Feud-accused swordsman must wait at least another week for bail

A man charged for his part in a feud-related sword attack in Willow Park last year, in which a woman had her arm broken, was granted a highly conditional bail in the District Court this week (October 6 ). However, John Collins (20 ), of Parslickstown Gardens, Clonsilla, Dublin 15 was nonetheless remanded back to custody until his appearance in the Dublin Circuit Court next Wednesday (October 13 ), as the High Court refused him bail on these unrelated matters on August 16.

Collins is charged with violent disorder, assault causing harm, and possession of a sword, in relation to the attack in Thornbury Drive on June 5, 2009, and he pleaded not guilty to the offence at an earlier date.

In court this week, Collins was handed the book of evidence and was returned for trial to the Mullingar Circuit Court, sitting in Tullamore, on November 30. He was granted legal aid for a senior and junior barrister.

Garda David Turner objected to bail for Collins on account of the number of times he had previously missed court dates, but Judge Patrick Clyne reminded the garda that this particular objection under the Bail Act was based on the seriousness of the charge, rather than the Gardai’s doubt about his turning up for court.

“This man is effectively serving a sentence on an allegation,” the judge pointed out.

Garda Turner made a number of other statements that cannot be reported, before revealing the bail refusal from the High Court on other matters.

Judge Clyne accepted this and acknowledged any bail he may offer on these matters was “entirely theoretical” but felt he had to set “realistic terms” for Collins in case “he is to go before the High Court again”.

Inspector Nicholas Farrell suggested an independent surety of €2,000, and the judge agreed. He went on to say this could be paid in one go, or as two payments of €1,000, but that “it must come from an approved source”.

He ordered Collins reside at the above address, that “he have no truck [contact] with any of the seven named witnesses, and that includes by text”, that he observe a 10pm to 7am curfew, and that he sign on daily at Blanchardstown Garda Station.

All of these conditions are contingent on the Circuit Court judge’s decision in Dublin on Wednesday. If allowed bail then, the Athlone conditions come into play.

Three members of the Power family - Larry (40 ), his wife Angela (39 ), and their son John (20 ), along with a minor, have already been indicted in relation to this attack.

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