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Locked up Jim Mansfield Jnr sentenced to two years in jail for perverting the course of justice

Six months of the sentence will be suspended.

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Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court following a previous hearing (Niall Carson/PA)

Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court following a previous hearing (Niall Carson/PA)

Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court following a previous hearing (Niall Carson/PA)

Disgraced businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr was sentenced to two years imprisonment at the Special Criminal Court today for perverting the course of justice relating to the kidnap of a former employee by terrorists Dessie O’Hare, Declan ‘Whacker’ Duffy and a gang of their heavies.

Six months of the sentence will be suspended.

The entire Mansfield family were in court for the verdict including his brothers Tony and PJ, ex-wife Donna Cosgrave, son Samuel and daughter Ingrid along with their partners.

Mansfield’s secretary Sally Anne Browne who got a special dispensation to attend the court during the trial was also there as the sentence was read out.

Mansfield had been found not guilty of the kidnap but guilty of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice relating to an order he made for the destruction of CCTV which captured him meeting employee Martin Byrne prior to the terrifying ordeal.

Byrne was signed into the Witness Protection Programme following the kidnap and gave evidence during Mansfield’s trial which painted a picture of chaos within the family home and businesses after the empire went under owing more than €200 million to the banks.

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Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court (Niall Carson/PA)

Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court (Niall Carson/PA)

Businessman Jim Mansfield Jnr leaving Dublin’s Central Criminal Court (Niall Carson/PA)

Mansfield, a Celtic tiger playboy whose family were once the richest in Ireland, was described as having a ‘mild’ intellectual disability and a carer to his elderly mother Anne, 78, who he has lived with at the family mansion Tasaggart House in Saggart.

Looking pale, the one-time heir to the multimillion-euro Mansfield fortune has spent three weeks in custody awaiting sentence since the guilty verdict last month.

In the dock at the Special Criminal Court, he wore a smart suit but had visibly lost weight since his incarceration behind bars.

Mansfield was an early school leaver, the court heard, and a psychological report submitted by his legal team cited him in the lower range of intellectual ability with difficulties in day-to-day life.

However, the court was told he was a ‘person of high standing’ in his community, had once gone to the rescue of golfer Christy O’Connor Snr when he was involved in an accident and lived alone with his elderly mother who he cared for.

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Although separated he has an amicable relationship with ex-wife Donna Cosgrave and is supported by both children Samuel, 27- and 26-year-old Ingrid Mansfield, the court heard.

Over the course of his trial evidence was heard of how the Mansfield empire lay in tatters after the economic crash and as Jim Mansfield Snr fought a battle with a terminal illness, he and his son attempted to come up with business plans to claw back some of their assets.

In his evidence Byrne claimed that those plans went awry and a number of high-profile members of paramilitary organisations were brought in to protect Mansfield from debtors and were involved to help get back the assets.

Named during the court proceedings were a who'd who of dissidents and criminals including convicted fraudster James O’Gorman, known as The Fat Man, who, it was claimed, was living in a converted stable on the family property, Real IRA thug Nathan Kinsella who, it was claimed, was in and out constantly and used Tasaggart House like his ‘place of business.’

Byrne claimed that following an assault O’Gorman moved an INLA mob in to help Jimmy Jnr get back land and a hotel from former business partners of his fathers who had agreed to buy them from the receivers and sign them back to ‘Junior’ when the time was right.

One of two men named in court as part of the INLA ‘security’ was Tallaght man Gareth Byrne – a convicted terrorist known as Red Gar.

The court also heard claims that Jimmy Mansfield Jnr had previously hired representatives of the New IRA as he was under threat from the Wall traveller group and another outfit described as ‘the Kavanaghs’.

It was also alleged that at one point he paid the Real IRA €2,500 a week in protection money.

Jimmy Mansfield Jnr denied he had any role in the kidnap of Byrne in June 2015 and the court agreed finding him not guilty. But a damning judgement issued by the court headed by Justice Alexander Owens ruled that he knowingly involved O’Hare and Duffy in his attempts to recover assets lost in the 2008 crash.

Mr Justice Alexander Owens, in giving his judgement, also said Mansfield had lied to Gardaí when he said he did not arrange the meeting with O’Hare and Duffy which ended up with Byrne being kidnapped in June 2015.

O’Hare was jailed for seven years in 2019 for falsely imprisoning Byrne while Duffy got a six-year sentence in 2018 for the same offence.

Five other men have also been convicted in relation to the assault and kidnap of Byrne who described the ordeal in court as "the day that changed my family's life and my life forever."

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