Burglars jailed for terrorising mother and child

Woman was tied up and had gun pointed at her head

Two members of a gang which terrorised a woman and her three-year-old daughter during a burglary in Co Meath were jailed at Trim Circuit Court on Thursday.

During the ordeal which lasted over an hour a knife was held to the woman’s throat for several minutes while a gun was later pointed at her head.

Dean Fagan(28) Kildare Park, Crumlin, Dublin and Daryl Smith (25), Shancastle Lawns, Clondalkin, Dublin, pleaded guilty to charges of aggravated burglary in May 2014 at Irishtown, Rathfeigh, Co Meath.

The court heard the woman was woken about 11pm when she heard two loud bangs and saw that five men had smashed the front door down and entered the house.

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A garda told prosecuting counsel Carl Hanahoe that one of the gang came upstairs and took the woman’s mobile phone before bringing her downstairs and putting her on a chair with her hands tied with masking tape.

A knife was held to her neck for several minutes while the gang demanded her bank card and PIN number.

The woman gave the gang the card but the incorrect PIN and the wrong directions to the nearest ATM.

Smith left with the card and drove off while the rest of the gang remained ransacking the house.

When he failed to find the ATM Smith drove to Dublin where he crashed at Ballymun before walking to an apartment on Thomas St.

He tried the card in several ATMs on the way before the card was swallowed by an ATM near his home.

The garda said that Smith was identified from CCTV at the ATMs and later arrested.

He admitted his involvement but condemned the violence used, the court heard.

The rest of the gang including Fagan remained at the house stealing items which they loaded into a car.

When they found a safe a gun was pointed at the woman’s head and they demanded the code which she did not know.

By this stage the woman’s daughter had woken up and was terrified, the garda told the court.

The gang then tied the woman up with cable ties to her hands and feet and tights round her eyes and mouth.

They tried to tie up the young girl but she resisted and they eventually gave up and left warning her mother they would be back.

The woman was able to free herself and alert gardaí.

Gardai later came on the gang in Rathmines.

Fagan admitted his involvement when fingerprints found on a piece of paper linked him to the crime.

The court heard the victims are still badly affected by their ordeal, while the woman’s husband who was at work at the time is now afraid of coming home “to another terrifying scene”.

Judge Michael O’Shea jailed Fagan for six years and Smith for five years.