Blessington man accused of sexual assault of girl he met on Snapchat

Refused bail at Naas District Court

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Blessington man accused of sexual assault of girl he met on Snapchat

The case was heard at Naas District Court yesterday.

A Blessington man who faces a charge of sexual assault has been refused bail after it was discovered that Gardai found him packing up all his belongings in apparent preparation for a one way flight to Berlin.

The man is alleged, on a date unknown between February 13 and 14 last, at his address, to have allegedly committed sexual assault on a girl he befriended on Snapchat, a social media platform.

He appeared before Judge Desmond Zaidan yesterday, Wednesday, May 10, and through his solicitor Stephen Walsh, applied for bail.

Garda Paddy Twomey objected to bail on the basis of the seriousness of the charge and the danger that the man was a flight risk and would therefore not appear before the court to stand trial.

He outlined to the court how Gardai were alerted by airport police that the man had booked himself onto a one way flight for Berlin which was due to take off on May 2 last.

This lead Gardai to call to his house where they discovered that he was in the process of packing up his belongings.

“He has no employment here and is not in receipt of an income,” Garda Twomey explained.

Mr Walsh told the court that his 19-year-old client had never been in trouble before and has no previous convictions - and neither did he have any bench warrants issued for him in the past.

He also noted that his client was never advised that he could not travel and that he is perfectly entitled to do so.

“He’s entitled to go anywhere in the absence of any warning not to do so,” he put to Gardai Twomey, who agreed with him. However the Garda added that he had “no faith” that the man would turn up to meet a case.

“He had all his personal belongings packed up,” the Garda reiterated.

Mr Walsh said that he had two people willing to go surety for the defendant and that he was intending to sit exams in a couple of weeks.

And he reiterated that his client is “perfectly entitled to book a flight”.

Judge Desmond Zaidan refused bail and adjourned the matter for two weeks.