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SuperDave84 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 5:40pm
Originally posted by rossieman rossieman wrote:

Superdave,
in the US dont they give consecutive lifes entences ?
Say 2 25 year sentences and when they finish the first or get parole they then start the second one .

That lad in Athlone had all those convictions mostly do to with anti social behavior and theft.he was in court around this time last year ,telling the judge he had a drink problem and seeking help.Think he was up that time for fighting with girlfriend or fiance .


They also give 150 year sentences to people old enough to be pensioners (Bernie Madoff). I'm not sure I'd be looking to follow their lead, somehow. You can get consecutive sentences here, but not on life. He could have been given 25 years on one, then 25 years on the other, consecutively, but usually there has to be a reason for consecutive sentences beyond simply seeking to extend punishment. For instance, two separate and distinct offences could attract consecutive sentences (say the assaults had taken place a week apart) or committing an offence while on bail or while under a suspended sentence - something like that. I mean, I know what this guy did was deplorable (the worst imaginable, I've never seen anything quite so deplorable, not even the systemic stuff over a number of years - that doesn't have the same level of life-altering violence) but that alone doesn't necessarily justify imposing consecutive sentences. Plus, you have to remember he pleaded guilty. I think, regardless of the circumstances of the case, it had to count for something. I mean, the alternative might have been 30 years on one charge, with a consecutive sentence of the same on the other, had he fought the charges and been convicted, which would effectively have been a 45 year sentence (you get 1/4 off in remission), as opposed to the likely 30 to 40 years he'll serve now.

Remember also that the maximum sentence on the statute books is for capital murder. It used to be the death penalty but then it was amended to not less than 40 years, which is effectively 30. You still get a life sentence for capital murder (murder of an on-duty garda, murder of on-duty prison officer, murder for the purposes of an offence against the state, murder of a foreign head of state / government official etc for political purposes) but you are mandated to serve a minimum of 40 years (with remission, 30). Bearing that in mind, and seeing as that is the worst offence on the statute books, based on the sentence the legislature have provided, I don't see that it would have been right in principle to give this lad a sentence of over 40 years definitive (notwithstanding that a life sentence was probably the right thing, seeing as he can still apply for parole).

The sentence he has won't see him out til he is at least 60, probably 70, in any event.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rossieman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 5:46pm
fair play Superdave.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote corkery Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 6:16pm
Would he not appeal it because of his guilty plea?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 6:22pm
Originally posted by corkery corkery wrote:

Would he not appeal it because of his guilty plea?


Like I said, he might.... and he might well do better on appeal and it might go all the way to the Supreme Court. If he loses in the Court of Criminal Appeal (that is, if they uphold Carney J.'s sentence, of which there is no guarantee, as they have had their run ins before), I think there is a question of exceptional public importance to be asked: where you plead guilty to an offence that does not have a mandatory life sentence, is the sentencing court still entitled to impose one? I don't know (off the top of my head) if that question has been asked before.... we'll see, I suppose.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote greengiant Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 7:00pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ShayGivensBum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 9:28pm
Thanks. You've a great way of explaining things.

I take what you are saying about the way convictions can accumulate but his previous convictions were for more serious things than the ones mentioned and 100 in 12 years surely he should have been given a lengthy sentence at some stage? In my opinion as a result of this lunatic not recieving substantial sentences for his past crimes, two girls lives effectively being ruined. Him showing that he has no regard for the law 100 times over has of stood for something?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Mar 2014 at 10:51pm
Originally posted by ShayGivensBum ShayGivensBum wrote:

Thanks. You've a great way of explaining things.

I take what you are saying about the way convictions can accumulate but his previous convictions were for more serious things than the ones mentioned and 100 in 12 years surely he should have been given a lengthy sentence at some stage? In my opinion as a result of this lunatic not recieving substantial sentences for his past crimes, two girls lives effectively being ruined. Him showing that he has no regard for the law 100 times over has of stood for something?



Well, he may have had longer sentences - for the likes of burglary, maybe. Chances are, though, all bar a couple were for public order offences, especially if he has a drink problem. He probably also had a few bench warrants and convictions for failing to attend court, maybe a couple of road traffic, but absolutely nothing like this.

