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Boy B given April date to appeal conviction for murdering Ana Kriegel

The 15-year-old was sentenced to a term of 15 years.

Image: Kriégel family

ONE OF THE teenage boys found guilty of murdering schoolgirl, Ana Kriégel, will seek to have his conviction overturned on 24 April. 

The 15-year-old, referred to in court as Boy B, was unanimously found guilty of murdering the “lonely and vulnerable” schoolgirl last June and was sentenced to 15 years detention, to be reviewed after eight years. 

Boy A and Boy B, whose identities cannot be published as they are children, were just 13-years-old when they murdered 14-year-old Ana in May 2018. 

Boy B lured Ana from her home, knowing that his friend was waiting to attack her in a derelict house in St Catherine’s Park in Lucan.

He gave several different versions of events to gardaí but eventually admitted seeing Boy A attacking Ana. 

Now aged 15, they were unanimously found guilty of murdering Ana by a Central Criminal Court jury last June. Boy A was also convicted of Ana’s aggravated sexual assault in a manner that involved serious violence.

Boy A was sentenced to life imprisonment with a review after 12 years, and eight years imprisonment for aggravated sexual assault. No appeal has been lodged on his behalf. 

Boy B is seeking to appeal against his conviction only, meaning no appeal is being sought against the severity of his sentence. 

During case management proceedings in the Court of Appeal today, 24 April was fixed as an early hearing date for Boy B’s conviction appeal. 

Grounds of appeal 

President of the Court of Appeal Justice George Birmingham said arrangements would be put in place for the hearing that both sides consider appropriate.

As both boys were children, the Central Criminal Court adopted procedures from the Children’s Court, which saw lawyers and judges wearing suits and ties rather than gowns. 

Counsel for Boy B, Damien Colgan SC, said breaks were taken during the course of the trial on account of the boys’ ages. Colgan said he expected the appeal hearing to take a day. 

Counsel for the Director of Public Prosecutions, Brendan Grehan SC, said two grounds of appeal identified by Boy B’s lawyers were “fairly straightforward” but another ground of appeal “might take longer”. 

Colgan said he had identified a number of issues that would be argued as grounds of appeal, and he asked for the entirety of the transcript of the 42-day trial to be released so “we can start working” on them. 

Grehan said the case had attracted media interest that was “above and beyond” what was usual and the trial judge, Justice Paul McDermott, had restricted the media’s representation in court during the trial. 

Justice Birmingham listed the case for mention on 13 March “to take stock” of arrangements that would be put in place. 

Boy B was not present in court for the case management procedure. He is currently detained in Oberstown Children Detention Campus and there are already processes in place for his direct transfer to court for the appeal hearing, the court heard. 

The earliest possible release date for Boy B is in June 2027. 

Sentencing the boys last year, Justice McDermott said that the boys’ first period in detention would last until they were 18 when they will be transferred to an adult facility.

Justice McDermott ordered that reports on the boys’ engagement with educational, psychological and psychiatric services be prepared to assist those taking over their custody. 

Reports should then be prepared at two-year intervals, chronicling what has happened, which would be available to the courts at the time of their review, the judge said. 

After the boys’ transfer to adult prisons in 2022, reports should be submitted in 2024, 2026 and 2028, he said.

They are not reports for the purpose of micro-managing the sentences, it is for the courts to have a very clear view of what’s happened during the course of their detention.

How both boys faced up to their culpability while in custody would be a factor in determining how long they would eventually end up being detained, Justice McDermott stated. 

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Ruaidhrí Giblin

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