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Video nasty Man accused of harassing Fine Gael TD allegedly sent her three sexually explicit videos

Mr Culhane is further alleged to have sent the TD a number of images of herself, which he had found online.

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Fine Gael TD Jennifer Carroll MacNeill was allegedly harassed by the man last year

Fine Gael TD Jennifer Carroll MacNeill was allegedly harassed by the man last year

Fine Gael TD Jennifer Carroll MacNeill was allegedly harassed by the man last year

A MAN accused of harassing Fine Gael TD, Jennifer Carroll MacNeill, sent her three sexually explicit videos as well as numerous text messages with kisses and emojis, it has been alleged.

Gerard Culhane (43) allegedly told the TD that he was the man in the videos, but they had been taken from an adult porn site, a court heard.

Mr Culhane is further alleged to have sent the TD a number of images of herself, which he had found online.

He is facing trial by judge and jury in the circuit court after a district court judge refused jurisdiction of the allegation.

Judge Ann Watkins adjourned the case to a date in October for the service of the book of evidence.

The accused, of Marian Place, Glin, Co Limerick, is charged with harassing the Fine Gael TD on dates between January 13, 2020 and March 26, 2020.

He was excused from appearing before Dun Laoghaire District Court today.

The court heard the DPP had directed summary trial in the district court.

Outlining the allegation for jurisdiction purposes, Detective Sergeant Rachael Kilpatrick alleged Mr Culhane sent 19 communications to the TD via Facebook Messenger.

These included three videos of a man performing a sex act on himself and a number of pictures of Ms Carroll MacNeill, which he had found online.

Sgt Kilpatrick alleged Mr Culhane also sent 14 texts to Ms Carroll MacNeill which included general conversation about events the TD was attending as well as emojis and kisses.

Judge Watkin said the allegation sounded relatively harmless if not for the videos, and she was not inclined to accept jurisdiction.

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Defence lawyer Robert Crawley said it was not the accused in the videos, but they had been taken from adult porn sites.

Judge Watkin said the videos were not the defendant but he allegedly said they were.

She said she believed that if someone was sent those videos, it would not just be upsetting, but there would be a fear of what a person might do. She said she believed the fear it would have created would have been huge, and she refused jurisdiction.

Sgt Kilpatrick previously told a court that in reply to the charge after caution Mr Culhane said "no, I accept the charge".

As part of his bail conditions, Mr Culhane must sign on once a week at his local garda station. He must have no contact with the alleged victim or any witnesses in the case.

Mr Culhane has not yet indicated a plea to the charge.

Ms Carroll MacNeill was elected as a TD in Dun Laoghaire in February 2020. She is the Vice Chair of the Fine Gael Parliamentary Party and its Spokesperson for Equality.

She was selected internally by the Fine Gael branch in Dun Laoghaire to replace former TD Maria Bailey on the ticket for the general election in 2020, following "Swinggate", a controversy revolving a legal claim made by Ms Bailey that resulted in her subsequent deselection.

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