Incidentally, where did you hear he has over 100 previous? I haven't seen that anywhere.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote rossieman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 12:02am
He had 74  convictions when he was in court around this time last year .Half were for public order offences.




Edited by rossieman - 05 Mar 2014 at 12:05am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 12:13am
Actually, found out a bit more about his previous:

From the mirror:
Originally posted by The mirror The mirror wrote:

He has more than 70 previous convictions including criminal damage, assault, robbery and possession of knives and he had just been released from Castlerea Prison three days before the offences.

And from the BBC:
Originally posted by The BBC The BBC wrote:

He has a large number of previous convictions for a range of offences including public order, intoxication, criminal damage, burglary and had been given a number of short sentences, the longest of which was six months.

He may never have been in the Circuit Court before, if he never had a sentence of longer than six months. That's a bit of a surprise given that he has burglary, robbery AND assault previous but not massive. He obviously has a serious drink problem and that was probably the reason for most of his previous, but if he had never been in the Circuit Court, then it would be no surprise if he never got longer than a six month sentence. Anyway, it seems he had about 70-odd, but like I said, a lot of those could come from one or two incidents: he may have taken out a knife and robbed a shop, there's two or three convictions, he obviously has quite a few public order, they rack up very quickly, and, like everyone with that many convictions, he probably has a few road traffic offences that aren't worth reporting.

Anyway, let's hope he isn't out of prison this side of 2050.

Edit: just saw rossieman's post. 74, half for public order.... pretty much what I guessed.


Edited by SuperDave84 - 05 Mar 2014 at 12:17am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 12:24am
I mean, for example:

Section 4 of the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act 1994:

"4.(1) It shall be an offence for any person to be present in any public place while intoxicated to such an extent as would give rise to a reasonable apprehension that he might endanger himself or any other person in his vicinity."

Section 6:

6.(1) It shall be an offence for any person in a public place to use or engage in any threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour with intent to provoke a breach of the peace or being reckless as to whether a breach of the peace may be occasioned.

Section 8:

8.—(1) Where a member of the Garda Síochána finds a person in a public place and suspects, with reasonable cause, that such person—

                (a) is or has been acting in a manner contrary to the provisions of section 4 , 5 , 6 , 7 or 9 , or

                (b) without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, is acting in a manner which consists of loitering in a public place in circumstances, which may include the company of other persons, that give rise to a reasonable apprehension for the safety of persons or the safety of property or for the maintenance of the public peace,

the member may direct the person so suspected to do either or both of the following, that is to say:

(i) desist from acting in such a manner, and

(ii) leave immediately the vicinity of the place concerned in a peaceable or orderly manner.

(2) It shall be an offence for any person, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, to fail to comply with a direction given by a member of the Garda Síochána under this section.

Section 9:

9.Any person who, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse, wilfully prevents or interrupts the free passage of any person or vehicle in any public place shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £200.

Section 19(3):

(3) Any person who resists or wilfully obstructs a peace officer acting in the execution of his duty or a person assisting a peace officer in the execution of his duty, knowing that he is or being reckless as to whether he is, a peace officer acting in the execution of his duty, shall be guilty of an offence.




So, basically, if you stand in the road, yelling obscenities, while drunk, in the direction of the Gardai (say you stand in front of a patrol car at closing time, cursing at them, pissed, and don't move when they tell you to), that's potentially five separate offences under the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act. That's why lads end up with seemingly ridiculous numbers of previous convictions whereas, in fact, they might not actually have so many. If it is true more than half of his previous are for public order, I'd guess that stems from between 10 and 20 incidents of him being pissed and acting the maggot.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hans Moleman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 1:42am
SuperD, I was reading on other forums that even though this lad was giving a life sentence, on average this is just 17 years long. Is that accurate? It really would be sickening if someone who committed such a crime could be out after such a short time.

