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Victim's nose smashed in savage gang beating

A YOUNG man planning to join the army was one of a gang of seven who kicked a man and broke his nose in an unprovoked street attack.

The victim was punched and kicked on the ground in a "horrible, indiscriminate" assault in the city centre, Dublin District Court heard.

Jonathon Lyons (21), of Iveagh Trust, Kevin Street, had been taking head shop drugs at the time of the attack.

Lyons had the case against him adjourned for the preparation of a probation report after he pleaded guilty to assaulting Piaras MacNeill.

He admitted the offence, which happened at Wexford Street on January 2 last year.

The court heard that the victim's nose was broken in two places and he was suffering recurring nosebleeds 22 months later.

Garda Martin Allen told the court there were seven people involved in the assault, in which the victim was kicked and punched on the ground.

Lyons had come to garda attention in relation to one public order offence, but had not been in trouble otherwise.

He had no difficulties in school or in his teenage years but "things changed over a period of time" because of "head shop substances", his solicitor Michael Kelleher said.

Because they were not illegal he "saw this as a green light to take substances which clearly helped him in no way".


His mother said his arrest was the "best thing that ever happened to him", Mr Kelleher told the court.

Lyons was on the substances on the night and had very little recollection of what happened.

He had been going through "a patch" at the time, and was no longer taking the substances or hanging around with the same people.

When Lyons was shown CCTV footage of the incident he was "absolutely horrified" and co-operated with the gardai.

"He is deeply ashamed and has to take responsibility for that," Mr Kelleher said.

The judge said the victim had been kicked in the head on the footpath and had suffered greatly.

The bleeding continued and was apparently chronic, he said.

"He is suffering 22 months later from this indiscriminate attack on the street," the judge said.

"Mr MacNeill has been going through a continuous patch, this (bleeding) could happen to him at his work, it could happen to him at his home, we don't know."

The court heard Lyons had applied to join the Defence Forces but had put the application on hold because this "may not be appropriate" pending the court's decision.

The case was adjourned to December 4 for a probation report.