Northern Ireland news

Man accused of false imprisonment denied bail

The accused is facing multiple charges

A DERRY man facing two sets of "serious" charges - both of which involve allegations of false imprisonment - has been refused bail.

Neil Joseph Patrick McFeely, from Creggan Street, is accused of tying a man up in a house in March 2021, and of barricading his partner into a downstairs bathroom earlier this month.

The application for bail was made at the High Court in Belfast and was heard by Lord Justice Treacy.

Crown barrister Sarah Minford said that bail was opposed due to concerns of re-offending.

Ms Minford said the 37-year old was facing seven charges linked to an the incident in March 2021, and a further five offences arising from a separate incident in August 2022.

On March 19, 2021 the Ambulance Service received reports that a care alarm had been activated an an address in the city.

When the emergency services arrived at the house and gained entry, they discovered the occupant in his bedroom with his hands and feet bound with pyjamas.

Also present in the room was McFeely who the Crown say was "sitting at the foot of the bed ... drinking from a bottle of wine".

It's the Crown's case that following his arrest, McFeely spat an an officer during his arrest, used disorderly behaviour at Altagelvin Hospital and urinated in a police van.

During an interview, McFeely said he had been invited to stay with the injured party and that they had been drinking together - but denied tying him up.

Ms Minford told Lord Justice Treacy that the second set of charges faced by McFeely arose from an incident in the Galliagh home of his partner.

Saying these alleged offences were committed whilst McFeely was on bail for the previous incident, the prosecutor said that on August 3 of this year, police attended an address and located the female occupant. She had been barricaded into a downstairs bathroom by an ironing board wedged against the door. When released, the woman was in a state of distress and told police McFeely was responsible.

She also claimed he assaulted her and stole her dead child's iPad. McFeely was arrested a short time later and was found to be in possession of the iPad.

Defence barrister Michael Donaghy said that whilst the allegations of false imprisonment against his client were "nasty", both were "robustly denied" by McFeely. Mr Donaghy said McFeely has expressed concerns he "could be languishing in custody for many months" before either of the cases "move through the system".

Urging his client's release, Mr Donaghy said McFeely had been bail compliant in the past and would abide by any conditions imposed - including staying away from the injuries parties.

After listening to submissions from both the Crown and defence, Lord Justice Treacy said he not prepared to release McFeely.

Branding both sets of charges as "serious", the Judge noted both featured allegations of false imprisonment.

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