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Gardai given more time on stolen laptop

A CASE against a man accused of handling a laptop computer that was stolen in a burglary will be struck out unless gardai follow a court order for disclosure of documents to the defence.

Paschal Kelly (44) is alleged to have been caught handling the laptop after gardai searched his Cavan home.

President of the District Court Judge Miriam Malone granted an adjournment in the case but said the prosecution had to either provide all requested documents to his solicitor or give a "reasonable explanation".

Kelly was remanded on continuing bail when he appeared at Dublin District Court on the charge.

He is facing summary trial after another judge accepted jurisdiction in the case.

Kelly, who is originally from Dublin's northside but is now based in Cavan, is charged with handling stolen property.

The alleged incident took place at his home at Hillview, Cormeen, Ballyjamesduff, on a date or dates between June 12, 2008 and December 10, 2008.

The HP laptop was stolen in a burglary in Balbriggan, north Co Dublin in early June 2009.

At a previous court sitting, a garda sergeant said it was alleged that gardai searched Kelly's house under warrant and found the laptop.

Judge Cormac Dunne said he would accept jurisdiction of the matter.

Interview

Defence solicitor Yvonne Bambury had asked for full disclosure of all statements on the matter, including a copy of the search warrant as well as a video copy of an interview which gardai conducted with Kelly.

The court heard the file was "substantial".

When the case came before Judge Malone, Ms Bambury said none of the requested documents had been disclosed by the gardai.

She said she had written to the garda on July 8 and everything she had asked to see was still outstanding.

Judge Malone refused to strike the case out and adjourned it to September 20.

"If (the documents are) not in court and there is no reasonable explanation, the case will be struck out", she said.

Ms Bambury asked the judge to relax a bail condition whereby the accused must sign on daily at a garda station.

She said the accused lived some distance from the station and asked if he could sign on once a week instead.

Judge Malone refused to do this, saying the prosecuting garda was not in court and was not on notice of the application to change the bail conditions.

She said Ms Bambury could renew her application on the next date.


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