Teen jailed for mugging tourist in Temple Bar

CourtsBy Tom Tuite
Teen jailed for mugging tourist in Temple Bar

A SECOND Dublin teenager has been given a six-month custodial sentence for his role in the mugging of a Scottish tourist in Temple Bar.

The boy, 16, had originally pleaded not guilty to a charge of robbery from the man who had his wallet containing about €350 stolen at Essex St West on June 15 last year.

This required the victim to travel back to Ireland, in the middle of his holidays, to give evidence for the prosecution.

However, minutes before the trial at the Dublin Children's Court was about to begin he and a co-defendant changed their pleas to guilty.

The teenager's sentencing had been adjourned for a Probation Service report to be furnished and he had been warned that the case warranted a custodial sentence.

Judge John O'Connor was furnished with a negative report on the teenager, who had grinned as the victim, Robert Robson gave evidence during the trial.

The boy, who has continued to come to garda attention, had not turned up for appointments with his probation officer.

Finalising the case, Judge O'Connor gave the teen a six-month sentence.

Last month, his co-defendant, another 16-year-old boy, was also given a six-month term in a juvenile detention centre for his role in the robbery.

Garda Bernard Maguire had shown the court CCTV evidence of the victim being surround by a gang and pushed against a window before he was struck to the head by a member of the group resulting in him falling to the ground.

Neither of the defendants, who showed no remorse during the hearing, hit the man but were part of the gang that surrounded him on the street at 1.15am, the court heard.

Gda Maguire had disagreed that the guilty pleas was of assistance to the prosecution saying he had all his witnesses ready for the trial. The teens had also been identified on CCTV footage, the court heard.

The victim, Robert Robson, told the court that he recalled being surrounded and “it was fairly obvious it was not going to end well”. He said his jaw hurt and he was bruised afterwards.

It was his second trip to Dublin and “I was not planning to come back in a hurry, it is not something you would expect”.

“You wouldn't advertise that,” he had said.

“I'm not going to say it left me mentally scarred but I was pretty shaken up by it,” Mr Robson added.

Judge O'Connor had said the man had a terrible experience.

The court was told one of the boys had a prior conviction for theft for which he received community service, while the co-defendant had previously been given the Probation Act for a public order offence.

Two adult co-defendants, including one who is alleged to have hit the victim, are awaiting trial in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.