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Dublin teen in court after vicious mugging of US tourists

CourtsBy Tom Tuite
Dublin teen in court after vicious mugging of US tourists

AN 82-YEAR-OLD American woman and her family were viciously set on by a group of youths when they stopped to take photos at a Dublin park, a court has heard.

One of the tourists, Ryan Dillon (28), ended up in hospital with wounds to his face and a broken shoulder after he, his girlfriend and her elderly grandmother went sightseeing in Swords.

A 17-year-old boy, who is in care, appeared at the Dublin Children's Court charged with violent disorder with at least two other named males and other unknown people, and robbery in connection with the incident at Swords Town Park on the evening of May 2, 2015.

At 8.45pm Boston tourists Elaine Berube (82), her granddaughter Nicole Berube (26) and the young woman's boyfriend Ryan Dillon went into the park to take photos.

The tourists had arrived in Ireland earlier that day.

In an outline of the allegations, Garda Keith Delaney said it was alleged that the teenage defendant had been in a group who had been drinking in the park.

Some of the gang started to stand in with the tourists for the photos and it was believed that this was to distract them, Gda Delaney said. One of the gang snatched a camera bag from them and ran but was chased by Mr Dillon, it was alleged.

“The group turned on him and proceeded to attack him and his girlfriend who tried to come to his assistance. A knife was produced by one of the group in the attack,” said Gda Delaney.

The court heard Mr Dillon suffered facial injuries as well as a broken shoulder and he required hospital treatment. Defence solicitor Gareth Noble put it to the garda that it was not suggested his client had caused the injuries; Gda Delaney said the teenager was part of the group that attacked the man. The judge said that the garda was alleging there was “common design”.

It is alleged that during the robbery €250, a camera bag worth €50, a lady's purse and contents, a Samsung mobile phone and a Go-Pro camera were all stolen from Mr Dillon.

The evidence was given after a preliminary hearing commenced to determine if the case should be dealt with in the juvenile court or instead go forward to the circuit court, which can impose lengthier sentences. Judge O'Connor noted the Director of Public Prosecutions has recommended that the teen should be tried in the higher court.

Judge John O'Connor deferred ruling on the issue saying he wanted  CCTV footage that gardai had obtained to be shown in court. The case resumes in March. The teenager, who was accompanied to court by his social worker and care staff, was remanded on continuing bail.