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After boy stops abduction of his young sister, a man has now been charged

Michael Martin appeared in Portlaoise District Court today charged with falsely imprisoning the young girl.

Updated 4.41 pm

A 35-YEAR-OLD man has been charged in connection with the attempted abduction of a young girl in Co Laois.

The attempted abduction happened when a man tried to put the young girl in the back of a jeep but was stopped when the girl’s 10-year-old brother jumped on the back of the vehicle.

The man, Michael Martin, was being held at Portlaoise Garda Station since yesterday but has now been charged. He appeared at Portlaoise District Court earlier today.

The incident involving the little girl happened in Cullahill, Co. Laois at around 11am on Wednesday. Martin was arrested in Kilkenny the next day.

Speaking on RTÉ this morning, Paul Williams of the Irish Independent said that the children’s escape led to a major garda operation.

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“They alerted their parents which then sparked a very major garda operation which lasted for about 24 hours until this man was arrested near Castlecomer,” Williams said.

“It’s an extraordinary story. The gardaí down there are very very vociferous on this kid, they’re going to recommend this boy for every bravery award they can find including the people of the year awards because this truly was an act of selfless heroism.”

- Additional reporting by Michelle Hennessy.

Read: Man arrested after 10-year-old boy saves his little sister from abduction >

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Rónán Duffy

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