“He’s calm and collected … no different to how he’s been since he first arrived in the prison”
A source told the Sunday World the 59-year-old, who is being held on remand in Wheatfield Prison has displayed no outward sign of nervousness.
“He’s calm and collected … no different to how he’s been since he first arrived in the prison,” the source said.
“He doesn’t speak much – at least not to the staff anyway.
“Other inmates would have a chat with prison officers when they’re getting their food or going about the place but he doesn’t. He’s not rude but there’s no small talk.”
The source said Hutch – who is housed on the prison’s 3G landing – hasn’t asked for any medication to deal with stress ahead of the trial.
Asked about Hutch’s reaction to news that former associate Jonathan Dowdall had betrayed him and turned state’s evidence, the source said there had been none of note.
Dowdall was originally charged with Byrne’s murder alongside gang boss Gerry Hutch but this charge was dropped after he agreed to testify in the upcoming trial of Hutch and two other men.
“Just before it became common knowledge that Dowdall had turned, the OSG (Operational Support Group) carried out a major search on the landing,” he said.
“It was only afterwards that people connected it to Dowdall.”
The source also described Dowdall as a bit of a ‘narcissist.’
“Dowdall and his dad thought they were too good for prison,” he said.
“It was like they looked down on the other inmates. And Jonathan Dowdall was always complaining.
“If he hadn’t been in with the Hutch group, he’d have gotten a difficult time in prison from other inmates. But Hutch is different. He’s well protected and treated like a lord by the other inmates.
“If he is found guilty then Wheatfield is where he will stay.
“He is relatively happy where is.
“He’s in with his own and he’s safe. And safety is paramount so he won’t be moved.”
On Tuesday, Hutch will be taken under armed escort from the prison to the Special Criminal Court in Dublin to face trial for the Regency Hotel murder of 34-year-old David Byrne on February 5, of 2016.
It’s expected the trial could last up to three months.