Are you training to be a solicitor SuperD? I only ask because I wanted to put another question to you. Over the last few years there seems to have been an awful lot of serious assault/ rape cases where the sentences given to the perpetrator are very lenient in my opinion. Is this to do with a lack of prison space or laws not fit for their purpose sometimes or other reasons?
"I called him an embarrassment to FIFA and to himself," .... He said 'No-one speaks to me like that'.... and I said, "well I do' and that was that."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 2:11am
Originally posted by Hans Moleman Hans Moleman wrote:

SuperD, I was reading on other forums that even though this lad was giving a life sentence, on average this is just 17 years long. Is that accurate? It really would be sickening if someone who committed such a crime could be out after such a short time.

Are you training to be a solicitor SuperD? I only ask because I wanted to put another question to you. Over the last few years there seems to have been an awful lot of serious assault/ rape cases where the sentences given to the perpetrator are very lenient in my opinion. Is this to do with a lack of prison space or laws not fit for their purpose sometimes or other reasons?


I'm actually a practising lawyer - I won't say where and I won't say which one of the professions but I do a bit of criminal work and a bit of civil work too.

Yes, an *average* life sentence is 17 years, but that doesn't mean everyone gets out in 17 years.... like I said earlier, people who flip and kill their partners (husbands or wives) will generally get out sooner, as will lads who were maybe addicts and murdered someone on higher command to clear a drug debt (well, if they get demonstrably clean), whereas anyone higher up, who murdered for a gangland turf or retribution purpose, or anyone with more serious offences (like Malcolm McArthur, who served over 30 years), premeditated murder and rape and the like, will generally serve longer sentences - it depends on rehabilitation and stuff like that. This lad will get something closer to McArthur's than the average, put it like that.

The reason for the apparent leniency in some sexual assault cases (the Fiona Doyle one springs to mind) is generally due to the appearance and health issues of the accused. If you have a 70 year old man, who is little harm to anyone now, even if he horribly abused someone for years many years previous, even though the victim has only recently gained the courage to speak out, it serves little purpose to put someone like that in jail, at least not for an extended period, as it generally serves limited enough purpose. Also, the media don't necessarily tend to report every rape and murder trial the same. A case where a girlfriend complains that her boyfriend raped her, made shortly after the offence, where a 15 year sentence is given, won't necessarily attract the same level of media attention as a case like this or a case like the Fiona Doyle one.

Most opinion polls I've seen (and they are rare, and to some extent the public data is lacking in this country) show that, in general, people think that average sentences handed down for certain categories of crime are actually lower than they are. That's an entirely different issue, admittedly, and like I've said many times before the reason longer sentences don't work is because criminals think they will get away with crimes: if you increase the risk of detection rather than just the severity of punishment, then crimes will go down - also, from a principled point of view it is better than ten guilty men serve one year in prison each for a crime, rather than having one man serve a ten year sentence for the same crime while 90% go free, simply to send a "message" to criminals that they will be punished when Lord knows that doesn't work, and when they know they are unlikely to be caught. Of course, there is also the old line that it is better for ten guilty men to go free than for one innocent man to be punished (which is why criminal cases work on the burden of "beyond reasonable doubt" rather than just on the balance of probabilities) but to some extent it is a corollary of that: why should one person be harshly punished for the sins of others? Why should some guilty people serve long sentences when others aren't caught? Where is the justice in that? The criminal justice system should be fair, it shouldn't be a lottery.


Edited by SuperDave84 - 05 Mar 2014 at 2:15am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hans Moleman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 2:26am
Practising lawyer, fair play SuperD.

Cheers for the response. I have always had an interest in reading the court cases/crimes in the media - as you said though, obviously an awful lot of stuff going through the courts will never be reported so a lay man like myself is probably drawing unfair conclusions on sentences being handed down.

Would very much agree with you regarding detection. This is why I find it incredible in the last few years to see the Garda force number frozen. Also with the number of early retirements of senior gardai under the current government, crazy situation really.

In terms of what judges hand down SuperD, there was a case I read awhile back. The lad walked free. How is this possible, would this be overturned on appeal? Would the judge be dealt with later? This case just stuck in my head for some reason, found it startling that anyone could walk out of a court room free after this!!!

