Áras Attracta worker to plead guilty to assault

Five other care staff at HSE-run facility pleading not guilty to single charge of assault

One of six HSE employees who featured in undercover video footage shot for RTÉ's Primetime is to plead guilty to three charges of assault on elderly residents at the Áras Attracta care home in Swinford, Co Mayo.

The full facts of the assaults committed by Joan Gill (62), Dublin Road, Swinford, will be outlined to Judge Mary Devins at a sitting of the District Court in the New Year. Ms Gill will then be sentenced.

Five other care staff at the HSE-run facility – Pat McLoughlin, Lalibella, Mayfield, Claremorris; Anna Ywunong Bostimbo, Lowpark Avenue, Charlestown; Kathleen King, Knockshanbally, Straide, Foxford; Christine Delaney, Lissatava, Hollymount; and Joan Walsh, Carrowilkeen, Curry, Co Sligo – are all pleading not guilty to a single charge of assault.

They will be tried at a special district court sitting, in the Castlebar court complex, on January 4th-8th, 2016.


Extensive video evidence will shown the trials of the five accused who are pleading not guilty.

Some 190 hours of video footage was filmed covertly in November, 2014 in Bungalow 3 of the Áras Attracta complex in Swinford, Co Mayo. Scenes captured on the video were shown weeks later on RTÉ’s Primetime.

Last month, Judge Devins, at a special hearing, ruled that extensive video footage shot by an undercover reporter will be admissible in the cases.

On Wednesday, at Swinford District Court – sitting in Ballina – Brendan McDonagh, counsel for Ms Gill, indicated to Judge Devins that she would be pleading guilty to three of the assault charges on a full facts basis. Mr McDonagh said an agreement had been reached with the State on two further assault charges which Ms Gill was facing.

The court was told that two of the five who are pleading not guilty will be seeking further disclosure of state evidence before their trials are held.