Actor set to ‘strongly contest’ assault claim

Actor David Murray is set to "strongly" contest an allegation that he assaulted a woman in Dublin last year, a judge heard yesterday.

The actor, who plays the late minister for finance Brian Lenihan in a new film, has pleaded not guilty to attacking a woman in a flat in the city’s southside and he appeared again at Dublin District Court yesterday for his trial date to be set.

The 44-year-old stars in The Guarantee, a dramatic recreation of the events leading to the night in September 2008 when a decision was made that Ireland would bail out toxic financial institutions at a cost of billions. The film is showing in selected cinemas until Christmas.

Last week, Mr Murray, who also had a major role in the hit TV series Amber, had appeared at Dublin District Court to face a single charge under section 2 of the Non Fatal Offences Against the Persons Act.

The Cork-born actor is accused of assaulting a named female, at a flat, in Grosvenor Square, in Rathmines, in south Dublin. The offence is alleged to have occurred on October 5 last year.

Defence solicitor Matthew De Courcy had then told the court that there was a “not guilty plea” and he asked for a hearing date in the new year to be set.

The district court trial will last about an hour and it was expected that there would be “one or two witnesses” but no CCTV evidence would be used, the lawyer had said.

The case had been adjourned until yesterday for the date for the full hearing to be set.

When his name was called, the actor, dressed in a blazer and jeans, stood up and came forward but remained silent during the proceedings.

Judge Gráinne O’Neill gave a February 9 trial date and Garda Andrew Dunne, prosecuting, said that was suitable.

Mr De Courcy consented and he also confirmed to the judge that his client was present and “will be strongly defending the charge”.

No evidence relating to the allegation has been given so far in the proceedings.

The assault charge is a summary offence which, on conviction, can result in a possible fine and/or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six months.

Murray starred in the TV mini-series Amber playing a distraught father who became increasingly desperate in his attempts to trace his missing 14-year-old daughter. Set in Dublin, the series aired in Ireland over four consecutive nights, Sunday 19 to Wednesday 22 January 2014, on RTÉ One with nearly a million people tuning in for the finale.

The programme was also broadcast in a number of countries.

He is also known for his appearances in blockbuster films, including Batman Begins, GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra and King Arthur, as well as a Dublin Airport Authority advertisement for Terminal 2.


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