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Wicklow

Newtownmountkennedy: Four charged as Garda Inspector tells court violence was 'prolonged and extremely dangerous'

Each accused agreed to sign a €1,000 bond for bail.

lads (Clockwise from top left) Ben McNulty Michael Synnott, Shane Synnott, Sharon McCann © RollingNews.ie © RollingNews.ie

FOUR PEOPLE HAVE appeared in court charged following a public order incident at a site earmarked for asylum seekers in Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow last night.

Six people were arrested for public disorder offences at the site.

Three men and one woman have been charged for offences contrary to the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act 1994.

Outlining details at Bray District Court this afternoon, Inspector Niall Kennedy of Bray Garda Station said that gardaí at the scene faced a “level of violence” that was “relentless, prolonged and extremely dangerous”.

“Garda vehicles were damaged, windscreens smashed, tyres slashed,” Kennedy said.

The four individuals present before the court were arrested during a policing operation that was aiming to “prevent damage to property and persons”, he added.

Prior to last night’s incident, the court heard that gardaí were required to be present to allow a company’s lawful work to be carried out on the site, which was earmarked for asylum seekers.

Kennedy said the situation began to change at approximately 7pm.

“Protesters became actively involved in alleged criminal activity, exhibiting aggressive behaviour which developed into a mob, setting fires, intent on causing criminal damage to property and causing injuries to members of An Garda Síochána present,” he said.

The first of the four to appear before the court was Michael Synnott (56), with an address at Season Park, Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow.

He was followed by 19-year-old Shane Synnott, at the same address in Season Park, Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow.

Also charged were Ben McNulty (41), from Rossmore Avenue, Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow and Sharon McCann (38), who had an address provided as Mountainview Drive, Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow.

Gardaí did not object to bail for any of the four accused.

All four are subject to bail conditions requiring them to stay away from River Lodge, Trudder House and its environs.

They must also not “engage in protest activity in the Newtownmountkennedy area” according to the terms of the bail.

Kennedy told the court that there “may be further charges” brought in relation to the four accused.

Judge Nicola Andrews told the four that if there is any change of address then gardaí must be notified.

Each accused agreed to sign a €1,000 bond for bail.

They are set to appear again before the court on 9 May next.

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