21 November 2014 No Comments by The Northern Standard

An application for bail brought at Monaghan District Court by a man accused of a breach of a sex offenders’ order made against him in the Circuit Court was refused by Judge Sean MacBride because of the likelihood of the accused reoffending.

The man, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, was told by Judge MacBride that he appeared to be living “in a delusional world”. The Judge also described the accused as “a Walter Mitty character”.

Informing the Press of the publication restrictions that applied to the case, Judge MacBride said it was permissible to report that a male person had been charged somewhere in the District Court No. 5 area of Cavan and Monaghan, and it was alleged that this person contravened the provisions of a Sex Offenders Order made on July 24 2014 on the Northern Circuit, in that it was alleged that the male defendant made an unsolicited approach to a minor under the age of 18 contrary to Section 22 of the Sex Offenders Act 2001.

The Judge said it was not permissible at this stage to publish information that would tend to identify the alleged victim or the location of the accused. Different conditions could apply if the accused were subsequently convicted, and then there could be publication under certain circumstances at the discretion of the presiding judge.

Detective Inspector Fergus Treanor told the court that he was objecting to the accused man’s application for bail on the grounds that there had been a breach of an order made in the Circuit Court, and it was alleged that the defendant approached a male aged 17 and tried to entice him into his car.

Citing the likelihood of the accused man reoffending as another motivation for his objection, Detective Inspector Treanor said that the defendant had been notified that an order was being applied for in the Circuit Court but he failed to turn up for the hearing or get legal representation. The order was subsequently read over and explained to the defendant by a Detective Garda.

After the incident referred to, the defendant was interviewed and his responses suggested that he didn’t know much about the Circuit Court order, and had not read it. “I would have serious concerns that he would reoffend,” Detective Inspector Treanor told the court.

Replying to the defendant’s solicitor, Mr Damien Rudden, witness said that the defendant was co-operative in relation to the investigation. Witness agreed that the defendant was known to the Gardaí for a long number of years, and that the Gardaí knew where he lived and worked.

When Mr Rudden pointed out that the defendant was willing to give a sworn undertaking to stay away from minors under 18, Detective Inspector Treanor said the Circuit Court order was explained to the defendant, and it was obvious from his answers in interview that he did not take the order seriously.


The defendant gave evidence that if he were released on bail he would never offend again.

When Judge MacBride asked the defendant if he had been warned in the Circuit Court by the Judge about the consequences of breaching the order made against him, the defendant said he was not present in court. The document in relation to the order was subsequently served on him by the Gardaí.

With regard to the breach of the order alleged against him, the defendant commented: “I did not know what age the person was, Your Honour.”

Replying to Garda Inspector James O’Leary, the defendant said that a Detective Garda had given him a copy of the order, but he never read over it and it was not fully explained to him. He handed the order to his solicitor.

Judge MacBride: You seem to be living in a surreal world, not a world of reality.

The defendant told Inspector O’Leary that he was aware that an order was made against him under the Sex Offenders Act putting certain conditions on him.

Inspector O’Leary put it to the defendant that it was quite clear that he had never even read the order.

Judge MacBride remarked that the defendant could not look at the court with a straight face, and was not genuine.

“I have 16 years on the bench and 40 years in this industry and I am telling you now you are not fooling me,” the Judge told the defendant. “You are living in a make-believe, delusional world and are a Walter Mitty character.”

In further cross-examination by Inspector O’Leary, the defendant said he remembered being interviewed by the Gardaí at his home on November 10. Asked what his answer had been when questioned as to his awareness of the order made against him, the defendant replied that he believed he said he didn’t know what age the person was.

Inspector O’Leary put it to the defendant that what he had said was, “They put me back on the Sex Offenders Register for the crack of it.” The Inspector submitted to the defendant that this was his general attitude to court orders, and that if he were put on bail he would reoffend.

When Judge MacBride asked if he had made the remark to the Detective-Garda that the Inspector had attributed to him, the defendant replied that he had.

Judge MacBride said he was refusing bail in the case on a number of grounds. There was a clear breach of a Circuit Court order of His Honour Judge John O’Hagan made on July 24 2014. It was the court’s view, based on the State case and in particular the admission under oath by the accused that he had stated to a Garda officer, “They put me back on the Sex Offenders Register for the crack of it”, that the accused and defendant in this case had no intention of abiding by court orders, and therefore posed a severe risk to society and the well-being of persons under 18.

The Judge added that if granted bail there was a severe risk that the accused would continue to commit further serious offences. He was therefore refusing bail, and remanding the accused in custody to Cloverhill, to appear again at Cavan District Court on Thursday, November 20 at 10.30 am.

Judge MacBride made an order granting free legal aid to the accused.

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