Gardaí “have major concerns” as three men face charges over violent rioting in Finglas

Three men have been charged with violent disorder after a large group of people allegedly holding knives and pitchforks gathered in the center of Finglas yesterday afternoon.

Len Ward, 29, his brother Eric O’Driscoll, 20, and Darragh Collopy, 18, were seen on CCTV footage of Gardai arresting them last night, a court heard.

Investigating officers refused bail, with a Garda saying they have “major concerns about what is happening in the area”.

Judge Conal Gibbons granted conditional bail and the men were remanded in custody to appear in Blanchardstown District Court in October.

Mr Ward, of Deanstown Way, Mr O’Driscoll, Deanstown Green, and Mr Collopy, Cardiffsbridge Avenue, all of Finglas, appeared before Dublin District Court this morning charged with violent crimes.

The incident is said to have happened shortly before 5 p.m. on August 9.

Garda Ciaran Moloney told a bail hearing for the men that at 4.55pm yesterday Gardai received numerous reports of a group of men standing at the junction of Cardiffsbridge Road and Deanstown Green.

Gda Moloney said there were reports the group had knives and pitchforks and “there was even a mention of a firearm”.

The court heard that Gardai were going to the scene, and the large gathering began to disperse.

Gda Moloney said officers looked at CCTV footage and the three men outside the court were arrested and charged.

Gda Moloney refused bail for Mr Collopy, saying Gardai have “major concerns about what is happening in the area”.

Detective Garda Sean Kelly refused bail for Mr Ward, saying Gardai were concerned witnesses could be disturbed as there may be other people involved who have not yet been arrested or questioned.

As part of objecting to Mr O’Driscoll’s bail, Garda Dwayne O’Brien claimed he looked at CCTV and identified Mr O’Driscoll as being in possession of a gun at the time of the incident.

Judge Gibbons said the men had “a presumption of bail” that people would be released on bail for murder and there was no way he could refuse bail.

The judge remanded Mr Collopy on bail equal to his own bail of €200. As part of his bail conditions, he must reside at his home address and not interact with his co-defendant, either directly or through social media.

Mr Collopy was also ordered not to be in Cardiffsbridge Road, Finglas.

Regarding brothers Mr. Ward and Mr. O’Driscoll, defense attorney Garrett Casey BL asked that their bail conditions “for specific reasons not be read.” He told the court Gardai were aware of these reasons.

Gda Kelly objected to Mr Ward being given free legal aid, telling the court Gardai believe “this man has assets and can afford his own lawyer”.

Judge Gibbons deferred free legal aid for Mr Ward and Mr O’Driscoll pending a sworn statement of funds and bank account details.

The judge adjourned the case to a date in October to give DPP instructions on the charges. Gardaí “have major concerns” as three men face charges over violent rioting in Finglas

Fry Electronics Team

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