Monday 23 April 2018

Final two men jailed for attacking group in Temple Bar

Criminal Courts of Justice (CCJ) Dublin
Criminal Courts of Justice (CCJ) Dublin

Jessica Magee and Aoife Nic Ardghail

Two men have been jailed at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for attacking a group in Temple Bar almost four years ago.

Mark Jones, a DJ, and his friend Ross Butler were assaulted by four men in the early hours of October 10, 2010 at Eustace Street and Curved Street in Dublin 2.

Two of the attackers have already received suspended sentences, but Judge Desmond Hogan had delayed sentencing of two other men to see if they could avail of the Restorative Justice Programme.

However after hearing a heartfelt appeal from the victims and their families, the judge assured them they would never have to face their attackers.

Today the final two attackers were dealt with.

Nero Omoruyi (20) was sentenced to three years with 18 months suspended.

However Judge Hogan agreed to delay imposition of the sentence for a week after hearing Omoruyi’s partner gave birth to a daughter this/yesterday morning.

Omoruyi of North Circular Road, pleaded guilty to assaulting Mr Butler, Mr Jones and another man, Colm Ahern on the night in question. He also pleaded guilty to producing a glass bottle.

Oluwafemi Adetunji (21) was sentenced to four years with two suspended for his role in the attack and for two sexual assaults in a night club on a separate occassion.

Adetunji of Laurel Drive, Portlaoise in Laois pleaded guilty to assaulting Mr Ahern during the fight and to possessing a stolen DJ bag of CDs at his then North Circular Road home on October 28, 2010.

The pair also pleaded guilty to violent disorder and Adetunji pleaded guilty to the sexual assaults in Sin Nightclub, Sycamore Street, Temple Bar, on 31 July, 2011.

Garda Alan Roche said Adetunji had reached under the women's dresses and grabbed their private parts forcefully. He was later arrested and apologised, saying he had been very drunk and had not meant to upset the women.

Giving evidence of the Temple Bar assault, Detective Inspector Michael Cryan said that three of the attackers claimed in interview that their three minute attack was spurred by racist comments.

The detective told Roisin Lacey BL, prosecuting, that the victims had been outside The Mezz Club when the fight broke out.

One witness later said there were “words being exchanged” between him and a group of four men who had been walking towards the crowd outside the club. He said one of the group began squaring up to him and he next remembered seeing Mr Butler on the ground.

Mr Ahern, who suffered a number of punches to his head and a burst lip, told gardai he shouldered an attacker into a bike rack.

The fight spilled onto Curved Street, where Mr Jones was knocked to the ground unconscious after he chased one of the men who had his record bag.

Det Insp Cryan agreed with Padraig Dwyer SC, defending Omoruyi, that there was no evidence that his client used the glass bottle in the fight.

Mr Dwyer submitted to Judge Hogan that there was also no evidence that his client’s kick to Mr Jones’s head had caused the injuries.  He further submitted that his client is remorseful and asked the judge to take into account that this was an out-of-character first offence.

Counsel for Adetunji, Gerry O’Brien SC, said his client wants to apologise for the sexual assaults. He submitted that Adetunji was on periphery of the Temple Bar assault and had not played a serious role.

He said he co-operated with gardaí and entered an early guilty plea to the sexual assaults.

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