Friday 17 November 2017

Bailed man's 'daft' holiday plan flies in face of democracy – judge

Gordon Deegan

A JUDGE dashed an accused man's plans for a sun break in Spain while on bail and legal aid, stating that the idea was "daft".

At Ennis District Court yesterday, Judge Patrick Durcan refused to vary the bail conditions for Bernie Mongans (26) to allow him fly to Malaga for a sun break between March 7 and March 11.

Tara Godfrey, solicitor for Mr Mongans, of Dun na hInse/ Leirin an Bhreadain, Ennis, applied to vary the conditions, stating that the man's family lived in the local area.

However, Insp John O'Sullivan said that gardai were opposing the application to vary bail terms for the man to travel abroad due to the nature of the charge before the court.

Mr Mongans is charged with causing €13,580 in criminal damage on June 29, 2012.

Judge Durcan said: "The allegation is criminal damage to the value of €13,580. This is a matter where the DPP has recommended trial on indictment by virtue of the seriousness of the allegations.

He added: "Your client applied for legal aid and was granted legal aid – and it seems to be flying completely in the face of anything that is reasonable in our democracy that someone who is before the courts in respect of a serious allegation, who has sought legal aid, now wants to go to Malaga."

Refusing the application, Judge Durcan said: "There is an element of daftness to this application, and I know you are acting on instructions Ms Godfrey, and a degree of reality has to come into this."

Irish Independent

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