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Thursday 18 September 2014

Man found guilty of attacking man at Christmas karaoke party

JESSICA MAGEE AND DECLAN BRENNAN

Published 28/03/2014 | 07:46

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A man has been found guilty of punching a Polish man while he sang karaoke at his Christmas work party.

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Charles Dillon (33) of Tara Hill Crescent, Rathfarnham, had pleaded not guilty to assault causing harm to Polish national Piotr Kozub (59) at the Castle Inn Pub in Rathfarnham village on December 13, 2008.

Judge Desmond Hogan remanded him on continuing bail until May when he will be sentenced.

Mr Kozub told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that he had just begun singing a well-known Christmas song when a man came up behind him and hit him in the face.

He said he fell on the ground, the man jumped on him and continued to beat him.

He said he was bleeding a lot from the nose and mouth, his face was swollen and he couldn't see out of one eye.

After going home, Mr Kozub was still bleeding and vomiting, so called an ambulance and went to hospital where he was given an x-ray and injections.

Speaking through a Polish interpreter, Mr Kozub said he had been out at a Christmas party with his friends. He said the group went out after work at 8pm and that the incident happened at around midnight.

Under cross-examination by Kieran Kelly BL, defending, Mr Kozub denied that he had been drunk or aggressive leading up to the alleged assault.

"I had three or four beers over the evening, I am not a drinker.

"I'm not an aggressive person and I have never been aggressive in my life," he said.

Mr Kozub rejected claims put to him by Mr Kelly that he had gone upstairs to a private function in the pub and demanded food.

He also denied being asked to leave or being escorted downstairs and said he had walked downstairs with the manageress after she told him food was not served upstairs.

He further rejected an allegation that he had confronted the man running the karaoke and aggressively demanded to sing.

Mr Kozub said the organiser handed him the microphone, encouraged him to sing and was helping him to do so.

He dismissed a claim that someone had taken the microphone from him and that he had followed them, stuck his fingers in their chest and said "I'll kill you, Irish bastard."

Garda Donal Ashe said Mr Kozub gave a statement to gardai the following day and his injuries were photographed.

He described Mr Kozub as being "clearly very shaken", with very visible injuries including black eyes, a broken tooth and a swollen face.

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