Backpackers Tokyo

A man charged with a "vicious" assault at Conor McGregor's Dublin pub was wearing a €20,000 watch when arrested by gardaí, a court has heard.

ardaí gave evidence that the complainant was knocked unconscious before being punched and kicked in the head while on the ground outside the Black Forge Inn in Drimnagh.

John Griffiths (37), with an address at Kevin Street in Dublin 8 and Andrew Murray (38), of Downpatrick Road, Crumlin, appeared before Dublin District Court this afternoon charged with assault causing harm at the pub over the weekend. Both men were remanded in custody with consent to bail despite garda objections that they were flight risks.

Gda Claire Young, of Crumlin Garda Station, said that at around 11.55pm on Saturday night the injured party was attacked by two males before being knocked to the ground unconscious.

She said it would be alleged that Mr Griffiths, who resides in California, kicked and punched the man while he was on the ground and that this was captured on good quality CCTV.

The court heard the complainant suffered cuts and bruising during the incident and was currently in hospital awaiting a brain scan.

Gda Young said she did not believe the accused would return to stand trial, saying he has been residing in the US for over ten years where he has family ties.

The garda also said Mr Griffiths had access to finances to leave the jurisdiction and when arrested was wearing expensive designer clothes and a watch valued at approximately €20,000.

Defence counsel Keith Spencer BL submitted his client's fiancée resided in Dublin and that the bail objection was unsustainable as a matter of law.

He also said that it would be an unduly restrictive bail requirement for his client to stay in the jurisdiction as he lived in the US. Judge Michael Walsh granted John Griffiths bail on certain conditions including a €2,000 bond, that he is available on his mobile phone to gardaí, and that he must give gardaí notice when he leaves the jurisdiction including the purpose and destination of travel.

Gda David Costigan, of Sundrive Road Garda Station, said he was objecting to bail being granted to Andrew Murray due to the strength of the evidence and concerns that he will not turn up to stand trial.

He said it would be alleged that Mr Murray was one of two men who knocked the complainant to the ground before he was punched and kicked in the head.


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Andrew Murray of Downpatrick Road, Crumlin

Andrew Murray of Downpatrick Road, Crumlin

Andrew Murray of Downpatrick Road, Crumlin

Andrew Murray of Downpatrick Road, Crumlin

Gda Costigan said that the accused also travels to countries around the world, in particular to Dubai in the UAE, which has no extradition agreement in place with Ireland.

He added that Mr Murray has the resources to flee, and that he was wearing" extremely expensive designer brand" clothing when arrested.

Asked by the defence if the incident was an alleged brawl outside the pub, Gda Costigan said it was an "unprovoked, vicious attack".

The garda also said that it "could have been an awful lot more serious if people hadn't intervened at the time."

He agreed with Mr Spencer that he did not know the genesis of the incident and that the DPP has not yet given directions on the matter.

The defence counsel submitted that there was no evidence provided that his client has "travelled to far flung places".

Judge Walsh granted the accused bail on condition that he enters a bond of €1,000, that he resides at his home address, and that he signs on daily at Sundrive Road Garda Station.

The judge also made it a pre-condition that he surrender his passport and remanded him in custody with consent to bail.

Gda Costigan said that there would also be an objection to legal aid being granted to Andrew Murray, and judge Walsh said this matter could be dealt with at the next sitting.

Both men will next appear in court on Friday, September 10, before Cloverhill District Court.