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Six people due before courts as first summonses issued for non-payment of Covid-19 fines

A court date for not paying a fine could face a €1,000 fine and/or a month in prison.

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File image.
Image: Shutterstock/Lukassek

SIX PEOPLE HAVE failed to pay a garda issued Covid-19 ticket and are now set to appear before the courts, new figures have revealed.

In a release of statistics today An Garda Síochána gave a rundown of details about the fines issued to people for non-essential travel and other offences.

As of this morning six people are set to appear before District Courts in March 2021 for non-payment of a COVID-19 fine. The accused will appear before judges in Dublin, Cork, Meath, Waterford and Limerick.

The six people who failed to pay their fines within 28 days will receive a summons for court and could face a €1,000 fine or a month in prison.

The Garda Press Office statement said that approximately 4,600 fines for breaches of COVID-19 regulations have been issued by the force. Of these, 3,523 have related to non-essential travel.  375 were issued for non-essential journeys to airports or ports while 301 fines were issued for organising and attending a house party.

An Garda Síochána has also issued 94 fines for the non-wearing of face masks in certain locations with the vast majority of these, 70, in retail premises.

From 7am on 8 February gardaí will begin issuing fines for non essential cross border journeys.

People travelling to an airport or port to take a holiday abroad are now liable for a €500 fine each for undertaking a non-essential journey.

Gardaí said they were continuing to conduct checkpoints on access roads to airports and ports, as well as in departure areas, to check on whether people travelling to these locations are undertaking an essential journey. They said that travelling to an airport or port to take a holiday abroad is not an essential journey.

“Since 29 January 2021, Gardaí have issued approximately 375 fines at Dublin Airport to people for leaving the country for non-essential travel.

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“Gardaí have also intervened with house parties right across the country with in excess of 300 fines issued for either organising or attending a house party.

“The fine for organising a house party is €500 and attending a house party is €150.

In addition, Gardaí can issue a fine of €500 for organising other relevant events in breach of public health regulations,” a spokesman said.

In recent days, An Garda Síochána have also attended breaches of health regulations by licensed premises, restaurants, retail outlets, hair and beauty salons amongst other business premises. In all instances, files will be forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Deputy Commissioner, Policing and Security, John Twomey said: “The message is clear and has been for some time – people should only make essential journeys, reduce their contacts, practice social distancing, and wash their hands. Please stay safe and keep others safe by staying home.”

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