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/courts/teacher-weeps-in-court-as-her-attacker-walks-free-29783407.html
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 2:36am
The judge will face no sanction whatsoever. The matter can be appealed by the DPP on the basis that the sentence was "unduly lenient" and it may result in the quashing of the sentence and the issue of a new sentence, but in terms of professional sanction, the judge will face no sanction or reprimand or anything like that. The issue on appeal is that there has to be a real reason and error in principle: like the judge not taking into account something he should have or taking into account something he shouldn't have, all based on what he said while passing sentence. The DPP may well be appealing that, but there's no quick or easy way to find out, and if they are, it will be some time before it is heard, due to some serious delays in the Court of Criminal Appeal. In terms of professional sanction for the judge, though, no, the quashing of the sentence is the only thing that may be done.

However, the other thing to be remembered in a case like that is that, as a security guard, your man is losing his PSA licence and won't be able to work as a security guard any more and that is very definitely a factor the court has to consider in favour of a degree of leniency, along with the lack of previous convictions. The other issue is that a suspended sentence no longer means walking free (in practice, it often used to, until about eight years ago, due to a legislation change, and the case now having to be sent back to the original court by the new court before passing sentence, rather than relying on the prosecution filing paperwork to have the matter listed again in front of the original court). If the Gardai do their job (and in most cases, they do), if he shows up in court again in the next three years for anything even remotely similar (basically, anything other than road traffic, likely), he will go back to the original judge and will go to jail. It's a lenient sentence, yes, but not entirely without reason.


Edited by SuperDave84 - 05 Mar 2014 at 2:40am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hans Moleman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 2:40am
Cheers SuperD Thumbs Up Just a case that stuck in my mind awhile back.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ShayGivensBum Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 9:18am
ClapClapClapClap

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In a hypothetical sense what would someone have to do in Ireland to go to jail and never ever get out again? 

Remember those two lads in Mayo that kidnapped that girl, held her for a few days and then disposed of her body in a lake, I cant remember their names at the moment it was prob about 40 years ago at this stage. They were in jail for a long long time, they could still be in there now or dead, I am not sure. I am assuming they were given life sentences also but they served a hell of a lot longer than 17 years?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 Mar 2014 at 1:33pm
Originally posted by ShayGivensBum ShayGivensBum wrote:

ClapClapClapClap

Gwan the SD Clap

In a hypothetical sense what would someone have to do in Ireland to go to jail and never ever get out again? 

Remember those two lads in Mayo that kidnapped that girl, held her for a few days and then disposed of her body in a lake, I cant remember their names at the moment it was prob about 40 years ago at this stage. They were in jail for a long long time, they could still be in there now or dead, I am not sure. I am assuming they were given life sentences also but they served a hell of a lot longer than 17 years?


http://www.irishexaminer.com/viewpoints/columnists/michael-clifford/jailed-garda-killers-have-paid-their-debt-225573.html

Evans and Shaw? Sentenced in 1976. One died in prison in 2012 and the other is "unlikely to ever be released" (split infinitive, sic). Guessing it might have been them from this article:

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news/serial-killer-who-pledged-to-rape-and-murder-one-woman-a-week-dies-at-69-26856022.html.

Long and short of it, if you deserve it, you'll get a hefty sentence. The Athlone rapist will be in prison for thirty years or more, make no mistake.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SuperDave84 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09 Mar 2014 at 3:00pm
Incidentally, there is more on that Athlone rapist's previous convictions and history here. Quotes:
Originally posted by The Irish Times The Irish Times wrote:

His early life

A surprising feature of the case was that the rapist had no sexual convictions, despite a record stretching to 88 offences and having spent much of his adult life in prison.

“He went from what you would call zero to 100 on the scale and for no clear reason,” said one source of the inexplicable escalation in his criminality.

Although the man has 88 previous offences, gardaí say he is not a career criminal. “He’s an alcoholic, and virtually every single one of his crimes has drink at the centre of it. He doesn’t really carry out crimes to enrich himself,” said one source.



Edited by SuperDave84 - 09 Mar 2014 at 3:01pm
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