Sunday 17 November 2019

Boy B now expected to appeal his conviction for murder

Judge said Boy B had shown some degree of shame and regret (stock photo)
Judge said Boy B had shown some degree of shame and regret (stock photo)
Eimear Cotter

Eimear Cotter

A boy found guilty of murdering schoolgirl Ana Kriegel is expected to appeal his conviction.

Yesterday, Mr Justice Paul McDermott imposed a 15-year sentence on Boy B, with a review to take place after eight years.

The Irish Independent understands that, irrespective of the sentence handed down yesterday, the teenager's legal team intend to appeal the conviction.

Boy B's lawyer Damien Colgan SC asked the judge to extend free legal aid for an appeal.

Boy B continues to maintain his innocence, the court previously heard.

Last week, Mr Colgan said his client did not accept the verdict of the jury.

Boy B, who is now 15 years old, was found guilty in June of the murder of Ana Kriegel at an abandoned farmhouse in Lucan on May 14, 2018.

The teenager, who was just 13 at the time of the killing, had denied the offence.

Following conviction, Boy B was remanded in custody to Oberstown Detention Centre, and the judge ordered a number of psychological and psychiatric reports to assist him in sentencing.

Yesterday, Judge McDermott said Ana's murder was of the "most serious, disturbing and shocking type".

He said Boy B, and his co-accused Boy A, bore responsibility for Ana's murder. Notwithstanding their age, they were responsible for her death and must accept the consequences.

In sentencing the boys, he said any sentence must be proportionate and take into account the gravity of the crimes and the circumstances and age of the offenders.

He said the court must have particular regard to the prospect of rehabilitation, saying the boys were still very young and they may mature and develop into very different people as they grow older.

In relation to Boy B, the judge said he was a very intelligent boy who had enjoyed a normal upbringing, and whose parents were hard-working and law-abiding people.

He said Boy B's parents placed a high value on education, and Boy B had been home schooled before the trial.

He said Boy B's family had suffered social isolation due to the trial, as well as negative comments on social media.

This was "unfair and wrong" and should stop immediately, Judge McDermott said.

The judge said he believed the cases of Boy A and Boy B were significantly different.

He said there was no forensic evidence against Boy B, nor was there ever any suggestion that he had assaulted Ana.

The judge said Boy B had limited insight into what he had done - and shown some degree of shame and regret.

However, in the immediate aftermath of Ana's murder, Boy B did nothing, he did not take any steps to assist Ana nor did he seek any help.

Instead, he left the scene, the judge said.

Boy B was a very intelligent youth, the medical reports found, and he did not have a mental disorder.

He had suffered from two panic attacks, one which occurred during the trial, but he was able to manage his anxiety, the psychological and psychiatric reports found.

Boy B told the doctors he felt guilty and blamed himself for Ana's death and he "thought about it most nights".

Judge McDermott imposed a 15-year sentence on Boy B, with a review after eight years.

The judge said the boys will both have to carry the guilt and shame of their involvement in Ana's death for the rest of their lives.

However, he said that once the sentences were served the boys would have the opportunity to reconstruct their lives in a positive way.

If the conviction is not appealed, Boy B will be at least 23 years old before he is due for release.

Irish Independent

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