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Man who committed assault as a juvenile is not entitled to anonymity

Central Criminal Court
Central Criminal Court

A judge has ordered that a man who was a juvenile when he assaulted three people during a pub brawl is not entitled to anonymity under the Children Act.

Michael Mongan (18) was 15-years-old when a fight broke out during the second day of a wedding.

CCTV footage showed six men fighting and throwing glasses, chairs, fire extinguishers and other furniture around the pub. The owners and staff hid in the back lounge and cellar of the pub during the incident.

The men, who are all related to each other, caused over €26,000 worth of damage. The other five men have all been convicted and received suspended sentences.

The court heard the brawl “kicked off” when Brian Mongan (30) threw a drink over Simon Reilly (28). Patrick Mongan stood in between the men and the first man then hit Patrick Mongan in the face with a pint he had in his hand.

Garda Sergeant Brian Flynn said that the footage shows Michael Mongan then picking a glass or a bottle up from the bar before assaulting John Mongan (25).

The court heard he struck the victim a number of times around the face and head while holding the object in his hand. The victim suffered deep cuts to his head and neck and had to get 24 staples to his wounds.

He told later gardaí he was trying to calm things down when he felt a bottle being shoved into his neck. He said he thought he was going to be killed and left the pub. The court heard he was not involved in any of the violence and suffered the worst injuries.

The accused took his shirt off and was punching people in the pub before going outside where he threw a bottle at Simon Reilly. The bottle hit Reilly on the head and smashed, sending shards of glass flying into the head of a nearby garda.

The accused, of Mc Ulliam Gardens, Tallaght pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to violent disorder and three charges of assault causing serious harm at The Castle Inn Pub, Rathfarnham on October 16, 2012. He has no previous convictions.

Judge Martin Nolan suspended a prison sentence of two and a half years on condition that Mongan complete 240 hours of community service work.

Stephen Dixon BL, defending, said that his client was fed an excessive amount of alcohol on the night.

“He went from being a child never in trouble to going ballistic on booze,” counsel said, adding that his client is very sorry for his actions.

Judge Nolan rejected an application from Mongan's lawyers that he should not be named because he was a juvenile at the time of the offence and there was a delay in bringing the case.

Kathleen Noctor BL, prosecuting, said that the Children Act only refers to reporting restrictions in cases involving a child. She said it was the view of the Director of Public Prosecutions that Mongan is not a child in the eyes of the law.

Judge Nolan said: “All proceedings of the court should be public in so far as possible” and said that Mongan is not a child at the time of these proceedings. He said he would have imprisoned the accused but for his age and his lack of any other convictions.

The victim John Mongan suffered permanent scars and said he feels haunted by the assault.

Brian Mongan (30) and Martin Mongan (39) of Mc Ulliam Park, Tallaght, and Simon Reilly (28), Anthony Reilly (25) and Patrick Reilly (23) all from Rathbride Demense, Co Kildare all previously received suspended sentences after pleading guilty to violent disorder on the same occasion. They were ordered to pay €3,000 for the damage caused to the pub.