Tiger kidnapping trial collapses after jury "compromised"

A member of the jury told the judge he believed some jurors were getting information from outside the court

The trial of a 35-year-old man accused of taking part in a tiger kidnapping in Drogheda has collapsed.

Jonathan Gill of Malahide Road stood trial for robbery and the false imprisonment of the family of a postal worker in 2011.

The jury had spent just under 14 hours over the past six days deliberating when a note from one of them was handed to the judge this morning.

The author said he felt a duty to inform the court of his suspicions that some jurors were getting information from outside the jury and that they were using it to make their decision – something he felt was wrong.

He said he also heard two strangers on a tram talking about the case.

Jonathan Gill had denied being one of five people who held the family of a postal worker hostage while they forced him to steal €660,000.

On learning of the note, defence barrister Dean Kelly argued the jury had been “wholly and fatally compromised.”

Judge Elma Sheahan agreed and discharged the seven men and five women of their duties.

Before she did so, the prosecutor Vincent Heneghan said there was no suggestion the jury had been “got at.”