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Identity revealed of ‘archangel Raphael’ who ‘levitated over from Spain’ as he’s freed on bail and told to make way across border


Craigavon Magistrates Court.

Craigavon Magistrates Court.

Craigavon Magistrates Court.

The identity of a man previously known only as the “archangel Raphael” was uncovered today as he was handed “in effect, an extradition the wrong way round”.

Appearing at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court by video-link from Maghaberry, the defendant confirmed that, rather than a heavenly body who “levitated from Spain to Dublin”, he is, in fact, 24-year-old Philip Smith from Drogheda.

He is charged with damaging a police cell van on May 1 this year and, during two previous mentions of the case, the court heard that he was initially “picked up as homeless” by police in the Donaghcloney area, refused to divulge his personal details, save to say that he was the archangel Raphael, and “he told police that he had levitated over from Spain to Dublin and up to Northern Ireland”.

In court today, Smith told District Judge Bernie Kelly he “would just get the train” to Drogheda, where he would stay with a friend at Elmwood.

“Can you afford the train?” the judge enquired, to which Smith suggested he could get the money “on the street”. DJ Kelly replied: “No, no. You won’t be doing that.”

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A prison officer confirmed that Smith would be given a travel pass that would get him to the border, but DJ Kelly said what she needed was “to get him to the other side of the border”.

“Ideally, what I would like is that when you are released from prison you get on some form of transportation and you don’t get off until you reach Drogheda,” DJ Kelly told Smith.

When a police officer suggested that “we could link with the guards”, the judge told him: “That’s what I was thinking. If you could give him a wee lift to the border, for I just worry that he won’t have enough money for the train.”

“I’ll be fine. I’ll be fine,” Smith announced.

Smith was freed in his own bail of £500 with a condition that he resides at Elmwood in Drogheda — to which the judge conceded, “I don’t know if that [location] even exists but hey-ho” — and also in the “strict understanding that when you are released from prison you literally make your way immediately out of NI”.

Adjourning the case to July 15 and in a move the judge herself described as “in effect, an extradition the wrong way round”, she told Smith that if he failed to turn up that there would be a warrant for his arrest.

DJ Kelly stressed to Smith: “If you stay in the Republic, there’s nothing that anybody can do about any warrants that issue from the courts in the North.

“They only become an issue if you came back across the border… Which means that if you come back across you will be arrested and will go back to our fine facility in Maghaberry.”

“I will not come back,” the defendant assured her.

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