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Dublin: 9 °C Monday 23 September, 2019

Former IFA president John Dillon released from prison hours after arrest

The farmer was jailed this morning over non-payment of fines related to his use of electronic signs during last year’s general election.

Former IFA president John Dillon (File photo)
Former IFA president John Dillon (File photo)
Image: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

THE FORMER PRESIDENT of the Irish Farmers Association who was jailed earlier today for his refusal to pay fines incurred after displaying electronic signs during last year’s general election has been released this afternoon.

Limerick’s Live 95fm reports that Dillon was released from prison just hours after he was taken into custody by Gardaí over his failure to pay a fine of €200 that was issued by the district court in Newcastle West last year.

The fine related to his use of electronic road signs to display messages promoting his failed campaign for a seat in the Dáil. Dillon refused to pay the fine and the €2,000 legal costs arguing that other election candidates had used similar signs in previous campaigns.

He was to serve an eight-day prison sentence at Limerick prison but was released this afternoon just after 2pm, claiming he was given no explanation for his release by Gardaí.

“I didn’t want to go to jail. Jail is not a place to be. That’s a place for criminals, I’m not a criminal,” he told Limerick’s Live95FM saying that he felt “victimised”.

Dillon, who was eliminated on the third count in the Limerick constituency having secured over 4,000 first preference votes, said he had no regrets about his actions in refusing to pay the fines to Limerick County Council.

“I will stand up to what’s going on and if I have to spend eight days there, that’s the way it will be,” he added.

Earlier: Former IFA president jailed over electronic election signs

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Hugh O'Connell

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