Stephen O'Rourke was arrested on Thursday, January 12, Gardaí said, as part of the investigation into alleged threats to cause criminal damage to a residential property in Athy, Co Kildare on Monday, January 9.

O'Rourke, 43, appeared before Naas District Court on January 12, gardai confirmed on Thursday.

O'Rourke was charged with threatening to commit arson on the Abbey Hotel in Athy, as well as two counts of trespassing, the Irish Times reports.

O'Rourke has been ordered to stay at least 500 meters away from the hotel he allegedly threatened and to not contact the hotel's staff or residents.

He was court bailed and is due to appear in Naas District Court on February 14. 

Gardaí confirmed earlier on Thursday that a man had been arrested in Athy as part of an ongoing investigation into alleged threats to cause criminal damage to a residential property in Athy, Co Kildare, on Monday, January 9.

Gardaí said that on January 9, a report was made to Gardaí after a man entered a residential property on Stanhope Street in Athy and engaged in alleged threatening behavior.

An investigation commenced on January 12, resulting in a man being arrested in the Co Kildare area. The man was detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984 at Kildare Garda Station.

Kildare Now reports that in court on Thursday, Gardaí claimed that O'Rourke was recording himself on the property in Athy and streaming himself on Facebook Live.

The court further heard that O'Rourke allegedly got into an argument with Gardaí on the site, and it was claimed that he said he would 'light it [the building] up like a Christmas tree.'

Ireland's Department of Integration and Youth said families are being housed in the Abbey Hotel complex as well as some single women and children.

According to the Irish Times, it is understood that there are 94 places in the complex, which will be operating as a direct provision centre for at least the next seven weeks.

O'Rourke is a supporter of the anti-immigration National Party, the Irish Times reports.

In a public social media post on Tuesday, O'Rourke encouraged people to gather and "rock Athy town" at 7 pm on Thursday.

"Home our Irish first not the world !" O'Rourke's post said, adding, "Enough is enough."

In a subsequent post, O'Rourke shared a graphic that said "Athy says no to undocumented, unvetted, uncontrolled immigration" and that a protest would be held on Thursday evening at The Abbey hotel in Athy.

The Athy protest was one of several organized across the country for Thursday night, with others set to be held in Ballymun and East Wall in Dublin.

On Friday, Garda Commissioner Drew Harris told reporters that while the protests have been "peaceful" and gardai compliant, there are individuals "in the background" who have "a more sinister agenda" and that investigations and inquiries into such individuals are ongoing.

Minister for Justice Simon Harris further said on Friday: "I think it's important to note that communities right across the country are welcoming people to our shores, are welcoming people to their communities.

"Whilst we did see protests - relatively small protests - in a number of locations last night, we also saw many communities speak out against those protests saying, 'that is not in my name.'

"And we saw many people on a cross-party basis say, 'this is not in our name either.'"