A 17 year-old juvenile has been brought before Naas District Court in connection with a fire at the former Forge pub in Naas and causing damage to a crane at the Mercy Convent.
At today’s sitting of the court, the juvenile, who is in State care, was remanded on bail on strict conditions, including giving up his phone and not leaving his residence unless in the company of a care worker.
Another man, Jason Crossan (18), 48 Sarto Road, Naas was remanded in custody for a week in connection with similar charges, but not with the fire at the Forge Inn.
The juvenile made no reply when seven charges were put to him, including estimated damage of €350,000 to the Forge pub on March 14.
It is also alleged the juvenile and another person climbed into the crane at the Mercy Convent, Sallins road, Naas between March 19 and 20 last. It is alleged the pair spent 40 minutes in the cabin at the top before setting fire to it and climbing down, causing estimated damage of €90,000. It is alleged aerosol was used to set it on fire.
The juvenile is also alleged to have caused damage to the Post Office in Naas on March 14, damage to wheelie bins at Main Street, Naas on March 21, damage to the Caspo Centre roof on March 20, damage to cars at Main Street and Basin Street on March 13, and damage to O’Connor’s pub, Naas on March 20.
It is also alleged that damage was caused by the juvenlie at Westco Electrical, Friary road, Naas on March 20 and to security cameras in the Naas Town Centre around the same dates.
When told of the alleged crane incident in particular, Judge Desmond Zaidan said: “Talking about dicing with death.”
Garda Inspector Oliver Henry said there were three fires on the Tuesday night.
Tim Kennelly, solicitor for the juvenile, and Inspector Henry said strict bail conditions were agreed.
Judge Zaidan said that if they agreed, he could not override it and refuse bail, describing the actions of the juvenile as “alleged madness.”
Gardai said the juvenile, who has been in State care since the age of 13 was “easily led.”
A care worker involved with the juvenile told the Court he was surprised when he heard the allegations.
Meanwhile, Mr Crossan (18) consented to be remanded in custody for a week to March 28 in connection with a number of offences: the Caspo roof damage; trespass at the Post Office; damage to newspapers at Supervalu, Kilcullen road, Naas,;damage to O’Connor’s pub (he denied this charge when it was put to him by Gardai); damage to the crane at the Mercy Convent, damage to two wheelie bins at McCormack’s pub, Naas, on March 21 and damage to Westco Electrical property at Friary road, Naas on March 20.
The court was told that Mr Crossan had a difficult past and had spent time in State care until he turned eighteen in January.
Conal Boyce, solicitor, representing Mr Crossan, said he would revisit the possibility of bail on March 28.
The court was told any reports on Mr Crossan would be made available to the Court.