DCSIMG

Bail refused to man accused of punching bus driver in face

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A Belfast bus driver was punched in the face as he tried to stop a drunken passenger boarding a service to Dublin, the High Court heard today.

Mark Duggan also allegedly jumped into the victim’s seat and shouted: “I’ll be the driver, I’ll take everybody where they want.”

The 39-year-old, of no fixed address, faces charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm and resisting police over the incident last Friday.

He was refused bail due to the risk of committing further offences.

Prosecution counsel said the victim was parked at Glengall Street in Belfast city centre waiting to pick up passengers for Dublin.

Duggan appeared and was refused entry because he smelt of drink, the court heard.

He then allegedly said “I’ll knock your b******s in” before punching the driver and exiting.

The victim suffered a cut lip, chipped tooth and facial swelling.

Duggan was arrested following a struggle at a nearby hotel, the prosecutor said.

On being cautioned the accused allegedly replied: “Blah, blah, blah, f*** off.”

Joel Lyndsay, defending, accepted it would be difficult to secure the release of a client who was trying to get on a bus for Dublin.

He stressed that Duggan would accept any conditions, including electronic tagging and a curfew.

But refusing the application, Lord Chief Justice Sir Declan Morgan described any attacks on public servants as serious.

He added: “People like this are entitled to be protected by the courts.”

 
 
 

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