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Woman on assault charge is allowed by court to fly to Turkey for dental treatment

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Teresa Dinnegan

Teresa Dinnegan

Teresa Dinnegan

A woman accused of assaulting another female in a department store has been given the green light to fly to Turkey for dental treatment despite being on free legal aid at the taxpayer's expense.

Teresa Dinnegan (35), of Grian Ard, Longford, was due to jet out to Izmir yesterday after appearing at a sitting of Longford District Court.

She, together with a female co-accused, was charged with assaulting a woman at Penneys in Longford on March 16.

Ms Dinnegan, who is on free legal aid, applied through her solicitor John Quinn to have her bail terms relaxed.

Under those conditions, Ms Dinnegan had been confined to a 10pm to 6am curfew, to reside at an address in the Springlawn area of town and to sign on daily at Longford garda station.

Mr Quinn, defending, said he would be applying for his client to have her bail conditions temporarily lifted to allow her to  jet out to Turkey from June 14 to June 23.

The court was informed the purpose of that trip was for “dental work” to be undertaken.

Ms Dinnegan is not due to return until next Thursday when her bail conditions are to be reinstated.

Sgt Mark Mahon, for the State, said the prosecution had no difficulty with the application being made and which was subsequently granted by Judge Bernadette Owens.

At the time of that initial hearing back in March, Ms Dinnegan called into question the severity of her bail terms.

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"I am put on a curfew and I don't know why because I was attacked in a store," she said.

In adjourning the case, Judge Owens pencilled in a date of July 5 when DPP directions are expected to be made available.

The court had previously heard the alleged incident which involved a third female, who was also charged with assaulting Ms Dinnegan, stemmed from an alleged ongoing feud between rival factions.

That dispute, which is one of a number of feud-related incidents gardaí in Longford are investigating, came after a relative of Ms Dinnegan's immediate family was knocked down in a suspected hit and run incident in a local housing estate in January.

The victim, who is aged in his 20s and formerly a prime target of Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) chiefs, survived with only minor injuries.

A video posted by the man's father was uploaded onto social media the same evening in which he appeared to 'call out' a number of individuals and address claims his son had been the victim of a drive-by shooting.

Nine people have since been arrested in connection to that incident with one line of inquiry believed to centre on whether the man may have been targeted after a firearm was discharged in the town's Ardnacassa housing estate on the same afternoon.

Disturbing footage of the incident during which young children could be heard screaming and ducking for cover is understood to be a key part of the garda investigation into the incident.

Ms Dinnegan is due back before a sitting of Longford District Court on July 5 when DPP directions are expected to be made available.


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