herald

Saturday 19 October 2019

Stokes in 'no-show' over alleged assault on Paddy's weekend

Anthony Stokes was allegedly involved in a serious assault
Anthony Stokes was allegedly involved in a serious assault

Gardai are pressing ahead with their plans to prosecute footballer Anthony Stokes for an alleged serious assault, despite the player failing to attend a meeting with them.

Officers have been seeking to speak with the former Irish international in relation to an assault on a 23-year-old man in a packed Temple Bar pub over the St Patrick's weekend, but he has failed to provide a statement.

A file is expected to be sent to the DPP in the coming weeks by Pearse Street gardai without any input from the footballer.

Warrant

"He was given the opportunity to give his side of events in that pub on March 16, but he did not keep his appointment with gardai," a senior source told the Herald.

"In recent weeks he was given another chance, but didn't present himself to gardai. The file on this case will be sent to the DPP without his input.

"He missed the opportunity to give his account, and if the DPP decides that there should be a prosecution in the case and Mr Stokes remains outside the country, gardai will get a European Arrest Warrant for him.

"This is a serious assault case which is very likely to end up in the Circuit Court."

Stokes (31) is no stranger to Dublin Circuit Court, where he was given a two-year suspended sentence in February 2017 for head-butting a man in his 50s in the VIP lounge of a Dublin nightclub in June, 2013.

He pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to part-time Elvis impersonator Anthony Bradley at Buck Whaley's on Leeson Street.

Stokes' latest brush with gardai relates to an incident last March when an English man was knocked unconscious after being head-butted in the face.

Gardai were called to the pub and the injured man was taken by ambulance to St James's Hospital, where he was treated overnight before being discharged.

No arrests have yet been made in the case, but gardai have obtained good quality CCTV.

"Gardai were able to make contact with Mr Stokes and he gave an undertaking to meet them, but this did not happen," the source said.

''The case will now progress to the next stage."

The former Celtic, Sunderland and Hibernian striker now plays in Turkey with second div-ision outfit Adana Demirspor after he left a club in the Iranian league during the summer.

Earlier this month, Stokes was given an eight-month deferred sentence for stalking his ex-partner in Scotland.

He star was also ordered to stay away from her and her mother.

Hamilton Sheriff Court heard he recognised his behaviour towards the pair was "horrendous".

Sheriff Alasdair MacFadyen, nevertheless, warned Stokes he was concerned about his attitude towards his "abusive" conduct.

Messages

For this reason, he also imposed four-year non-harassment orders, meaning Stokes must not contact the two women for that period, apart from when arranging contact with the two-year-old son he has with his ex-girlfriend.

He had pleaded guilty at a previous hearing to stalking Eilidh Scott and her mother, May Scott, between July last year and last February.

The court had previously been told that Stokes had sent around 100 messages a day and had turned up at May Scott's home in Shotts, Lanarkshire, late at night when Eilidh Scott was staying there.

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