Afghan man (21) assaulted during prison riot granted bail

CourtsBy Shuki Byrne
Safi (21) spent several weeks in prison after being arrested
Safi (21) spent several weeks in prison after being arrested

An Afghani man who was imprisoned for three weeks after failing to produce documentation has been granted bail.

Wali Ullah Safi (21) appeared before Naas District Court and was granted bail on the condition he finds suitable accommodation by Monday. 

The 21-year-old, who is now officially an asylum seeker, was charged under the Immigration Act for failing to produce documentation proving his identity. 

He was found at the side of the motorway near Naas several weeks ago and was arrested as he was not able to produce appropriate documentation.

The young man then spent a number of weeks in prison during which he was attacked.  

He was taken hostage by a number of prisoners at Cloverhill who subjected him to a brutal beating. He received a broken arm and was slashed in the face. 

Safi told authorities via an interpreter he had fled Afghanistan and arrived here several weeks ago. 

Judge Patrick Clyne said that he would grant Mr Safi bail on the assumption that he would be housed under direct provision.

Mr Safi's solicitor Conal Boyce said that he was "now an asylum seeker who has effectively put himself into the system" last week.

He said that this entitled Mr Safi to "a certain status" by which he should be offered help from the State.

Mr Boyce said that he was working with various organisations who were trying to help house him and that on these conditions he should be granted bail.

Mr Safi now has until next Monday to find housing and notify gardai within 24 hours.

From there he will be required to sign on at the nearest garda station once a week.

He will next appear before the court on September 7, where he is expected to have full documentation of his asylum status and identification.

Shuki Byrne and Paul Healy