Healy-Rae sons to deny assault charges against them
TWO sons of Kerry TD Michael Healy-Rae will appear before Kenmare District Court today on assault charges.
Jackie (23) and Kevin (21) Healy-Rae, both sons of the Independent TD, and their friend, Malachy Scannell (33), will appear before Judge David Waters in respect of charges brought over an alleged incident in the south Kerry town in December 2017.
Both Jackie and Kevin Healy-Rae are grandsons of Jackie Healy-Rae, the late Independent TD for Kerry South whose election in 1997 began the Healy-Rae political dynasty.
Jackie Healy-Rae Snr served until his retirement from the Dáil in 2011.
The young men's uncle, Danny Healy-Rae, is also an Independent TD for Kerry.
Jackie Healy-Rae Jnr - who is a candidate in next May's Local Government elections in the Castleisland area - now faces two assault charges.
One count is of alleged assault causing harm to Kieran James at Main Street in Kenmare on December 28 2017.
A second count is of alleged assault to Mr James at East Park Lane in the south Kerry town on the same date.
Kevin Healy-Rae is charged with alleged assault causing harm to Mr James in Kenmare on the same date.
Mr Scannell, who has an address at Inchinacoosh, Kilgarvan, Co Kerry, is charged with alleged assault causing harm to Mr James in Kenmare on the same date.
He also faces a charge of alleged assault causing harm to another man.
Mr Scannell faces a third charge of alleged criminal damage to a pair of spectacles belonging to that individual.
Kerry solicitor Pádraig O'Connell has indicated, on behalf of the defendants, that all charges will be vehemently denied.
He indicated that the charges will be "vigorously and fully contested."
The Director of Public Prosecutions, having considered the case file, indicated to gardaí that the matter can be disposed of at district court rather than circuit court level.
Judge Waters will hear details of the case for the first time today at Kenmare District Court.
Once he hears an outline of the case, Judge Waters must then decide whether to accept or refuse jurisdiction in the matter.
Jackie Healy-Rae Jnr is an aspiring politician and is deeply involved in election campaigns for his father and uncle.
His brother, Kevin Healy-Rae, operates a successful disc jockey business in Kerry.
Both brothers have an address at Sandymount in Kilgarvan, Co Kerry.
The district court can impose sentences of up to 12 months in prison for people convicted of assault causing harm.
However, incidents deemed serious enough can be sent forward to the Circuit Criminal Court, where there is a maximum sentence of five years in jail on conviction.