Shamed boxer O’Reilly appears in court on public order charges

Michael O'Reilly arrives at Thurles District Court yesterday. Picture: Don Moloney/Press 22

International boxer Michael O’Reilly is facing three charges under the Public Order Act and more criminal charges may yet follow, a court has been told.

The boxer, who left the Olympics in Rio after failing a drugs test which was carried out before he travelled to Brazil, was in Thurles district court yesterday in relation to allegations which relate to an incident in the Thurles area last April.

The court heard a bench warrant had to be issued for Mr O’Reilly’s arrest in May when he did not appear in court to answer the charges.

Mr O’Reilly, aged 23, of Mountrath, Laois, is charged with being intoxicated in a public place; engaging in abusive, insulting or threatening behaviour; and failing to comply with the directions of a garda.

The offences are alleged to have occurred at Ballybeg, Littleton, Co Tipperary, on April 18.

The case was adjourned until December after gardaí told the court a decision had yet to be made on whether more charges will be laid against Mr O’Reilly.

The boxer was in court yesterday wearing blue denim jeans and a pale blue shirt. He was not called upon to speak during the short hearing and did not comment to the media outside the courthouse.

His solicitor, JJ Fitzgerald, told Judge Elizabeth McGrath that the defendant was “anxious that the case be dealt with”.

Sergeant Declan O’Carroll said there are “possibly further charges” and it was a matter where there were “several arrests” at the time and “other allegations from one side”.

“A file is almost ready. We’ll be seeking the DPP’s directions overall,” he said.

“So there may be further charges pending?” Judge McGrath asked.

“Possibly,” the sergeant said, before applying for an adjournment until December.

Judge McGrath asked if the sergeant was satisfied there will be a “clearer picture” by then on whether there are to be further charges and was told there will. She agreed to adjourn the case until December 6.

“If, in the meantime, it’s clarified that no further charges are being proffered, the statements should be sent to [solicitor] Mr Fitzgerald in the meantime.”

She was aware that the matter went back to April but reminded the defence solicitor that the case was listed in May. “You client was not here. A bench warrant had to be issued. Your client has lost time on his own.” Mr Fitzgerald said there was “a very good reason” for his client’s non-appearance in May.

The judge said she will “require a statement of means” in relation to Mr O’Reilly.


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