Wednesday 13 November 2019

Gardaí suspected children were Ana Kriegel's killers once body was found

Ana Kriegel was 14 when she was murdered
Ana Kriegel was 14 when she was murdered

Gabija Gataveckaite

Gardaí suspected that they were looking at a case where children may have killed another child once Ana Kriegel’s body was found.

Speaking to reporters at a press briefing following the sentencing of Boy A and Boy B today, Superintendent John Gordon said that gardaí suspected very early in the investigation that children may have killed Ana.

When asked if it became “very clear very quickly” that they were looking at a case where children may have killed another child, he agreed.

"In the early stages, in the very early stages of the investigation, once Ana's remains had been found, yes."

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He also said that the arrest of two children was “unprecedented”.

“It’s certainly unprecedented and please God may we never have another incident of this type in this jurisdiction or anywhere else for that matter,” he said.

Ana Kriegel’s body was found in a derelict house in Lucan, Co Dublin (Family Handout/PA)
Ana Kriegel’s body was found in a derelict house in Lucan, Co Dublin (Family Handout/PA)

“It highlights the fact that we all have a duty of care towards our juvenile and our young people today and it also highlights the fact that it isn’t always necessarily adults that are offenders or can be suspects in these cases, it’s certainly something that we didn’t anticipate,” he said.

He added that the impact on members of Garda Siochana can be “considerable”.

“We’re very clear about our own requirements to mind ourselves and to mind our own people. We have an ongoing initiative in that area.”

Supt John Gordon reminded reporters of the special accommodations used by the gardaí early in the investigation.

This included robust efforts by gardaí to preserve the anonymity of Boy A and Boy B.

It included using unmarked rental garda cars, as well as black bin bags instead of garda evidence bags when searching their homes.

The two boys were also housed in separate garda stations instead of cells. The stations were cleared out of any other prisoners or personnel and the boys had bedding and furniture in their rooms when they were initially detained in late May.

“It’s very important to do this as it mitigated any possibility of a line of defence later on in the trial which would lead to any allegations of inappropriate or oppressive behaviour towards the boys who were quite vulnerable,” he explained.

Files are now before the DPP in relation to an investigation into attempts to identify Boy A and Boy B on social media.

“There was commentary on social media and that has continued to a point where it has fallen to an investigation, a separate investigation and there are files with the DPP at this stage in relation to that,” Supt Gordon told Independent.ie.

“But it is important to remind people that here is an order of the court and that extends to social media in to attempt to identify Boy A or Boy B and their families and it’s very important that people remember that.”

The teenagers, who are now 15 years old, were found guilty in June of the murder of Ana Kriegel at an abandoned farmhouse in Lucan on May 14, 2018.

Boy A was also convicted of aggravated sexual assault.

This morning, Mr Justice Paul McDermott imposed a life sentence on Boy A, with a review after 12 years.

The judge also imposed a fixed sentence of eight years for Boy A's aggravated sexual assault of the schoolgirl.

In relation to Boy B, Judge McDermott said he was satisfied the two cases were significantly different, and he imposed a sentence of 15 years, with a review after eight years

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