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3 years for Dublin man who attacked rival’s neck with machete

A criminal who lacerated a rival’s neck and chest with a machete in “broad daylight” near a Garda station has been handed a three year jail sentence.

Martin Cunningham, 27, pleaded guilty in November of 2021 to taking out a machete while assaulting Kenneth Fitzsimmons, 44, in Finglas.

The attack took place in April fo 2019. Gardaí produced evidence last week at a sentence hearing that the victim was left with deep lacerations to his arms, legs, neck and cuts on his torso so deep that his ribs were exposed.

He ultimately required four litres of blood as he was given emergency treatment, and subsequent surgery.

The victim told Gardaí that when the attacker saw him, he said something to the effect of “Kenneth, I’m going to chop you up,” at which point the victim was knocked to the ground and repeatedly slashed with the machete.

“He swung at me wildly, like a mad man,” claimed Fitzsimmons, recounting the incident.

“I could see it in his eyes. I think he was coked out of it.”

The attack was captured on CCTV and presented in court.

Cunningham has also been convicted for driving without insurance, possession of drugs, assault and making threats while in custody.

While he was originally charged with attempted murder for the incident, the Director of Public Prosecutions decided to drop that particular charge after the perpetrator pleaded guilty to producing a machete and assault causing harm.

For the offences in question, the maximum sentence is 5 years. Justice Eileen Creedon said that she believed the perpetrator was at risk of re-offending.

However, she said that after Cunningham’s statements of remorse and early guilty plea, she would reduce the sentence to four years. Then she agreed to suspend the final 12 months after his release, with conditions.

The incident is the latest in a recent pattern of machete attacks across Dublin.

Man attacked with “machete-like weapon” in west Dublin

Amid the ongoing crime wave, Ireland has seen a noticeable rise in unusual weapons being used, such as one woman who was murdered in her Blanchardstown home using a samurai sword in 2020.

Additionally, in 2020, there was an acid attack against a number of teens in Waterford which left them disfigured.

In March of this year, an apparent acid attack in Cork left two brothers severely injured and potentially on the verge of losing their sight.

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