attempt to escape by opening the boot from inside.

“I went to jump but I hadn’t realised that the third guy inside the car had taken the seats down so he had come into the boot on his belly and had caught my right foot.

“I went to jump and he caught me by the right foot, so I kind of fell back into the boot,” he said.

The gang took Mr Lunney to a farmyard where they poured industrial bleach over him and his wounds in an apparent effort to destroy any of their own DNA that might have attached itself to him.

He also had one of his legs broken in two places below the knee and the letters QIH carved into his chest.

The attack on Mr Lunney followed a sustained campaign of attacks on Quinn management by elements who wish to see former owner Sean Quinn return to the company.

Mr Quinn has repeatedly denied any involvement in the threats and repeatedly condemned the ongoing intimidation and act of violence against Mr Lunney.

Earlier today QIH executives met with the Garda Commissioner Drew Harris in the wake of Mr Lunney’s attack and torture.

In a statement, the firm said while “progress is being made” in the investigation into their colleague's abduction, its directors and their families “continue to live in fear”. 

A spokesperson said: “The community and staff of QIH need to see positive action now to give them the confidence to speak out against those perpetrating this campaign of intimidation.

“The directors of QIH, the staff and the community are putting their trust in the police services and authorities on this island but they need to see the perpetrators and more importantly the paymaster brought to justice in the short term.

“We noted to the Commissioner our concerns that prior to the most recent attack on Kevin, appropriate resources and attention were not applied to addressing the multitude of acts of intimidation and violence against QIH directors and staff.

“We also expressed our concern that failure to bring the orchestrator and paymaster of this campaign to justice would leave this peaceful community in a limbo status of fear and paralysis that would undermine the local economy and the rule of law and order in this region.

“We called for robust policing of the region and for the urgent establishment of a dedicated special cross-border, highly resourced task force, to deliver for this region what was achieved in respect of directed criminal activity elsewhere.”

The full Spotlight interview with Mr Lunney will be screened on BBC One on Tuesday at 10.45.

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