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PPS 'actively considering' criminal charges against retired rugby star Danielli and estranged wife

By Paul Higgins

Published 01/11/2016

Olivia and Simon Danielli before their marital split
Olivia and Simon Danielli before their marital split

The Public Prosecution Service is giving "active consideration" to the criminal charges against a retired rugby star and his estranged wife who have accused each other of assault and criminal damage.

Applying for the case against Simon Danielli to be adjourned for two weeks, defence solicitor Dermot Bowes told Newtownards Magistrates' Court the "prosecution have the matter under active consideration".

Mr Danielli (37), from the Coaches in Holywood, is facing charges that he damaged an iPhone belonging to his wife Olivia and three counts of common assault alleging that he assaulted both her and her friend in March last year.

Mrs Danielli (29), from the 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 had at one stage been charged with assaulting the 6'2" former Ulster and Scotland winger but that offence was dropped by the PPS at an earlier stage.

When the cases were last before the court two weeks ago, District Judge Mark Hamill told the lawyers he had a "suggestion" for them all to get together "and talk about a binding over [order] as a potential outcome" given the difficulties of the prosecution putting them forward as a "witness of truth one day and liar the next".

On Tuesday Mrs Danielli's defence lawyer Conan Wray said he was consenting to Mr Bowes' application to have the respective cases put back for two weeks.

Adjourning both cases to November 15, Judge Hamill said that in the meantime "I will read the papers to see what the issues are in this case".

Ex-Bath, Borders and Ulster winger Danielli made 32 appearances for Scotland and 78 for Ulster before retiring in 2012 due to a back injury.

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

A former model, the 29-year-old mum-of-three previously worked for Alison Clarke’s prestigious agency ACA Models.

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