Teenager found guilty of falsely imprisoning Joan Burton in Jobstown
By Tom Tuite
A STUDENT has been found guilty of false imprisonment of Joan Burton during the Jobstown protest.
The youth (17) denied falsely imprisoning the former Tanaiste and her advisor Karen O’Connell who were allegedly trapped in two garda cars for three hours during the demonstration at the Fortunestown Road in Jobstown in Tallaght, on Nov. 15, 2014. He was aged 15 at the time of the protest.
His trial at the Dublin Children’s Court resumed on Friday morning for Judge John King decide if he was going to throw out the case. The 17-year-old’s legal team contended that it is not accordance with Irish or European human rights laws and that the State has not made out a case to answer.
The Dublin west TD had been at a graduation ceremony at An Cosan education centre when a water protest took place outside. She told the court earlier that she was frightened and did not think she had the alternative of being able to get out of Garda cars surrounded by people shouting abuse and banging on windows.
The teenager had also walked in front of her holding a phone filming her and blocked her while saying “talk to us Joan”, she said.
Last month, the State has closed it’s case and on Tuesday, the boy’s legal team asked Judge John King to dismiss the charges. The boy’s barrister Giollaoisa O Lideadha SC told Judge King that the the case is “unprecedented” and is a “recipe for totalitarianism”.
However, Judge King held that the liberty of the then Tanaiste and her advisor were restricted at numerous stages and the teenager was guilty based on the evidence given to the court.