NewsCrime Desk

Cannibal killer to sue HSE and psychiatrist

Saverio Bellante
Saverio Bellante

A MAN who stabbed his Dublin landlord to death before eating part of his lung has launched a medical negligence case against the HSE and a psychiatrist involved in his treatment prior to the killing.

Saverio Bellante (37) is currently under the care of the Central Mental Hospital after being found not guilty by reason of insanity for the killing of Tom O’Gorman (39) at his address in Castleknock in January 2014.

It has also emerged that Mr O’Gorman siblings have lodged a similar legal action against the HSE and the same psychiatrist, as well as naming Bellante in their case also.

Bellante lodged a medical negligence claim against the HSE and the named doctor, although several medical professionals were involved in his care before he killed Mr O’Gorman in Castleknock, north Dublin in January 2014.

Bellante, and Tom O’Gorman’s siblings Catherine and Paul, could stand to be awarded six-figure sums in compensation if their cases are successful.

Both sets of legal proceedings were lodged to the High Court last Friday, just days before the two year statute of limitations was up.

Yesterday marked the second anniversary of Bellante’s attack on Mr O’Gorman where he stabbed him in the living room of the house in Beech Park Avenue.

Bellante, who was renting a room in the house owned by Mr O’Gorman, told gardai he had stabbed him during a chess game.

Palermo born Mr Bellante’s trial heard that he had been taking anti-psychotic medication ever since he had a breakdown in Italy in 2005 which led him to believe he was Jesus Christ.

But was taken off the medication by a doctor on January 9, 2014 - three days before the horrific attack on Mr O’Gorman early on January 12.

His trial heard that he had been acting strangely within a day of stopping his pills.

Bellante’s family in Italy became concerned for his health and his sister Loredana had several conversations with him before the killing.

In July last year, he was acquitted of Mr O’Gorman’s murder on the grounds of insanity but was ordered to be detained at the Central Mental Hospital (CMH).

Because he was found not guilty of murder due to insanity he will not have a criminal record if or when he is discharged from the CMH, which some sources say could be as early as four years away.

A spokesman for the HSE told the Herald that such legal claims are handled by the State Claims Agency, and as such it has not yet been informed that such any claim has been made.

But a courts source confirmed the claims had been lodged.

Bellante, who is from Sicily, has been locked up ever since he carried out the attack in Mr O’Gorman’s home with a knife and a dumbell.

The jury in his trial heard that the Italian man admitted killing Mr O’Gorman and told gardai in an interview that he ate what he believed to be a part of his victim’s heart.

Two consultant psychiatrists told the trial jury that Bellante fulfilled the criteria for a special verdict of not guilty by reason of insanity.

Dr Stephen Monks said in evidence to the court that Mr Bellante told him he decided to take the knife and kill Mr O’Gorman and then decided to eat his heart as the way to good and evil was through that.

“I thought to cook it would be too crazy, so I ate it raw,” he had told Dr Monks. It was later discovered that what Bellante had eaten was part of Mr O’Gorman’s lung.