Pair barred from Dublin’s O'Connell Street for one year
ASBOs have been imposed on two men after a judge heard evidence that they were suspected to be involved in drug transactions and their presence around the O'Connell Street area frightened members of the public.
Garda Superintendent Sean Ward, of Store Street station, succeeded in getting ASBOs (anti-social behaviour orders) imposed on two Dublin men: 27-year-old Wayne Donnelly, from Riverdale Park, Palmerstown and Paul Brazil, 33, who lives at Carnew Road, in Stoneybatter.
Following a hearing at Dublin District Court today, Judge John O'Neill agreed to grant the ASBOs and he specified that neither men are allowed to enter O'Connell St or surrounding areas in Dublin 1 between the hours of 7am and 9pm for the next 12 months.
Failure to abide by these terms can lead to a criminal prosecution, a three-month jail term and a fine of up to €3,000.
The court action had been brought after each man had been repeatedly issued with adult behaviour warnings by gardai patrolling the city-centre.
Gda Sgt Adrian Kinsella told the court that on the morning of February 7 last year, Donnelly had been huddled with five other people at Lower Abbey Street; passers-by were giving them a “wide berth” and “crossing the road to avoid this group”.
Gda Sgt Kinsella told Donnelly to desist loitering in a manner likely to intimidate. On July 22 last, at about 4pm, Sgt Kinsella spotted Donnelly outside a shop at O'Connell Street.
“People were making it their business to avoid the group,” said Sgt Kinsella who agreed that Donnelly was searched but nothing was found on him.
Garda Daniel Beckett told the court that on June 4 last year, he spotted Donnelly loitering on Lower O'Connell Street “involved in what appeared to be a suspected drugs transaction”.
No drugs were found on Donnelly but Gda Beckett also said other people were intimidated by the 27-year-old's presence. On July 6 last Donnelly was spotted outside the entrance to Clery's department store with known drug users.
Customers avoided the group and used an alternative door to go into the premises, “due to the large crowd and stature of Wayne Donnelly,” said Gda Beckett.
Gda Tom Powell said that on July 1 last, Donnelly had been at O'Connell Street, outside Clery's with drug addicts around him. He was “looking around vigorously” and believed to be engaged in a drugs transaction. The public were giving Donnelly a wide berth and used an alternative entrance to get into Clery's.
He was searched but nothing was found on him, the court also heard
At lunch-time on July 22 last, Gda Powell spotted Donnelly on O'Connell Street and he believed the man was involved in a drug transaction. He described seeing him “looking up at the Garda camera to see which way it was pointing”.
“I asked him why he was monitoring the garda camera and he just grinned at me,” said Gda Powell who added that a search was carried out but nothing was found on Donnelly, who did not give evidence in the hearing.
The court heard evidence from three gardai about the alleged anti-social and intimidating behaviour of unemployed father-of-three Paul Brazil. Gda Richard Markey said that on March 19 last year, the 33-year-old had been seen at a Luas stop on Lower Abbey Street. He was angrily shouting into his phone while members of the public moved away from him and appeared intimidated.
Gda Markey said Brazil told him that he was in the area to buy Methadone, a controlled substance.
Gda Sgt Eric Kelly said that on July 25 last year, Brazil had been on O'Connell Street and it appeared he was engaged in a drug transaction, “exchanging tablets for money”. Members of the public were intimidated, he also claimed.
However, Brazil didn't have any drugs on him when he was searched. Gda Sgt Adrian Kinsella said that on May 8 last year he spotted Brazil with a group of people on O'Connell Street. “I could see hand movements and something handed over,” he said.
Brazil's speech was slurred, his eyes "drooped" and the rest of the group “scarpered”, he also said.
In evidence, Brazil told his barrister that he had never said to Gda Markey that he had been in the area to buy methadone. He admitted he was a recovering addict and claimed he had been having a row over the phone with his girlfriend.
He also said that he needed to go through the O'Connell Street area to collect his benefits and to visit his son and other relatives, and he denied he had been involved in drug transactions.