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Irishman granted bail after alleged 'one-punch' assault on brother in Australia


Brothers Barry and Patrick Lyttle (inset) and the scene of the incident in Sydney

Brothers Barry and Patrick Lyttle (inset) and the scene of the incident in Sydney


Brothers Barry and Patrick Lyttle

An Irish man has been granted bail with strict conditions after an alleged 'one-punch' blow to brother who remains critical in hospital.

Barry Lyttle, from Belfast, made his second appearance in court in Sydney, where magistrates said there was a risk of him leaving the country.

However the 33-year-old, who was charged with causing grievous bodily harm to his younger brother Patrick, 31, on a night out, was granted bail with strict conditions.

He must surrender his passport, live with his aunt in Sydney and report to the police on a daily basis.

Barry was also ordered not to approach his brother within 12 hours of consuming alcohol.

The brothers' 74-year-old father, Oliver Lyttle, was clearly emotional as he left his son’s bedside to attend the court hearing with Barry's aunt.

Afterwards, Oliver said: "It's great that he is out"

"I want to thank everybody for the way things went and for the sympathy," he added.

It is understood Patrick Lyttle travelled to Australia earlier last year and was joined at Christmas by Barry and their father for a family holiday in Sydney.

Friends were quoted as saying Patrick had been backpacking in Australia, touring the country for about five months, before his brother and father flew to Sydney for Christmas.

Shortly before two met up in Sydney, Barry posted on Facebook: "Not be long bro! See ya soon. Safe trip the pair of ya!"

It is understood the pair stayed out in the Kings Cross area of the city in the early hours of Saturday after their father went home.

Police allege there was a disagreement between the brothers around 3am on Saturday and Patrick pushed Barry, who responded with one punch which caused Patrick to fall and hit his head on the road.

However, if convicted, Barry will not face Australia’s controversial minimum four year sentence for a ‘one-punch’ assault as the amount of alcohol in his system was well below the threshold.

Superintendent Michael Fitzgerald, of the New South Wales Police, had previously said alcohol was not a factor in the alleged assault as Barry's blood alcohol concentration reading was in the low range.

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