Man given suspended sentence for harassing Quinn Executive

A KINAWLEY man has been given a suspended sentence for harassing Mannok director Kevin Lunney by putting up posters in his local area.

Sean McGovern (53) was found guilty of harassing Mr Lunney at Enniskillen Magistrates Court on Monday.

McGovern was found not guilty of harassing two other directors of the company formerly known as Quinn Industrial Holdings, Liam McCaffrey and Tony Lunney, and of harassing Kevin Lunney’s wife Bronagh Lunney.

During a hearing before Christmas, the prosecution put forward its case that two sets of posters had been put up in the Derrylin and Kinawley areas between October 30 and December 20, 2020.

One of the posters was reported to list the names of the four alleged victims, while the other posters featured an image of McGovern’s son Bernard with the word “victimised” written on it. During this time Bernard McGovern was being prosecuted in the South for an assault on Kevin Lunney in Ballyconnelly in February 2019.

Mannok CEO Mr McCaffrey spoke of a long running campaign of intimidation on social media and a more direct physical campaign in person against directors of Mannok, which was previously known as Quinn Industrial Holdings. He also noted the posters appeared just after the one year anniversary of the much publicised kidnapping and assault of his colleague Kevin Lunney in September 2019, which three Dublin men were recently convicted of carrying out.

Mr McCaffrey said he felt they were intimidating. He said he also felt the naming of himself and others on one of the posters was an escalation of a poster campaign that had been ongoing since 2016.

In his evidence on the stand, Mr Kevin Lunney said the appearance of the posters in question near his workplace and near his home had made him feel intimidated.



CONTINUED FROM FRONT PAGEMr Lunney supplied dashcam footage to the court showing a man on a ladder wearing black putting a poster of Bernard McGovern on a telegraph pole near his place of work in Derrylin. McGovern later admitted this was him.

When the trial resumed at the court on Monday this week, the defence successfully argued that the charges of harassment regarding Tony Lunney, Liam McCaffrey and Bronagh Lunney should be dismissed as there was no evidence before the court that McGovern had any involvement in putting up the second set of posters, which named them individually.

Defence barrister Barry McKenna said it had been McGovern’s feeling that his son was being victimised, and said that he had stated by whom on the posters.

In the witness box, McGovern said he put up the posters of his son as he and his wife were concerned he was being victimised. At the time, boxer Bernard McGovern had been remanded in custody in the South for a serious assault on Kevin Lunney, which he would later be convicted of.

The prosecution put it to McGovern that he had put up the posters in areas where he knew Mr Lunney would see him, such as beside his place of work and beside his home. 

In response McGovern asked “why would it affect him” and said he had put the posters up on roads where he believed commuters travelling in and out of Fermanagh would see them.

It was pointed out one of a Bernard McGovern poster was put up on the lane to Mr Lunney’s house. McGovern denied having anything to do with that poster.

When it was put to McGovern that he had put the posters up to intimidate and harass Mr Lunney he said “the McGovern’s do not intimidate, we treat people with respect”, adding “but we also need to get it.”

The prosecution said there had been “a very big history” behind the case, while Judge Keown referred to the fact Mr Lunney and other Mannok directors had faced assaults and intimidation.

Summing up, Mr McKenna said there was “an issue of free speech” in the case, and said posters were regularly put up across the North “on a wide variety of topics that incite emotions in many.”

Judge Keown said it was “clear and obvious” McGovern had harassed Mr Lunney, and said he had no hesitation in convicting him.

McGovern was sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for three years.

Judge Keown also issued a three year restraining order preventing McGovern from contact with Kevin Lunney, Bronagh Lunney, Tony Lunney and Liam McCaffrey.


The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 28 Belmore Street, Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, BT74 6AA