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Extradited man denies sexually assaulting girls in Dublin Ikea store

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A GERMAN man has pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting two young girls shopping in Dublin’s Ikea furniture superstore with their families.

Christian Mayer (47) with an address at Johannes Strasse in Nuremberg, was extradited in January to be charged but had been granted bail at Dublin District Court.

The IT professional was accused of sexual assault on a girl on a date in August 2019 and sexually assaulting another young girl five days later at Ikea on St Margaret’s Road, Dublin 11.

They were aged 13 and 10.

Mr Mayer, who previously lived at Shanowen Road, Santry, Dublin, also faces two counts under section 45 of the 2017 Criminal Law (Sexual Offences) Act. These charges are for engaging in offensive conduct of a sexual nature.

The case resumed on Wednesday for him to indicate a plea, but he did not have to attend. His barrister John Griffin said there was a not guilty plea.

Judge Treasa noted he was contesting the charges, there were two child complainants, CCTV evidence, and the case will take a full day.

She ordered that it would be listed for mention in June for the date for the non-jury hearing to be allocated.

Earlier, Judge Treasa Kelly noted the Director of Public Prosecutions directed summary disposal in the district court, not in a trial in the circuit court, which has broader sentencing powers.

Allegations

Outlining the allegations, Garda Stephen Donnelly told Judge Kelly the mother of the 13-year-old contacted garda to report “her daughter had been sexually assaulted by a man that had grabbed and squeezed her breast area”.

The second girl was allegedly touched in her breast area five days later.

“Both kids were in the Ikea store with their parents shopping at the time,” said Garda Donnelly.

The court heard the alleged touching was on the outside of their clothing.

Jurisdiction was accepted.

A security officer alerted gardaí after the accused purportedly returned to the shop on November 16th, 2019.

He was arrested and detained for questioning that day.

Counsel John Griffin said there was substantial disclosure of prosecution evidence.

A previous bail hearing was told the accused had lived in Dublin for several years and worked in a city-centre firm.

The court set €15,000 bail.

He had to surrender his passport and not apply for any travel documentation to enable him to leave the EU. He provided gardaí with a phone number and must remain contactable.



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