The lawyer for a teenage boy, accused of the murder and aggravated sexual assault of Anastasia Kriegel, has asked the jury to consider if there is any “real evidence” that his client had planned “any of this at all”.
Patrick Gageby SC, defending Boy A, further asked the jury in his closing speech if there was “any solid or real evidence” in the case of his client’s intention to kill or his intention to kill Ana Kriegel.
“Has any witness from the witness box given evidence that [Boy A] ever said he wanted to kill anyone or Ana?” Mr Gageby asked.
Mr Gageby has finished giving his closing speech to the eight men and four women of the jury at the Central Criminal Court.
The accused, who are both 14, cannot be named because they are minors. They have each pleaded not guilty to murdering the 14-year-old Kildare schoolgirl at Glenwood House, Laraghcon, Clonee Road, Lucan on May 14 last year.
Boy A is further charged with Ana's aggravated sexual assault in a manner that involved serious violence to her. He has pleaded not guilty to that count also.
Addressing the court this morning, Mr Gageby said he was not going to tell the jury what verdict they should reach as this was a matter for them. He asked the jurors to recognise that young people, particularly teenagers, are immature.
Going through the evidence in the trial, Mr Gageby said that Ana died in “demeaning circumstances” and her parents had shown “enormous grace” since the beginning of the trial. Ana came from a “very happy home” and everything a child could have wanted was provided for her, he outlined.
He acknowledged that everyone has the greatest of sympathies for the Kriegel family. “We also recognise the terrible effect on the parents of a 13-year-old child who has been brought to trial for such serious offences,” Mr Gageby said.
The barrister pointed out that his client’s family are just like the rest of their community, calling them “hard-working and decent people”. This is not a house which gardaí would have called to or where children would have been known for anti-social behaviour or petty vandalism, he said.
It is the prosecution case that Boy A is guilty of the murder and aggravated sexual assault of Ana Kriegel due to the "overwhelming forensic case" against him.
In his closing speech last Friday, prosecution counsel Brendan Grehan SC said that semen matching Boy A's DNA was found on Ana's top at the scene.
DNA matching Boy A was also found on Ana's neck and on the insulating tape around her neck. Counsel further pointed out that blood matching Ana's DNA was found on Boy A's boots, on a backpack found in a wardrobe in his bedroom and on a mask, gloves and knee pads found inside the backpack.
Mr Grehan described Boy A's interviews, in which he told gardaí he was not in the abandoned house, as being like a child who has eaten the biscuits and has "chocolate all around the mouth and they are still saying they didn't do it."
Damien Colgan SC has begun addressing the jury on behalf of Boy B.