Garryowen rugby player Shane Geoghegan was the unintended victim of a shooting that was meant for another man and was ordered by John Dundon, the Special Criminal Court has heard.

Opening the Mr Dundon’s trial for murder, barrister Tom O'Connell told the court it was the prosecution case that Shane Geoghegan was the unintended victim of a shooting.

The intended target was a man named John McNamara, who lived close by the deceased in the Limerick suburb of Clonmore.

Mr O'Connell said the court would hear from key prosecution witness April Collins, who would give evidence that John Dundon ordered another man, Barry Doyle, to kill John McNamara.

He said April Collins would tell the court that she heard Mr Dundon give Barry Doyle a description of John McNamara and say that "everything was prepared, the gun and the car."

John Dundon (30), with a last address at Hyde Road, Limerick, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of 28-year-old Shane Geoghegan at Clonmore, Kilteragh, Dooradoyle, Limerick, on 9 November 2008.

The non-jury court heard medical evidence that the head injuries suffered by Mr Dundon, which caused the adjournment of the scheduled opening of the trial earlier this week, were "superficial" and the accused presented at Beaumont hospital in a "psychogenic coma."

An application to have a new solicitor and barrister appointed for Mr Dundon, who informed the court he was illiterate was also acceded to by the court.

Prosecution opening

Mr O'Connell said April Collins will tell the court that early on the morning of the shooting, she and Gerard Dundon drove to a pub car-park to meet Barry Doyle and John Dundon, who telephoned another man to say that "John Mac" was dead.

Mr O'Connell said Ms Collins would give evidence that when John Dundon received the information that another person had been killed, he got angry with Barry Doyle, who replied: "It is him, he's big."

Counsel said the court would also hear evidence from Lisa Collins, a sister of April Collins, and Christopher McCarthy, a first cousin of the accused man.

Lisa Collins will tell the trial that John Dundon was a frequent caller to her house, and that she heard him say to Barry Doyle on many occasions "we have to do him", which was a reference to John McNamara, who had the nickname of "Pitchfork".