‘Squatter’ Was Providing “Home...


‘Squatter’ Was Providing “Homeless Service’, Court Told

Tom Douglas
Tom Douglas

03:45 17 Oct 2023

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An activist who claims he was providing "homeless services" while squatting at a vacant pub in Dublin has been released on bail after being charged with criminal trespass.

Stephen Bedford, 37, with an address at a homeless hostel on Usher's Quay, Dublin 8, appeared at Dublin District Court, charged with public order offences.

He is accused of trespassing with intent to interfere with property or commit an offence at Pimlico Tavern, Dublin 8, breach of the peace in Pimlico, and later giving a false name at Garda station from Oct 16 – 17.

Videos and images of the arrest were posted on social media of a man on a balcony remonstrating with the crowd below as a flag flew from the roof of the building.

At the started of his hearing, he was greeted with applause by supporters in the public gallery, whom Judge Treasa Kelly ordered to leave the courtroom.

Court Garda Sergeant Niall Murphy said there was no objection to bail subject to a condition to stay out of Pimlico.

Counsel said his client had issues with that because Mr Bedford had been "squatting and offering services to homeless people in that property".

He then faced a bail objection. The court heard the premises were vacant, but there were Garda fears it was likely to happen again.

Following a recess, the defence said the accused would sign the bail bond with the condition imposed.

The judge then released Mr Bedford, a self-employed audio-visual technician, who has yet to enter a plea.

He did not address the court, was granted legal aid and was told to return to court on October 31.

The judge directed gardai to provide the defence with copies of prosecution evidence and noted that there was no CCTV from the premises.

Two other defendants were released on bail and will also appear in court on October 31 on related charges.

Reporting by Tom Tuite.

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