A man accused of robbery, theft and unlawfully obtaining a motor vehicle in the Republic and being in possession of the vehicle in the North, has been remanded in custody after appearing at Derry Magistrate’s Court yesterday.
James Donegan (28) was charged with the offences following a series of alleged incidents last Friday and Saturday. An investigating officer told the court how police received a report of a Volkswagen Passat clipping another vehicle after approaching a roundabout on the Buncrana Road at around 11.10 p.m. on Friday. Police received a further report of a Volkswagen Golf being obtained unlawfully on the Carrick Bridge Road 10 minutes later before being driven back in the direction of the North. This car was later found abandoned in Old City Court, where police received a report of a confrontation in a house after two intruders were reported to have entered as trespassers before allegedly attempting to steal a camera and mobile phone, the officer said. The court heard police further received a report of a robbery near the Quarry Steps on Spencer Road and that an alleged female injured party, provided a description of the suspect, saying he had been wearing a grey tracksuit and had a gash on his head.
The court heard Donegan was arrested in Bridge Street having matched this description.
His defence solicitor Keith Kyle, applying for bail, noted that, at interview, his client had made no admissions to what were ‘serious allegations’.
He noted his co-accused had been granted police bail and suggested that had it not been for the fact that his client was on prison licence following a conviction for aggravated vehicle taking, he would also have been granted bail.
He also suggested the prosecution’s case would be largely based on identification and forensics and it would thus take some time to come to trial.
District Judge Oonagh Mullan, refused bail, however, and remanded Donegan in custody to appear again via video link on June 22, having deemed him a flight risk, and noted his 83 previous convictions.