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Sentence for Blackmail of Well-Known Priest Delayed

Irish Independent, 2 June 2006

A MAN who was due to be sentenced after being found guilty of blackmailing a well-known priest had his case adjourned yesterday until October 13.

Ross Donovan (29), King Street, Dungarvan, Co Waterford, was found guilty by Judge Michael O'Shea at Waterford Circuit Criminal Court last January of blackmailing Father Michael Kennedy. Donovan pleaded not guilty to the blackmail charge, saying he thought his brother James sold drugs to the priest. The court previously heard James Donovan demanded €800 to pay a drug baron or he would say the priest sexually assaulted him.

The priest refused to hand over any money and contacted gardai who lay in wait for the two. The brothers fled in a green Rover car and were chased by gardai for more than 28 miles.