Tuesday 22 January 2019

Boy (13) on Ana Kriegel murder charge is held for a week before next court appearance

Judge stresses reporting restrictions essential for fair trial and issues social media warning

Anastasia 'Ana' Kreigel
Photo: Austin Crowe
Anastasia 'Ana' Kreigel Photo: Austin Crowe

Alan O'Keeffe

The 13-year-old boy charged with the murder of schoolgirl Ana Kriegel is expected to remain in custody at Oberstown Detention Centre until his next court appearance this Friday.

He was sent to the detention centre in County Dublin last Friday evening after he appeared before Dublin's Children's Court on a charge of murdering the 14-year-old schoolgirl on May 14 at Glenwood House, Clonee Road, Lucan, Dublin.

The boy could not be remanded in custody for longer than a week because it was his first court appearance.

Ana's funeral is expected to take place in the next few days but no details of the arrangements had been published by yesterday.

Ana lived with her family at Newtown Park in Leixlip, County Kildare.

A close friend of the Kriegel family, Catherine Murphy TD, said: "Ana's family are very appreciative of the solidarity that has been expressed by people.

"They have continued to ask for privacy but they are very aware of the high level of support they have been getting. It really matters to them.

"The feeling of sadness which has covered the whole area has not lifted," Ms Murphy said.

Books of condolence will remain open at Leixlip library and Lucan library until tomorrow evening, she said.

A book of condolence was also opened at the Council Building in Tallaght.

The 13-year-old boy charged with Ana's murder, who cannot be named because of his age, was accompanied to the special sitting of the Children's Court by his parents and his grandfather.

It is alleged that he murdered Ana on the day she was reported missing by her parents. Three days later, after an intensive search, her body was discovered at the derelict property where she was allegedly murdered.

The door and windows of the abandoned house have since been sealed with cement blocks.

The boy spoke briefly during the private hearing that lasted less than 10 minutes.

When asked by Judge John O'Connor if this was his first time in court, the accused nodded and replied: "Yeah."

Detective Inspector Mark O'Neill of Lucan garda station told Judge O'Connor the details of the boy's arrest, charge and caution.

He said he arrested the boy at 4.01pm on Friday at Clondalkin garda station and was present when he was charged by Sergeant Maeve Ward.

"His father was present when he was charged," he said.

The boy, wearing a black jumper, blue jeans and black running shoes, made no reply when the charge of murder was put to him.

Judge O'Connor said he did not have jurisdiction to grant bail due to the nature of the charge.

He remanded the boy in custody to appear again this Friday.

The judge stressed that reporting restrictions were essential for a fair trial.

He warned that he wanted to make it clear that if the boy's name, school or address was published, or a picture of him was reproduced it would result in a prosecution.

The judge cited reporting restrictions in juvenile cases, saying: "No report shall be published or included in a broadcast which reveals the name, address or school of any child concerned in the proceedings or includes any particulars likely to lead to the identification of any child concerned in the proceedings, and no picture shall be published or included in a broadcast as being or including a picture of any child concerned in the proceedings or which is likely to lead to his or her identification."

Three reporters were present in the tiny courtroom for the hearing while other journalists had to wait outside.

The judge said he was aware the journalists present understood this and added: "I am doing this from the point of view of general social media."

Legal aid was granted after the judge noted from defence counsel Donagh Molloy that the boy was "a schoolchild, 13 years of age".

A second juvenile who was arrested last Thursday morning in relation to the investigation, was released without charge last Friday. A file will be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

A GoFundMe page has been opened on social media for Ana's family.

Sunday Independent

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