'HARDY Bucks' actor Martin Maloney has pleaded not guilty to attacking two bouncers following a row about a queue, while he was making an appearance at a popular pub.
The 30-year-old, from Bollingbrook Drive, Swinford, Co Mayo made his third appearance at Dublin District Court yesterday to face three assault charges and succeeded in getting one struck out.
He is to contest the remaining, more serious assault allegations and was remanded on continuing bail - a date for his district court trial has yet to be fixed.
He faces two counts under Section 3 of the Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act for assault causing harm to Brian Smith and Mark O'Shaughnessy, at The Big Tree pub, on October 9, 2012.
Mountjoy Garda Eamon Honan told Judge Patricia McNamara yesterday that Mr Maloney had been making a public appearance at The Big Tree in Drumcondra, Dublin, when he became involved in an altercation with one of the security staff over the one-way queuing system at the toilets.
It was alleged that he got Mr Smith in a headlock and held him on the ground.
Gda Honan said that Mr Smith had a previous injury which was exacerbated but has since "settled".
The court also heard that it would be claimed that the actor was then escorted by security staff to a fire exit and taken outside. Gda Honan said it would be alleged the actor then struck the second complainant Mr O'Shaughnessy.
Judge McNamara was told that Mr O'Shaughnessy suffered dental injuries: four teeth needed fillings and one required root canal treatment, which all cost between €700 and €1,000.
After hearing the outline of the prosecution evidence, and reading statements and medical reports, Judge McNamara decided not to send the case forward to the Circuit Court, which has tougher sentencing powers.
She said he was still presumed innocent and accepted jurisdiction to deal with the prosecution at district court level.
The judge adjourned the case until next week for mention when the entertainer's trial date will be set.
Defence solicitor Tony Collier told Judge McNamara that a hearing date was required, meaning his client is contesting the charges.
It is expected that there will be up to eight prosecution witnesses; Mr Collier also said there is a "significant amount of CCTV" footage and it is expected that the District Court trial will take a full day to hear.
During his second appearance at Dublin District Court, the judge agreed to grant free legal aid to Mr Maloney who had filled out a statement of his means showing that he did not have a weekly income in excess of €250. He had also given the garda a copy of his bank statements.
The court heard that when he was arrested the entertainer was in possession of €1,500 which his lawyer explained was payment for earlier work. Mr Maloney also told the judge that some of the cash “was belonging to a few people as well”.
Mr Collier said his client is “an actor, in an impecunious position at this time”, adding that the entertainer does not have steady work and unable to fund legal fees.
Maloney became famous for playing the role of Eddie Durkan in the hit mock documentary programme which was set in a west of Ireland town and followed the antics of five down on their luck young men.
The cult comedy started out as “webisodes” broadcast online but was later picked up by RTE and the cast also went on to star in the feature film titled The Hardy Bucks Movie which this year became a box office hit in Irish cinemas.
The actor returned to TV screens in September when he appeared in Celebrity Apprentice but the funny-man had a short run and became the first contestant to leave the reality show.