Thursday 14 December 2017

Assault charges against rugby star to stay 'on books'

Paul Higgins

IRELAND rugby international Stephen Ferris was yesterday bound over to keep the peace in relation to charges of assaulting two men.

The 25-year-old Ulster, Ireland and Lions flanker appeared in Belfast Crown Court yesterday, charged with assaulting two men, allegedly causing actual bodily harm to Colm Conlon and common assault on James McGinley on September 27, 2009.

His brother David Ferris (28) who shares the same address at Chestnut Hall Avenue in Moira, Co Armagh, admits causing Mr Conlon actual bodily harm on the same date.

Stephen Ferris agreed to "be bound over and keep the peace and not to be involved in public disorder" for a year in the sum of £500 (€597).

Liam McCollum, defending, said the rugby international was "obviously very sorry for what happened that night".

Peter Magill, prosecuting, asked for those charges to be "left on the books", an application granted by Judge Tom Burgess.

In granting the binding order, Judge Burgess said it was a "sensible way forward" as having read the papers it was clear to him that David Ferris "instigated everything that happened".

The judge also set next Thursday for sentencing of David Ferris.

Stephen Ferris is currently part of the Ireland squad competing in the RBS Six Nations and was at the centre of controversy last week when a last-minute tackle was penalised, costing Ireland the match against Wales.

He was yellow carded for the supposed spear tackle on Wales lock Ian Evans and was cited, but a disciplinary panel later cleared him to play in the aborted match against France.

Irish Independent

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