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Man accused of new crime of strangulation, rape and recording intimate images of a woman

A man is in custody accused of rape, a newly introduced “strangulation” offence, and illegally recording intimate images of a woman in Dublin in recent weeks.

The accused, who is in his 30s and cannot be identified for legal reasons, appeared before Judge Deirdre Gearty at Dublin District Court following an investigation by gardaí based at Store Street station.

The offenses are said to have occurred at a residential address in the city’s north center on several dates over the past month. The man is accused of raping the woman, a crime that, if convicted, could carry a life sentence.

He has also been charged under new laws enacted last year, which create a separate crime of non-fatal strangulation, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years.

In that crime, it is alleged that he, without legal excuse, intentionally strangled the woman, causing her to believe that she was likely to be strangled during an assault.

Additionally, gardaí charged him with recording intimate images without consent, which could seriously interfere with peace and privacy or cause alarm, distress or harm, in contravention of the Harassment, Harmful Communications and Related Offenses Act 2020.

Garda Sean Shields gave evidence of arrest, charges and caution. The man, who has no fixed address, did not speak during the hearing. However, the judge noted that when he was charged at the Garda station, he responded: “I’m sorry for what I did” and “I’m sorry for that.”

Bail

Then the question of bail arose.

The defendant was represented by solicitor Aoife McTaggart, who told Judge Gearty: “we are reserving our position” and the man consented to remain in custody. He was granted legal aid and will appear again next week.

Judge Gearty reminded the media that the “usual reporting restrictions” applied to media coverage of the case. Unless he is found guilty, the accused legally has automatic anonymity, as does the complainant, who maintains that right at all stages.

The charge of recording intimate images also carries reporting restrictions to protect the identity of the alleged victim. Gardaí must be notified before your next hearing if you intend to make a bail application.

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