A former Dublin City Councillor who water-boarded a conman in his garage on the Navan Road has been jailed for 12 years, while his father has been jailed for 8 years.
Jonathan Dowdall and his father Patrick admitted falsely imprisoning the man at their home at Navan Road in January 2015. They also admitted threatening to kill the same man at that address on the same date.
The Judge described the ordeal as "truly terrifying" which "no words can convey".
In March 2016, Jonathan Dowdall's Dublin home was searched by Gardaí in relation to another matter. A USB stick was found in his kitchen.
Gardaí found a number of videos on it and they were shown to the three judges today.
The first was dated Jan 12th 2015 and showed a man trying on some leather motorbike gear beside Jonathan Dowdall.
The second video showed the same man bound to a swivel chair with white cable ties. Jonathan Dowdall is seen placing a tea towel over his head and pours two large buckets of water over him.
A third clip shows the victim promising Jonathan he’ll leave Dublin.
The man, a convicted fraudster called Alex Hurley, told Gardaí he went to Jonathan’s house to check out a BMW motorbike. After being invited back three days later, he said he was pushed into the chair in his garage and left there for some time.
He said Jonathan, who was wearing a balaclava, tortured him and accused him of being a thief. He said he couldn’t breathe and thought he was being drowned during the water boarding.
He said he threatened to feed him to some dogs and said he’d chop him up and burn his head at the stake if he didn't tell the truth. He called him stupid to mess with the head of the IRA and told him he was a good friend of Gerry Adams and Mary Lou McDonald.
Mr. Hurley told Gardaí Jonathan’s 60-year-old father Patrick pulled out a silver pliers and threatened to cut his fingers off one by one. The court heard the ordeal lasted for three hours before he was released.
Jonathan Dowdall used to be a Sinn Féin Councillor on Dublin City Council.
His barrister said he became angry when he saw posts on Facebook from people claiming to have been scammed by Mr. Hurley, who pretended he was a barrister and repeatedly asked for Mr. Dowdall’s bank details after viewing the motorbike.