The threat caused a “bit of a panic,” but there remained a “seasoned” station sergeant who was sceptical. The sergeant checked the holding cells only to find one of the detainees talking into a small Nokia phone.

This “creative” 17-year-old had snuck the phone into the cell and had made both this phone call and another one threatening an explosion at the shopping centre if “Whacker Duffy” wasn’t released from Portlaoise Prison. The teen “feigned a northern accent and was demanding the release of all prisoners at Clontarf Garda station.” There were “explicit threats that a bomb would be detonated if he was not released by 2am.”

The boy was charged with knowingly making a false report and was called to court but pleaded guilty just before the trial’s start. He was already serving a sentence for other matters, having had 39 previous convictions for theft, robbery, burglary, disturbance of public order, possessing stolen property, obstructing gardaí and criminal damage offences.

Judge Kelly, who presided over the case, claims there had never been a case like this in Children’s Court before.