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Over 30 charges struck out in Ballyspillane feud case






Over 30 charges were struck out and a number of convictions not proceeded with after several women - representing both sides of an ongoing Killarney "feud" - withdrew complaints against each other at a special sitting of Killarney District Court yesterday (Thursday).

A large garda presence and a number of garda vans secured the court. The parties left by separate entrances.

Solicitor for six of the accused, Padraig O’Connell, welcomed what he described as “a period of rapprochement”.

Mr O’Connell described the striking out of 30 charges as “an opportunity to let the dust settle”.

A recent charge alleging a threat to kill against a man known as “Sexy” is proceeding, the court heard.

The special sitting is the second such involving the dispute between a number of closely connected families in Hazlewood Drive and Ballyspillane area of Killarney.

Last November a case before the Circuit Court in Tralee was told the feud was sparked by a row over a bouncy castle in May 2018 during a First Holy Communion gathering of closely connected families, some of them related.

The charges struck out yesterday include public order, road traffic, and assault in a dispute which had spilled over into nightclubs and shops in Killarney.

The special sitting in December, heard how traffic had come to a halt in Upper Park Road in the “feud” with females fighting and how people in Ballyspillane needed to walk around their estate with CCTV, such was the threat level between families.

Inspector John Kelly asked each of the eight women withdrawing charges yesterday if they were doing so out of their own “free will” and they each replied this was the case. Judge Waters also satisfied himself the complainants had not been under pressure to withdraw evidence. The State also withdrew a number of charges.

Convictions against two women in December were also not proceeded with and no sentence handed down.

Inspector Kelly said gardai wanted to reassure the public that they were maintaining a presence in Ballyspillane and any incidents or infringement would be met with the full rigour of the law.

A fresh allegation of a threat to kill by 34-year-old Daniel O’Brien of Piercetown, Newbridge, Co Kildare, is to proceed, the court heard.

Mr O’Brien is alleged to have made a threat to kill or cause serious harm to Patrick O’Brien (otherwise known as Sexy) and this threat was made to Margaret Avanzo intending her to believe it would be carried out on December 22 last at Ballyspillane, Killarney.

He made “no reply” when charged on Thursday, the court heard.

Ms Avanzo was not withdrawing her evidence, the court heard.

However, Inspector John Kelly said “conscious of what has gone on here this morning” the State would not seek to remand Mr O'Brien in custody and would be seeking conditions attached to bail.

Judge David Waters remanded Daniel O'Brien to appear again on March 3. The conditions include that he is to abide by a curfew in Kildare and is not to enter Kerry unless in connection with his case.

His solicitor Padraig O’Connell assured Judge Waters his client “will leave Killarney once the bond is signed”.




Killarney centre stage for Pride Festival

The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage. Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July […]




The award-winning Kingdom Pride in Kerry festival is back next week and Killarney will take centre stage.

Kingdom Pride will be celebrated in towns all across the county from July 17 to 21.

The organisation’s flagship Party in the Park event will be held again in Killarney House and Gardens, following the Pride march in the town centre on July 20.

This year, in solidarity with the people of Palestine, Kingdom Pride in Kerry is inviting the people of Kerry to come to show their unity by bringing Palestinian flags and kites to the march, and to the Party in the Park.

“Pride is a protest for human rights all over the world. Here in the Kingdom, we have been so lucky to receive tremendous community support from our allies and supporters, and we see the struggle for liberation of all peoples as a united cause,” said Daniel Quirke, chairperson of the organising committee.

“Our events have always welcomed everyone, regardless of gender, orientation, religion, or nationality. We truly believe that together we can create positive change through caring for and loving one another. This year is no exception, and we look forward to helping to highlight the Palestinian cause, and to bringing people together to keep generating positive change for all people.”

Events will take place in Cahersiveen, Listowel, Killorglin, Tralee and Dingle, and include an Irish comedy night with Áine Gallagher, an Irish-language movie screening, yoga, sea swimming, poetry and storytelling, bowling, pitch and putt, a lively drag night at the INEC, and plenty more for people of all ages.

“We do our best to keep tickets as low-cost as possible, and we have lots of events that are totally free to attend. It is important to us that people can share Pride with us, regardless of income. Especially with the rise of the cost of living putting a strain on people’s pockets.” added the chairperson.


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A weekend of Live Music, Fun and Entertainment, at FleskFest 2024

The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event. “It promises to be […]




The organisers of the annual FleskFest have “a tremendous line-up, with a weekend full of entertainment to suit all” for the July 18 to 20 event.

“It promises to be the festival weekend of the summer, an event you don’t want to miss out on. Last year’s Festival was a fantastic memorable experience for our community, a time to get together and celebrate,” said festival PRO Seán Daly.

Organised by Glenflesk GAA, FleskFest 24 will take place at the Barraduff Community Field next week.
There will be a fully licensed bar in the Fest Marquee, some amazing live music on The Big Stage, food trucks and much more.
Glenflesk GAA club’s biggest fundraiser of the year includes a new-for-2024 Texas Holdem Poker Tournament on Thursday night.
Weekend highlights include old-time waltzing, jiving and polka sets with Paudie McAuliffe and Paudie Coffey Band on Friday,
On Saturday, the new Well Flesk event will take place.
“A morning of self-care and wellness at Flesk Fest featuring masterclasses in yoga, pilates, mindfulness, spinning, fitness sessions, workouts, firewood sauna and ice pods with a range of experienced and qualified instructors,” added Daly.
Leading local musician Johnny Courtney and Friends, Sam and Ina, The O’Donoghue Sisters, Reigning All Ireland Champions Glenflesk Ballad Group, and The Border Boys will take to the Big Stage over the weekend.
Sunday is Family Fun Day with children’s entertainment and disco and the All-Ireland Hurling Final Live on the Big screen followed by music with Thingamajig.
The festival will finish with a Sunday evening session with the Meadhbh Walsh Band.

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