A BAIL hearing at Omagh Magistrates' Court regarding a man charged with two counts of child abuse and two counts of child abduction was unable to proceed on Tuesday as the RM had sight of papers which the defendant's solicitor suggested might prejudice the outcome.
The RM said that if the defence thought that there was any slight chance of prejudice he should not even consider the case.
John Fitzgerald Gervin, formerly of Crannyfields, Omagh, has been in custody on the charges for some eight months.
A detective constable had indicated that he would oppose bail on the grounds that the defendant would re-offend. He added that he would need at least 48 hours notice to check out an address for the defendant. However, Michael Fahy, solicitor, acting for the defendant, said he had addressed the court on December 5 on the matter and that he explained that the defendant did not have an address but was seeking a place in a hostel through Probation Services.
The detective constable said that he had concerns that the defendant would not turn up for trial and had fears that the defendant would commit further offences.
Mr Fahy said that previous convictions on the defendant's record were of a 25 year vintage. He said that it was not sufficient to say that the accused would not turn up for trial when he dealt with all previous matters in a "fair and forthright way." Mr Fahy said that there had to be evidence produced that he would not turn up for trial.
The RM stopped the application when he said that it shouldn't be considered if there was any question of prejudice. The case was adjourned until January 9 for a bail application and a preliminary enquiry.