A bloke who dragged his dead uncle's body to the post office in the hope of collecting his pension payment has been given the "benefit of the doubt" by his family.
Declan Haughey attempted to claim his uncle Peadar Doyle’s £211 pension payment on January 21, 2022 after a confrontation with the post office worker.
On Friday (July 28), Haughey walked free from prison, just one week after being sentenced to two years in jail with six months suspended.
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Belfast Live reports the 41-year-old was released due to time already served and remission, and it is believed he is being taken back into the fold by his extended family.
Carlow Circuit Criminal Court heard last week how Haughney, who has 55 previous convictions, and his pal Gareth Coakley dragged Peadar Doyle to Hosey's post office.
But they were spotted by onlookers who confronted the pair on the street, where Haughney said of the pensioner: "He’s grand."
Garda Joe O’Keeffe told the court it "all kicked off" when Haughney – who had tried earlier that day to get Mr Doyle’s pension – told the shocked post office teller: "He’s dead now and it’s your fault. If you had paid me he wouldn’t be here."
The incident resulted in police being called and the 66-year-old was declared dead at his home in Carlow, Ireland.
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The State did not make the case that Mr Doyle was dead in the house, and the State could not say when he had died.
It was accepted by Coakley’s defence it was likely Mr Doyle was dead "or at the very least he’s incapacitated" when he entered the post office.
But speaking out after the trial, members of Mr Doyle’s family have said they believe Peadar was alive when he was brought from his house to the post office on January 21 last year – as one said they are willing to give Haughney the 'benefit of the doubt' over his condition.
The late pensioner’s niece, who did not want to be named, told the Carlow Nationalist: "As unhappy and hurt as we are, we are not in a position to condemn him [Declan] for taking him [Peadar] out of the house dead. There is absolutely no evidence that he did that. There is no evidence to call him a liar."
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