Jury to continue deliberations tomorrow in trial of man accused of murder at Pete Taylor gym

Gerard Cervi (36) also accused of attempted murder of well-known boxing coach

A jury will continue their deliberations tomorrow in the trial of a 36-year-old man accused of murdering an early morning gym-goer and the attempted murder of well-known coach Pete Taylor and another man at Bray Boxing Club.

The jury panel of six men and six women has so far spent one hour and 47 minutes considering their verdicts, having been sent out to commence their deliberations at 2.13pm today.

Addressing the jury at 4pm, Ms Justice Karen O’Connor said she was inviting them to stop their deliberations for the evening and return to the Central Criminal Court tomorrow on Thursday at 10.30am to resume.

She added: “You are now at the stage where you are carrying out your deliberations so it is most important you don’t discuss the matter and don’t engage in social media in any way in connection with the trial”.


Ms Justice Karen O’Connor concluded her charge to the jurors last Friday in the Central Criminal Court trial of Gerard Cervi, who denies that he was the gunman who fired nine shots into a crowded gym, killing Robert ‘Bobby’ Messett and injuring Mr Taylor and a third man, Ian Britton.

In his closing speech last week, Paul Murray, for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), took the jury through CCTV footage that he said showed Mr Cervi travelling from his home to Bray Boxing Club and back home on the morning of the shooting. Counsel submitted that the CCTV evidence was sufficient to convict but when added to the presence of Mr Cervi’s DNA and fingerprints in a Volkswagen Caddy van that the prosecution alleges was used by the gunman, it leads to the “inevitable” conclusion that Mr Cervi is guilty.

Defence counsel Hugh Hartnett, for Mr Cervi, submitted in his closing statement that alleged lies told by a garda under oath may point to a “malaise” and possible “corner cutting” in the investigation of the shooting at the boxing club.

The garda, counsel submitted, had made eight statements relating to the case and swore on oath that those statements were “all of his own making and knowledge”. The garda accepted “two years down the road”, Mr Hartnett said, that he had been advised to say certain things by a sergeant. That sergeant, counsel said, then had a “lack of recollection” in relation to those matters.

Mr Hartnett told the jury of six men and six women that his client had no motive for the attack, no background in crime and there was not an “iota” of evidence to identify him as the gunman.

Mr Cervi (36) from the East Wall area in Dublin 3, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Robert ‘Bobby’ Messett at Bray Boxing Club, Bray Harbour, Co Wicklow on June 5th, 2018. Mr Cervi also pleaded not guilty to the attempted murders of Mr Taylor and Ian Britton on the same date and at the same location.

The trial has heard that a group of people had assembled at the boxing club in the early hours for a training session when a gunman appeared at the door and opened fire. Mr Taylor and Mr Britton were injured while Mr Messett died immediately at the scene.

Before sending the 12 jurors out to begin their deliberations this afternoon, Ms Justice O’Connor asked them to consider each count separately and said it was open to them to acquit or convict the accused on all or any of the counts. She asked them to be unanimous in their verdicts.

The jurors were sent out to commence their deliberations at 2.13pm today.