Cork Extinction Rebellion activists to stand trial over alleged criminal damage to Dublin Government building

Cork Extinction Rebellion activists to stand trial over alleged criminal damage to Dublin Government building

 Rebellion activists, Orla Murphy (20), of Ballinacarrig, Whitechurch, Co. Cork and Zachary Lumley, of South Lodge, Ballinlough, Cork City, leaving Dublin District Court after a previous appearance. They are charged with criminal damage at the Department of Foreign Affairs, Dublin, and will go on trial in February 2022. PIC: Collins Courts

TWO Extinction Rebellion activists will go on trial in February over a live-streamed graffiti attack at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin.

Gardaí arrested Orla Murphy, 20, with an address at Ballinacarrig, Whitechurch, Co. Cork and 21-year-old Oxford University biology student Zachery Lumley, from South Lodge Ballinlough, Cork City, on the afternoon of March 19 last.

They were charged with criminal damage at Cabinet Minister Simon Coveney’s department building, Iveagh House, at St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2. Paint was splattered on the front of the building, with graffiti, "no more empty promises," sprayed across the building's entrance.

Posters were also stuck to the wall of the building. They were granted bail at Dublin District Court the following day.

Former film student Orla Murphy was held in custody for several weeks before she signed her bail bond and was released.

An initial estimate given in court was that repairs could cost up to €10,000. However, today, Judge John Hughes was told it was €4,300, and he accepted jurisdiction for the case in the district court.

They did not have to come to the proceedings today, but defence counsel Eimear Delargy said a hearing was required. The judge noted their not guilty pleas and set February 9 as the trial date.

In March, arresting gardaí Philip Farrissey and Paul Cummins had objected to bail, citing the seriousness of the case. The court heard that the incident was allegedly filmed and live-streamed on the Extinction Rebellion Cork's Facebook page.

Garda Cummins maintained it was a premeditated and prolonged attack lasting 12 minutes. Zachery Lumley allegedly filmed and encouraged his co-defendant, he had said.

The district court was told Ms Murphy had been a film student but became involved in climate activism and youths groups. Mr Lumley, a university student with an unblemished record, was also concerned about the climate crisis.

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