Sunday 23 October 2016

Woman (57) charged with making indecent phone calls to Aras an Uachtarain and the Dail

Anne Fennell Pic: Courts Collins.
Anne Fennell Pic: Courts Collins.

A DUBLIN woman has been charged with making indecent phone calls to Aras an Uachtarain and Dail Eireann.

Anne Fennell (57) is facing trial on 22 separate counts of making either obscene or nuisance calls to the President’s residence, Leinster House, Government offices, and other locations in Dublin and Co Tipperary.

She had the case against her adjourned at Dublin District Court for the preparation of a book of evidence.

Ms Fennell, with an address at Monastery Gate Green, Clondalkin was remanded on continuing bail on the charges, on condition she has no contact with any member of the Oireachtas or with Aras an Uachtarain.

She is charged with nine counts of sending a telephone message that was “grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character” at Aras an Uachtarain.

Ms Fennell is charged with single counts of  the same offence at Dail Eireann; Bishops Square, Redmond’s Hill, Dublin 2 and Philipsburgh Avenue, Marino.

She is further charged with 10 counts of sending a false message by telephone for the purpose of “causing annoyance, inconvenience, or needless anxiety” to named alleged victims.

These offences were alleged to have happened once at the Dail, once at the Department of Finance and at An Post, Oak Road, Dublin 12; twice at Bank Street, Templemore, Co Tipperary; twice at the European Commission Representation, Dawson Street  and three times at Summerhill, Nenagh, Co Tipperary.

The offences are alleged to have happened on dates between March 2013 and November 2014.

The court heard some of the charges against the accused were brought previously, while some were new. Of the new counts, several gardai gave evidence of arresting the defendant and cautioning her before the court.

In reply, she either made no reply or said: “no comment.”

State Solicitor Tom Conlon said the DPP was directing trial on indictment. This means the case is to be sent to Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, which has greater potential sentencing powers on conviction than the District Court.

He asked Judge Michael Walsh to adjourn the case for six weeks.

Under bail conditions, she must also sign on twice weekly at Clondalkin Garda Station and provide gardai with a mobile phone number. Bail was set in her own bond of €500, with no cash lodgement required.

She was granted free legal aid after her solicitor Amanda Connolly said Fennell was not working.

The defendant, who has not yet indicated how she intends to plead to the charges, did not address the court during the hearing.

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