A man threatened his ex-partner and told her to leave the country or her entire family would be shot in an attempt to prevent her giving evidence in an assault case against him, a court has heard.
Noel McCabe (25) is currently serving a six-and-a-half year sentence for a number of offences, including assaulting his partner and violent disorder.
Sergeant Adrian Mulligan told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on Monday that after McCabe was charged with two counts of assaulting his partner in March and April 2018, he went on to make threats against her.
McCabe, with an address at Sandyhill Gardens, Sillogue Road, Ballymun, Dublin pleaded guilty to obstructing the course of justice by intimidating a witness in June 2018. He will be sentenced early next year.
The court heard that the victim had been in a relationship with McCabe for 18 months, which she described in a victim impact statement as a “nightmare”.
The relationship ended after McCabe was charged with assaulting her, but she then started receiving phone calls from him and other unknown numbers, Sgt Mulligan said.
In one phone call, a man who claimed he wasn’t McCabe told her she had a week to leave the country or her whole family – including her daughter – would be shot.
In another call, McCabe asked her to drop the assault charges against her and she refused. She later received another call saying she had 24 hours to leave the country or her family would “get it”.
A garda investigation identified a phone number used to make the calls to the victim and the details of the top-ups. One of those top-ups was made at a Londis shop on Parkgate Street beside the Criminal Courts of Justice on a day McCabe was due in court.
McCabe was then seen on CCTV footage buying a mobile top-up in the Londis shop on that date.
He initially denied making any threats to gardaí and was “angry” at the thought of a threat being made against a child, the court heard.
McCabe has 34 previous convictions including assault, possession of ammunition, production of an article and road traffic offences.
In a statement handed into court, McCabe’s ex-partner said the threats made her seriously consider proceeding with the case against him. She said she was in fear for herself and her family at the time, and was afraid to let her daughter out of her sight.
Defence barrister, John Berry BL, said his client had alcohol and drug issues at the time of his offending, but that he is now drug-free in custody. He sought to adjourn the matter for a few months to allow for a number of reports to be prepared.
Judge Melanie Greally adjourned the sentence to February 1 next year.