A man who is in custody on charges of raping two little girls has requested a move to a different prison.
The 30-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared at Harristown District Court today (Friday).
He was charged on Monday with twice raping each of the girls at an address in Athlone last Saturday.
He had been remanded in custody to Castlerea prison in county Roscommon. Today he was taken by officers from the prison to the adjoining Harristown court for a scheduled remand appearance.
Wearing a white T-shirt and dark trousers, he stood in the area reserved for prisoners and indicated to his solicitor, Gearoid Geraghty, that he wanted to consult with him.
Following a brief consultation, Mr Geraghty advised Judge Geoffrey Browne that his client was seeking a transfer to Clover Hill Prison in Dublin.
“These are the instructions that I’ve just received”, Mr Geraghty told the court.
Judge Browne said he had no jurisdiction in relation to the request. “It’s an internal matter,” he said.
Inspector Aidan Minnock of Athlone Garda Station applied to have the accused man remanded in custody to appear again at Harristown District Court on October 18.
There was no defence objection and Judge Browne made the remand order.
A large group of Gardai arrived at the court from early this morning.
Members of the Armed Support Unit, armed detectives and uniformed officers were out in force following protests last week outside Athlone courthouse and garda station in the wake of the alleged attacks on the two girls.
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