A Dundalk man has been sentenced to ten years in prison for what the Central Criminal Court had been told was a random act of extreme violence.

Angelo O'Riordan, 23, from Point Road, Bellurgan, Co Louth, had been charged with the murder of Aidan Myers at Upper Faughart on 13 December 2006 but pleaded guilty to manslaughter during his trial.

He also pleaded guilty to assaulting Gearoid O'Donnell on the same occasion.

The court had been told that two cars were hijacked by a group of young men in Dundalk on the evening before the killing.

The gang was armed with a machete and the first driver was slashed with it, leaving him needing 45 stitches.

In the second car, a woman and young child were forced out of their car by the gang wielding the machete.

37-year-old Aidan Myers had been collected from his sister's home in Upper Faughart by his friend, Gearoid O'Donnell.

They were driving towards the town when they were rammed from behind and their car forced into the ditch.

When they got out to find out what was going on, they were attacked with a machete. They ended up on the ground, being hit by the machete.

Mr Myers was still on the ground when O'Riordan got into a car, pushing the other car over him.

Det Garda Charlie Geoghegan told the court that a friend to whom O'Riordan had confessed said he could hear Mr Myers screaming under the car as he kept driving.

Mr Myers later died of his injuries.

Mr O'Donnell later died of natural causes although his family believe his death was hastened by the injuries he received in the attack.

The court was told that the defendant had consumed alcohol, cocaine, cannabis and other drugs on the night in question.

He had a list of previous convictions including dangerous driving and reckless endangerment.

Today Judge Patrick McCarthy said the details of the case were quite shocking.

He sentenced O'Riordan to ten years in prison and suspended the last year.

He also backdated the sentence to May of last year when the defendant was arrested on this matter.