A MAN arrested in connection with an investigation into a missing teenage girl has appeared before a district court.
Pitulan Anghel (28) was charged under the Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud) Offences Act following his arrest at a flat on the Portlaoise Road in Mountrath, Co Laois on Saturday night.
Hours beforehand, gardai had issued an appeal on behalf of South Yorkshire Police who had become increasingly concerned for the welfare of Netradica Anghel (15), who has been missing from her family home since last Wednesday.
Miss Anghel has been found safe and well.
Yesterday's district court appearance and charge related to the production of a Romanian identification card which bore the name Reitan Muntean.
Gda Aodhan O'Flaithearta said the defendant responded "they are lying, they broke in. I thought that ID was mine," when charged with the offence at Portaoise Garda Station at 2.23am on Sunday.
The court heard from Inspector Aidan Farrelly, who said a Romanian juvenile had been taken into social service care.
The girl had been reported missing in the UK and gardai believe she had been in the company of the defendant.
Inspector Farrelly told the court he wasn't satisfied as to the identity of the defendant and he applied to have Mr Anghel remanded in custody.
Judge Catherine Staines asked the defendant if he was resident in Ireland.
"I'm not living in Ireland but I have family and parents and uncles living here," he responded through an interpreter.
Solicitor Josephine Fitzpatrick said gardai had an English driving licence belonging to her client. She was instructed that the licence in the name of Pitulan Anghel was his correct identity.
"He gives me to understand there was a further ID found which also contains his true name," she added.
Ms Fitzpatrick, who was granted legal aid in respect of her client, said the man had an uncle living in Athy, Co Kildare.
The defendant was remanded in custody by consent to Cloverhill prison.
He is due to appear before Portlaoise District Court again on Thursday.