Belfast Telegraph

Ex-Scotland rugby player Danielli and estranged wife to be tried within weeks of each other

By Paul Higgins

A judge has ordered a retired rugby star to go on trial accused of assaulting his estranged model wife.

However, two weeks after Simon Danielli takes to the dock, his wife Olivia will also go on trial in the same court in front of the same judge accused of damaging her husband's top-of-the-range Jaguar.

Simon Danielli is also accused of damaging his wife's iPhone and assaulting her friend.

District Judge Mark Hamill told Newtownards Magistrates Court he would hear the case against the 37-year-old former Ulster winger on January 24 next year, and the case against his wife on February 7.

Mr Danielli, who played for Bath, Ulster and Scotland, and who has an address at The Coaches in Holywood, is facing charges that he damaged an iPhone belonging to his wife Olivia and three counts of common assault involving his 29-year-old estranged wife and her friend in March last year.

Mrs Danielli, with an address on Marino Station Road, also in Holywood, is accused of damaging her husband's £38,000 Jaguar XF car in August last year.

The former model, a mum-of-three, had at one stage been charged with assaulting her 6ft 2ins husband, but that offence was dropped by the PPS at an earlier stage.

Previously, Mr Hamill had lamented that he was "sick and tired with the lack of progress" in both cases, saying the couple were "washing their dirty linen in public".

Mr Danielli made 32 appearances for Scotland and 78 for Ulster, before retiring in 2012 due to a back injury.

His estranged wife is the daughter of one of Northern Ireland's wealthiest men, property developer Seamus Jennings, who in 2012 was said to be worth £67m.

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