Trio charged with felling trees in Salthill Park

The felled trees in Salthill Park. PHOTO: JOE O'SHAUGHNESSY

Two siblings and another man have been charged in connection with the felling of five mature trees in of Salthill Park last year.

Denise Colgan (57) and her brother Roy Colgan (62), both of Charnwood, Park Avenue, Salthill, appeared before Galway District Court last week.

They are each charged with damaging five large mature trees belonging to Galway City Council at Salthill Park on July 16, 2016, intending to damage such property or being reckless as to whether such property would be damaged, contrary to Section 2 (1) of the Criminal Damage Act 1991.

Sergeant Georgina Lohan told the court the defendants made no reply when the charges were put to them.

She said the Director of Public Prosecutions had directed the matter could be dealt with at District Court level and that the Council estimated the cost of the alleged damage at €5,500.

Judge Mary Fahy asked for an outline of the alleged facts to decide if she would accept jurisdiction to deal with the matter at District Court level.

Sgt Lohan said it would be alleged Ms Colgan organised the felling of the trees. Her home is situated behind the Park and behind where the trees had been growing.

Judge Fahy accepted jurisdiction and she directed copies of Garda statements, plus CCTV, if available, be sent to defence solicitor, Martin Kearns before remanding both accused on continuing bail to January 22 next.

Hearing that Ms Colgan divides her time between the Netherlands and her home in Salthill, Judge Fahy excused her from attending court in January, but told Mr Kearns she expects his client to indicate on that date through him whether a plea would be entered, or if a date would be taken for hearing. The defendant was to be in court on the next court date after that.

Judge Fahy then issued a bench warrant for the arrest of co-accused, John Nolan (47), High Street, Headford, who failed to appear before the court to face the same criminal damage charge as the Colgans.

Noting he was not present in court to answer his bail, the judge estreated €300 to the State which Mr Nolan had lodged with Gardai to secure bail when initially charged.