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Suspected teen muggers to have separate trials

CourtsBy Tom Tuite
Suspected teen muggers to have separate trials

TWO teenagers charged with taking part in a vicious mugging of a woman in Dublin after they were allegedly identified on Facebook will be tried separately.

A 16-year-old boy and a girl, also aged 16, have been charged with robbery in Balbriggan on Aug. 30 last year and appeared at the Dublin Children's Court. They have pleaded not guilty and following submissions from the girl's barrister Judge John O'Connor agreed to an adjournment to allow separate trials to be held.

The pair, who cannot be named because they are minors, remain on bail. They will now face their hearings on separate dates in January.

In an outline of the allegations for purpose of ruling on jurisdiction, Garda Kevin Fitzpatrick had told Judge O'Connor earlier that the woman (31) was walking through a housing estate when she noticed small group of teenagers behind her. It would be alleged a girl asked her for a light and as the woman turned around the girl tried to grab her handbag from her shoulder.

It was alleged the boy was also present and grabbed the woman by her hair. There was a struggle and it was also alleged the woman was “punched several times in the head” by the boy.

The court heard the woman claims the teenage boy also produced a knife and told her to “give me your money”.

Her bag, which contained €90, house keys and her bank cards, was taken. Gda Fitzpatrick said the boy and his co-accused were identified via Facebook where the woman allegedly saw photos of them which she then showed to gardai.