Saturday 25 November 2017

Olympic boxer O'Reilly in court on breach of the peace charges

Charged: Olympic boxer Michael O’Reilly.
Charged: Olympic boxer Michael O’Reilly.
Ralph Riegel

Ralph Riegel

Olympic boxer Michael O'Reilly (23) has been charged with public order offences in court.

Mr O'Reilly, who was sent home from the Rio Olympics last month after one of his samples tested positive for a banned substance, appeared before Thurles District Court on a bench warrant.

He had not appeared before Thurles District Court when the matter was first listed before Judge Elizabeth MacGrath on May 3 last.

A bench warrant was subsequently issued.

The boxer, of Mountrath, Co Laois, is charged under Section 4, 6 and 8 of the Public Order Act in relation to an alleged incident at Ballybeg, Littleton, in north Tipperary on April 18 last.

It is alleged that O'Reilly was drunk in public; engaged in threatening or insulting behaviour; and failed to comply with the lawful instructions of a garda.

The boxer appeared in court wearing blue jeans and a light blue shirt. He did not speak during the hearing.

Judge MacGrath was told that gardaí were seeking an adjournment in the matter given that further charges may be involved.

Sergeant Declan O'Carroll, for the State, said directions are now awaited from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

"Further charges may be involved," he said. "There are a number of allegations from one side. It is a matter where there were several arrests."

"The file in the matter is almost ready."

JJ Fitzgerald, for Mr O'Reilly, said his client was anxious for the matter to be dealt with.

Gardaí sought an adjournment in the matter until late December.

Judge MacGrath said she was anxious for it to be dealt with, given that it involved an April date.

"In the meantime, if it is clarified that no further charges are preferred, all statements should be given to Mr Fitzgerald," she said.

"Your client (Mr O'Reilly) has lost time on his own account."

Judge MacGrath queried why Mr O'Reilly did not appear before the district court on May 3 last.

"He had a very good reason why he was not here," Mr Fitzgerald said.

However, Judge MacGrath noted that Mr O'Reilly could have instructed a solicitor on that date instead.

Judge MacGrath adjourned the matter until December 6 next.

Mr O'Reilly (23) is from Clonmel, Co Tipperary but has been based in Laois over recent years.

A member of Portlaoise Boxing Club, he was sent home from the Olympic Games in Rio last month after it was confirmed a sample he had supplied in Ireland had tested positive for a banned substance.

Irish Independent

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