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Crowd ‘baying for blood’ turn up at home of man accused of public sex act

Court lady justice

A crowd “baying for blood” turned up at the home of a man accused of carrying out a a sexual act on himself in public.

The crowd descended on the 30-year-old’s Moy home on Saturday morning.

Slavi Apostolov from Charlemont Street is accused of carrying out a sexual act on himself in public which was described as a “carbon copy” offence to one he admitted to committing at a riverside walkway on June 14, 2023

Police were alerted after the female victim observed him standing on a pathway near the Blackwater River in Moy carrying out a sex act on himself “in full view”.

When dealt with last October, Dungannon Magistrates’ Court heard Apostolov “had taken cocaine and went to the area while speaking to a woman on the phone to do this act. He knows he shouldn’t have done it, however it wasn’t directed at the victim”.

Imposing 180 hours Community Service District Judge Michael Ranaghan told him: “This incident significantly impacted on the victim and the custody threshold is passed, but you have a clear record and made immediate admissions.”

However, Apostolov was back before the same court and judge for the same offence in the same place last week.

A police officer explained at 6.30pm on April 2, a report was received from a woman who had observed a male touching his genitals at the riverwalk in Moy.

She described him wearing a baseball cap, a blue jacket, and green-striped pyjama bottoms.

Two other women also observed the male touching himself.

Officers located him and checks confirmed he was Apostolov.

He was found to be in “an aroused state” while watching a video on his phone.

During interview he accepted being in the area listening to music but denied being aroused or simulating sexual acts upon himself.

The officer objected to bail as “there is a previous relevant conviction which is a carbon copy of carrying a sexual act in exactly the same place, while lone females were walking by. There are strong feelings about this in the local area. He lives just 200 metres from a GAA pitch and a child welfare officer from the club also phoned police as children there had seen him.”

However bail was agreed and Apostolov was ordered to have no contact with any witnesses and sign twice weekly with police.

He was also banned from entering the riverwalk area and must not come within 100 metres of the GAA grounds or any facility frequented by children.

Despite this he was arrested again on the evening of April 5 after police attended a gathering in the area of the defendant’s home in protest at him living there on bail.

The crowd was given advice by police and dispersed without incident while Apostolov was asked if he had anywhere else he could reside.

He said he did not, nor did he wish to live elsewhere.

Enquires revealed he had not signed with police that day as per his bail and conditions and was arrested.

He appeared before a special court sitting on Saturday morning where police again opposed bail due to the speed of the breach and concerns for his own safety around the gathered crowd “baying for blood”.

The judge on that occasion reminded Apostolov of his conditions and released him again.

However, yesterday (Sunday) he was arrested again after his bail address was withdrawn.

On appearing in court this morning, a police officer, said: “Concerns remain as the defendant’s family have indicated they are taking him back to Bulgaria. There is also no suitable address for bail.”

The judge decided Apostolov could be released provided an address is found which is suitable to police.

In addition his passport is to be surrendered.

The case is due back on April 17.

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