TWO teenage schoolboys have pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting another teen boy in Dublin.
he pair, in their mid-teens, appeared again at the Dublin Children’s Court for a ruling on their trial venue.
They were charged with sexual assault which allegedly occurred in south Dublin on a date in June last year.
The Director of Public Prosecutions had recommended trial on indictment in the circuit court which can impose lengthier sentences.
Following a preliminary hearing, however, Judge Brendan Toale accepted jurisdiction for the case to remain in the Children’s Court.
The court can do so taking into account defence submissions about age and level of maturity, as well as other relevant factors. It is provided for under section 75 of the Children Act.
Not-guilty pleas were entered and the boys, who were accompanied to court by family members, were remanded on continuing bail. The case will be listed again for mention in March to set a date for the non-jury hearing which will involve evidence given via video-link.
Earlier, Detective Garda Alan Young told the court that the older youth made no reply to charge.
The younger boy’s response to charge was “I’m definitely not guilty”, Detective Garda David McNally told the court.
The Garda Youth Diversion Bureau found the case was not suitable for a juvenile caution.
The boys must not have any contact, directly or indirectly, with the complainant.
Disclosure of prosecution evidence to the boys’ solicitors has already been ordered.
Source: Irish News