Newtownabbey man remanded into custody accused of ‘harrowing’ rape

A Co Antrim man was remanded into custody today (Wednesday) accused of what his own solicitor described as the “harrowing” rape of a woman he allegedly imprisoned and threatened to kill.

Court news.

Appearing at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court by videolink from police custody, 20-year-old Conor Seamus O’Neill confirmed that he understood the 10 charges against him.

Unemployed O’Neill, from Elmfield Road in Newtownabbey, is accused of rape, attempted rape, sexual assault by penetration, trespass with intent to rape, false imprisonment and common assault, all alleged to have been committed on a single female victim on September 20 this year.

O’Neill is further charged with theft, using disorderly behaviour on High Street in Lurgan and causing criminal damage to a police vehicle on the same date.

None of the facts surrounding the charges were opened in court but Detective Constable Mallon said police believed they could connect O’Neill to the offences.

Describing the incident as “very harrowing,” defence solicitor Adrian Harvey told the court “my heart goes out to the victim in this case,” revealing that she has gone through protocols at the rape crisis centre.

The solicitor further revealed that O’Neill has significant mental health difficulties but that he does understand the charges.

As Mr Harvey did not apply for bail, Deputy District Judge Laura Ievers remanded O’Neill into custody and adjourned the case to October 1.


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