Assault case solicitor donates €1,000
A LIMERICK solicitor has avoided a criminal conviction after paying €1,000 to charity.
John Devane (50), who has a practice at Quinlan Street in Limerick city, appeared before Limerick District Court earlier this month where he denied assaulting fellow Limerick solicitor John Herbert on June 9th, 2011, at Merchants Quay in Limerick.
Having heard the evidence, Judge Patrick Clyne said he had to find in favour of the State and that the facts before him were proven.
However, he said he would not proceed with a conviction and would dismiss the case on its merits if Mr Devane paid €1,000 to St Vincent de Paul by yesterday. State Solicitor Michael Murray objected to Judge Clyne’s decision and told the court he had specific instructions from the Director of Public Prosecutions on the matter.
Mr Murray said, having found the facts proved, Judge Clyne should have either dismissed the matter under the Probation Act or recorded a conviction but struck out the proceedings.
Judge Clyne said his decision was made. During the hearing, the court heard there was a history of dispute between the two men.
In his evidence Mr Devane admitted his relationship with Mr Herbert was “not an amicable one” but insisted he never assaulted his colleague.
Mr Herbert, whose offices are at Arthur’s Quay in Limerick, said Mr Devane caught him by the throat after trying to headbutt him outside courtroom four of Limerick District Court at about 2.30pm on June 9th, 2011.