Monday 15 July 2019

Detectives launch criminal probe into 'circulation of images claiming to show boys convicted of Ana Kriegel murder'

The teenager was found dead at an abandoned farmhouse after she went missing last May (Family handout/PA)
The teenager was found dead at an abandoned farmhouse after she went missing last May (Family handout/PA)
Robin Schiller

Robin Schiller

DETECTIVES are investigating the posting of images online which claim to show the two teenagers convicted of the murder of Ana Kriegel.

Gardai in Lucan are carrying out a criminal inquiry after images were circulated across a number of social media platforms in the wake of the guilty verdicts.

Pictures alleging to show Boy A and Boy B have been posted on Facebook and Twitter, while they are also understood to have been shared on messaging apps.

The identification of a child in court proceedings can result in a maximum jail term of three years, or a fine of up to €10,000.

Independent.ie understands that no formal complaint has yet been made to gardai by either the parents of the two 14-year-olds, or their legal representatives.

However, the issue surrounding the posting of images of both convicted juveniles has been raised at the Central Criminal Court.

Ana Kriegel
Ana Kriegel

Sources said the initial stages of the investigation into the posting of images will be run by detectives in Lucan, in the DMR West Division.

However, this is expected to widen to include specialist gardai attached to national units such as the Garda Cyber Crime Unit and the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

"The investigation is in the early stages and gardai will have to see where it takes them," a source said. It will be examined if images were uploaded, or shared, by people across the country.

In the aftermath of the guilty verdict, gardai warned the public that anyone who identified a child in court proceedings could face jail time.

Garda HQ released a statement in which they warned that identifying children in court proceedings, and sharing images of juveniles before the courts, can result in a large fine or imprisonment.

The statement, released through the garda press office, did not specifically reference the Ana Kriegel trial.

In memory: Flowers laid in front of Glenwood House, Lucan, where Ana Kriegel died. Picture: Mark Condren
In memory: Flowers laid in front of Glenwood House, Lucan, where Ana Kriegel died. Picture: Mark Condren

"An Garda Síochána would like to remind members of the public in relation to the anonymity of a child in court proceedings and the sharing of images of children who have appeared before the Criminal Courts and the legislation pertaining to same," a spokesman said.

"In particular to be mindful of the ‘Children Act 2001’ which covers children and the Criminal Justice System, section 252(1) (b) : “ no picture which purports to be or include a picture of the child or which is likely to lead to his or her identification, shall be published or included in a broadcast."

The punishment on summary conviction can result in a maximum fine of €1,500, or 12 month imprisonment.

On conviction on indictment, a person can receive a fine of up to €10,000 or a maximum prison term of three years, or both.

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