Wednesday 25 April 2018

Man accused of raping Spanish student could face extra charges, court told

The old Glass Bottle site in Sandymount was searched by gardaí as part of the
investigation. Photo: Damien Eagers
The old Glass Bottle site in Sandymount was searched by gardaí as part of the investigation. Photo: Damien Eagers

Tom Tuite

GARDAI are looking to have further charges brought against a 24-year-old man accused of rape and false imprisonment of a Spanish student in Dublin, a court has heard.

The young woman, aged 18, who had just come to Ireland in recent months to live with a host family had been in Dublin on July 15 when she was allegedly brought to waste-ground in the city’s south-side and raped.

The accused, who cannot be named for legal reasons, is charged with rape, false imprisonment and threat to kill or cause serious harm to the woman at the Irish Glass Bottle site, in Ringsend in south Dublin.

The man, who was described by his lawyer as having a significant history of mental problems, made no bail application at his first hearing on July 21 last.

At that hearing Detective Garda Bryan Hunt had said in evidence that when the man was charged, “He was cautioned after each charge and made no reply to each charge.”

“The Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) has directed trial on indictment on all three matters,” Det Garda Hunt had also said.

The accused faced his third hearing today when he appeared before Judge Kathryn Hutton at Cloverhill District Court.

Det Garda Hunt asked for the case to be adjourned for four weeks, “for further charges” and he added that a file is to be submitted to the DPP.

Defence barrister Aoife O’Halloran took instructions from her client in court and then told the judge that there was consent to the four-week adjournment.

The man, who was wearing a grey tracksuit, spoke once during the hearing to confirm that he wanted to appear in person rather than via-videolink at his next hearing.

Judge Hutton was told that the man “is in custody by consent”.

At his first hearing last month, the court directed a psychiatric assessment and for psychiatric report to be obtained following a request by his solicitor.

The basis for the application was concerns raised by the defence for his mental well-being. His solicitor had said the man “does have a significant history” and he had medical reports on him.

The defence solicitor had said given the seriousness of the charge and the fact his client is in receipt of a social welfare payment he was making an application for legal aid, which was also granted.

The accused had been originally arrested on July 17, two days after the alleged rape but he was released without charge the following day.

However, he was re-arrested for the purpose of being charged on July 21 last and has been in custody on remand since then.

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