Machete attack accused is denied bail

A 19-year-old American student had her skull fractured by a man who walked up behind her and swung a two-foot machete at her head before robbing her.

That was the most serious allegation made during a bail application by Brian Veale, 30, with an address at Dominic St near Shandon in Cork City and originally from Dungarvan, Co Waterford.

Veale is charged with the robbery of the American student at Dominic Street in Cork on February 26.

He faces another charge of attempting to rob a 20-year-old Cork man, who was allegedly struck on the head with a machete moments earlier.

Detective Sergeant Vincent O’Sullivan said gardaí were opposed to bail on grounds that included the seriousness of the alleged offences.

Eddie Burke, defence solicitor, emphasised the presumption of innocence and said Veale was only charged with the offences described.

Inspector Finbarr O’Sullivan accepted that, but said the prosecution was concerned about the seriousness and viciousness of the alleged offences.

Detective Sergeant Vincent O’Sullivan said the level of violence was extreme.

“He is charged with attempted robbery and robbery shortly after one another.

“Firstly it is alleged he followed two men down Dominic St while his face was covered. He was carrying a two-foot machete with an 18-inch blade. With both hands he swung at the head of the unassuming member of the public striking him on the back of the head in an attempt to rob him.

“This injured party subsequently had to get 11 staples to his head wound.

“The injured party ran off after being assaulted. It is alleged the accused then came across a 19-year-old American student and swung at her head, hitting the side of the head.

“She later required three staples and he left her with a fractured skull. He pulled a handbag off her. He dropped the machete and ran down the street. Two members of the public caught him and held on to him [until gardaí arrived].

“It was a very unusual and serious case where the level of violence was extreme. He said in interview that he had a chronic heroin addiction,” Det Sgt O’Sullivan said.

Following this incident, he was brought before a special sitting of Cork District Court on Saturday last and remanded in custody until yesterday where he made his first bail application.

Mr Burke, solicitor, said the defendant was in much better shape in court yesterday as he had been put on a methadone treatment programme in prison to deal with his heroin addiction.

Judge Grainne O’Neill said: “Clearly Mr Veale is having a difficult time of it to put it mildly.” The judge took a number of factors into consideration in refusing bail, including the seriousness of the alleged incidents.

Veale was remanded in custody for a week.

Turning to Insp O’Sullivan who had cross-examined him on his bail application, Veale said at the end of the hearing: “He can stick his bail up his hole, he’d want to get his facts straight.”


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