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Former councillor pleads not guilty to perverting course of justice and forging search warrants

Steven Wrenn, 50, was charged with four offences over warrants allegedly drafted to search two properties in 2021.

A PEACE COMMISSIONER and former councillor has pleaded not guilty to perverting the course of justice and forging search warrants for Garda operations in Dublin.

The Garda Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) has been investigating the activities of officers in a Dublin unit.

Peace commissioner Steven Wrenn, 50, was initally charged in March with four offences over warrants allegedly drafted to search two properties in 2021, and he was granted €200 bail.

Wrenn, of Iveragh Road, Whitehall, Dublin, appeared again at Dublin District Court today when he indicated, via his solicitor, that he was pleading not guilty and opting for a trial before a Circuit Court judge and jury.

The former Labour Party councillor is accused of making a false instrument, a search warrant and information between 30 September and 29 December 2021, used to induce another person to accept it as genuine for a search carried out on 7 September 2021, of a basement flat at Mountjoy Square, Dublin.

He is also accused of making another false instrument between 28 August and 20 December 2021, a warrant for a search on 19 June at Kenilworth Road, Dublin 6.

It is also alleged that over the same two time periods, he twice perverted the course of public justice by signing the warrants.

ACU Detective Garda Simon Warnock had said the accused “made no reply” when charged on 12 March at Clontarf Garda Station.

He confirmed directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) have been received for summary disposal in the District Court if the accused pleads guilty.

That meant if he contested the charges, the case would go to the Circuit Court, which has wider sentencing powers.

He was then granted an adjournment to consider his position.

Today, Judge Treasa Kelly noted from defence solicitor Tim O’Hanlon that “Mr Wrenn is pleading not guilty”.

Judge Kelly ordered him to appear again on 6 June to be served with the prosecution’s book of evidence and returned for trial to the higher court.

Four gardaí, including a sergeant, have appeared before the court on connected charges.

The DPP directed “trial on indictment” in their cases. They are due back in court later this month to be served with their books of evidence.