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16/09/2021

Judge releases Derry man on bail on the condition that he puts £10 into his electricity meter

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A 27-year-old man was released on bail from Derry Magistrates Court on condition that he tops up his electricity meter. The condition was imposed by District Judge Barney McElholm on Stephen Harkin. The defendant, who had previously been on court bail charged with assault and disorderly behaviour at Waterloo Street last June, appeared at a special court sitting last Saturday. Following that appearance, he was released on bail with the added condition that he must observe a curfew. A prosecution solicitor told the court that when members of G4S went to install the monitoring equipment in the defendant's flat during his curfew hours, the defendant was not present. The G4S staff called at the address the following day, again during the curfew hours, and the defendant again was not present. Applying for bail, defence solicitor Paddy McGurk said the reason why the defendant had breached his curfew conditions was that he hadn't any money to put into his electricity meter so he stayed elsewhere. Mr McGurk added that the defendant was currently in possession of £10 which, if granted bail, he would put into his electricity meter. Judge McElholm released the defendant on bail and told him to go home immediately and put the £10 into the meter. He also ordered the defendant to keep the meter topped up and said if he failed to keep the meter topped up he would consider that to be another breach of bail and the defendant would be remanded into immediate custody.

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