Boat theft claims to be dropped against duo charged over alleged drunken chase along Liffey
BOAT theft claims are to be dropped in the case of two men charged over an alleged drunken chase along the River Liffey however a judge has refused to throw out other connected charges.
Emergency services were alerted to an incident at about 6am on June 1 when a boat was taken from its mooring at a south Dublin bank sailing club.
Following a pursuit on the Liffey, a boat was brought to a halt and later two Dublin men were arrested.
Brian Stacey, 44, of Derry Drive, Crumlin and Ronan Stephens, 40, from Captain’s Road also in Crumlin face seven charges under the Maritime Safety Act, the Theft and Fraud Act and the Public Order Act in connection with the alleged incident.
They appeared at Dublin District Court on June 1 and were granted bail providing they did not take part in any boating activities on the Liffey unless with the approval in writing of gardai and the Dublin harbour master.
They were charged with being under influence of alcohol and failing to stop for gardai at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club while being the operator of a boat, theft of a pleasure craft worth €11,000, navigating the craft without due care and attention and endangerment of a RNLI lifeboat crew at the Shipping Lane on the River Liffey, trespassing at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club and breach of the peace.
The pair appeared again at the district court today when Judge Bryan Smyth was told gardai were seeking for an eight-week adjournment to get directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
At an earlier stage, solicitor Michael Kelleher, for Mr Stacey, said he intended to write to the DPP because his client is the owner of the boat and has a receipt.
Today he asked for a strike out while solicitor Amanda Connolly representing the co-defendant also asked the judge to note that the matter has been going on since June 1 last.
Garda Paul Moody said today that he believed the boat theft charges would be dropped. He asked for further time for directions from the DPP to be obtained and explained that there had been a delay because he had been off-duty as a result of an injury.
Judge Smyth refused to grant a defence request for a strike it out but ordered that the DPP’s direction must be available when the case resumes in January.
The court has removed a bail condition banning Mr Stacey from the Liffey without getting permission from gardai and the harbour master.
At the first hearing on June 1, Garda Paul Moody said Mr Stacey “made no reply” when he was charged. He said the incident began in the early hours of that morning and was on-going when he took up duty at 7am. Mr Stacey was arrested at 8.25 am at Poolbeg Yacht and Boat Club.
Garda Moody said it was alleged the incident happened at the Shipping Lane of the River Liffey at the East Link Bridge coming into Dublin city.
At the same hearing, Garda Patrick Collins had told the court that the co-defendant Ronan Stephens also “made no reply” after caution when he was charged. He was arrested at Sir John Rogerson’s Quay. He has been ordered not to partake in boating activities on the Liffey without the prior consent, in writing, of the harbour master and gardai at Irishtown station.