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Romanian man extradited to Ireland to face charges over stolen luxury cars

The defendant had to surrender his passport, provide gardai with his new mobile phone number, reside at Foxdene Avenue in Lucan, and sign on daily at the local Garda station

Stock picture© Getty Images

Tom TuiteSunday World

A businessman has been extradited back to Ireland on charges of stealing a car, possessing stolen vehicles and motor parts, and unlawfully having an electronic "relay" gadget for use in a theft.

Constantine Asimionesei (33), formerly of Holland's Park, Athy, Co Kildare, now living in Lucan, Co Dublin, was brought back from Romania on Friday to face trial on charges under the Theft & Fraud Act.

It follows an investigation by the Garda Stolen Motor Vehicle Investigating Unit.

He appeared before Dublin District Court on Saturday before Judge Bryan Smyth. He set bail in the defendant's bond of €1,000 and a €12,000 independent surety.

The father of two is accused of two counts of deception over the sale of two cars for €35,000, stealing a 2019-registered Kia Niro worth €30,000 and handling another stolen car valued at €15,000, as well as stolen car airbags, engines, doors, seats and other parts, on dates in 2019 and 2020, at locations in Co Dublin and Co Meath.

He also has a charge for having a Dell rucksack and an electronic relay device for use in connection with a theft, at his residence in Eaton Drive, Rathcoole, Co Dublin, on March 5, 2020, on the date of the alleged theft of the Kia Niro.

He made denials to three charges and had no reply to the remaining 12 charges.

Detective Garda Seamus Wallace objected to bail, telling Judge Smyth that Mr Asimionesei was initially arrested on March 5, 2020, but he was released pending the preparation of a file for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

He said the accused was told gardai would be in touch over the possibility of a further arrest; however, he left the country with his family 12 days later.

The DPP has directed trial at the Circuit Court level, which has broader sentencing powers, and Detective Garda Wallace said a European Arrest Warrant had to be obtained to bring him back to Ireland.

Cross-examined, he agreed with defence counsel Aisling Ginger-Quinn that Mr Asimionesei did not fight the extradition proceedings.

Counsel stressed her client's ties to this jurisdiction, telling the court Mr Asimionesei had lived here since he was nine. The court heard that his father and siblings were also in Ireland and willing to stand bail while his wife was about to return.

The barrister told the court that Mr Asimionesei went back to Romania after his mother died because of something related to her will. He had intended to set up a company there.

However, he now intended to remain in Ireland, and would abide by conditions, the court heard. A refusal of bail would result in a lengthy period in custody on remand while he had the presumption of innocence, counsel submitted.

Judge Smyth set bail, and after informing Mr Asimionesei of the financial requirements, he warned him that he must abide by a list of conditions.

The defendant had to surrender his passport, provide gardai with his new mobile phone number on which he must be contactable at all times, reside at Foxdene Avenue in Lucan, and sign on daily at the local Garda station.

He was remanded in custody with consent to bail to appear at Cloverhill District Court on Wednesday. Legal aid was granted.

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