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Monday 18 December 2017

A JUDGE has ordered the arrest of a 38-year-old man charged with taking part in a knife-armed aggravated burglary at the home of an RTE journalist in Dublin.

A JUDGE has ordered the arrest of a 38-year-old man charged with taking part in a knife-armed aggravated burglary at the home of an RTE journalist in Dublin.

The incident is alleged to have happened in the Christchurch area in the city-centre, at the home of Dublin Correspondent John Kilraine in the early hours of December 2 last.

Michael Royal with an address at Benmadigan Road, Drimnagh, was arrested by Kevin Street gardai following the alleged incident.

Mr Royal faces charges of aggravated burglary at John Dillon St while in possession of a knife, theft of Mr Kilraine's car, and two counts of dangerous driving on the morning of December 2 last.

One count of dangerous driving related to an alleged incident at Francis Street in Dublin and the other at nearby Dean Swift Square.

He was due to appear at Dublin District Court yesterday to be served with a book of evidence but did not show up for the hearing.

Judge Cormac Dunne was told by a prosecution lawyer that "we are not anticipating he is going to be here". Judge Dunne agreed to Garda David Houlihan's request to issue a bench warrant for the arrest of Mr Royal.

It had been intended that a book of evidence would be served on him and Judge Dunne was told that it was ready to be handed over. The DPP has directed that the accused man should be tried in the circuit court which has tougher sentencing powers.

The defendant had also been unable to attend the previous court date, last month, because he was then in hospital.

The 54-year-old journalist Mr Kilfraine, who joined the RTE staff in 2003, has been a news reporter for more than 20 years and has been RTE's Dublin correspondent since November 2011.

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