Page last updated at 21:07 GMT, Thursday, 4 March 2010

Gerry Adams' brother Liam released on 15,000 euros bail

Liam Adams handed himself in at a police station in Dublin city centre

A brother of Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams has been released on bail of 15,000 euros after handing himself in to police in the Irish Republic.

Liam Adams is wanted by police in Northern Ireland over claims he sexually abused his now grown-up daughter from the age of four.

Mr Adams told the bail hearing at Dublin's High Court "the media have treated my family disgracefully".

"I would love to go home, but not under their circumstances."

His alleged victim, Aine Tyrell, waived her right to anonymity late last year to allege that her father had molested her, claiming that the abuse included rape.

Half of Mr Adams' bail money was provided by a lifelong friend, while the other half was a cash bond of 7,500 euros paid by another daughter, Claire Smith.

Extradition sought

A detective sergeant told the bail hearing on Thursday that Irish police were concerned Mr Adams had fled one jurisdiction and that one of the charges he faces is rape which carries a possible life sentence.

But giving evidence, Mr Adams said he had gone voluntarily both to the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) on Belfast's Grosvenor Road and to Irish police in Sligo.

He is due to appear before a criminal court in Dublin next Wednesday.

Mr Adams was arrested earlier on Thursday at a Dublin police station, under a European arrest warrant which was issued by the Serious Organised Crime Agency on Wednesday.

He was then taken a short distance to the High Court for an extradition hearing.

A detective sergeant told the court that Mr Adams extradition warrant related to 18 alleged offences.

He said Mr Adams had told him he would plead not guilty.

The PSNI is seeking his extradition from the Irish Republic.

It is not the first time he has turned himself in.

In December, he entered a police station in County Sligo in the Irish Republic, but he could not be legally detained without a warrant.

Mr Adams was due to appear in court in Northern Ireland in November 2008 to face 23 charges relating to the alleged abuse, but he failed to show up.

The Sinn Fein leader, who has known about the allegations for over 20 years, has come under pressure to explain why he did not do more to prevent his brother from working with children while the claims were investigated.

Speaking after the arrest warrant was issued, a Sinn Fein spokesman said: "It is our view that this should have happened before now.

"However, what is now important is that this case is placed before the courts and allowed to proceed without further delay."

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