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British man on Dublin stag gets no jail time for punching student on dancefloor

The victim was taken to hospital with a fractured jaw and damage to his teeth.
Apr 28th 2018, 7:15 AM 33,857 48

A BRITISH STAG tourist who assaulted a student on a Dublin nightclub dance floor has been given a suspended sentence after a judge said it would be “unjust” to jail him.

Mark Wragg (36) punched the man in the face at D2 nightclub on Harcourt Street in the early hours of 18 November last year, fracturing his jaw, Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard yesterday.

Wragg, with an address in Snapehill Crescent, Dronfield, Derbyshire, UK, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to the man.

Wragg was part of a 25-strong stag party that travelled to Dublin for the weekend, Garda JP Keohane told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting. It was his first time in Ireland.

The victim, a 20-year-old Maynooth University student, told gardaí he was on the dance floor on the night in question when Wragg came up to him and “aggressively” told him to keep away from him.

Wragg later told gardaí the victim was a “big guy” who was dancing too close to him and “pushing his chest out”.

The victim pushed Wragg and Wragg responded by punching him in the face.

The victim was taken to hospital with a fractured jaw and damage to his teeth. Wragg was ejected from the nightclub and arrested shortly afterwards.

He repeatedly told gardaí he “should have walked away” after the other man pushed him. “I lost my temper,” he told gardaí. “I raised my hand to his face and I shouldn’t have done that.”

Defence barrister, Keith Spencer BL, said his client was a self-employed gardener and a family man, who is married with children. He has no previous convictions in the UK.

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Spencer noted his client was provoked prior to the assault but said he regretted it deeply. Wragg had €2,000 in court for his victim as a token of his remorse. This had been accepted by the victim, Garda Keohane said.

Sentencing Wragg, Judge Martin Nolan said the victim pushing Wragg first, “could be regarded as provocation but not justification”. But he said Wragg had met the case against him, had cooperated with gardaí and had an unblemished record.

He handed down a sentence of 18 months which he suspended in its entirety.

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Isabel Hayes


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