Judge revokes legal aid and orders firm ‘down here to explain’
‘It is unacceptable on every level,’ a judge remarked when, for the second time, a firm of solicitors representing a defendant was not present in court for a hearing.
Jonathan Whelan (37), Macroom Avenue, Coolock, Dublin 17, had pleaded guilty to charges of assaulting a female causing her harm and producing a knife while committing an assault, at Hawthorn Court, Drogheda, on 10 May 2020.
The DPP had directed the matter could be dealt with summarily in the district court on a plea of guilty only.
The case had been put back for Judge McKiernan to hear from the victim. The accused man appeared via video link.
After the woman gave evidence, Judge McKiernan noted that for the second time there was no one in court to represent the defendant.
‘This is just incredible there is no solicitor present.’
Whelan was remanded on continuing bail to Dundalk Court via video link on 1 June for finalisation.
The judge revoked legal aid and said she wanted the solicitor ‘down here to explain’ on the next day.