A Limerick man was granted bail after he appeared in court charged with operating an illegal money lending business in the city.
Ray McInerney, aged 36, of Rhebogue Hill, Rhebogue is accused of “engaging in the business of money lending” without a licence contrary to the provisions of Section 98 of the Consumer Credit Act.
It is alleged the offences took place at various locations in Limerick on dates between January 1, 2010 and July 9, 2012.
McInerney is also accused of harassing two different men at locations in Limerick on November 5, 2011 and he is charged with harassing one of the men on a separate occasion on December 17, 2011.
The defendant, who made no reply to any of the charges, is also accused of making threats to one of the men that he would “kill or cause serious harm” to the other contrary to the Non Fatal Offences Against the Person Act.
Sgt Donal Cronin, Henry Street, told Limerick Court that a file had been forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions who had directed trial by indictment.
He requested a lengthy adjournment of the case to allow for the preparation of the book of evidence.
Noting the directions of the DPP, Judge Eugene O’Kelly said the charges were very serious and he agreed that the case “was not appropriate” for the district court.
The judge commented that McInerney had been charged in connection with what “seems to be quite a complex matter.”
When the case was called, solicitor John Herbert submitted a statement of means to the court on behalf of his client and applied for free-legal-aid.
However the application was withdrawn after Judge O’Kelly expressed his dissatisfaction with the statement of means which he described as a “cursory statement of affairs”.
The judge added that in the circumstances it was“not proper” to grant legal aid to the defendant.
McInerney, who did not speak during the court proceedings, was remanded on bail to appear before the court again on January 16, next.
If convicted of operating an illegal moneylending business, McInerney faces a maximum fine of €63,500 or a prison sentence of up to five years.