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A protest following the one which saw Tánaiste Joan Burton trapped in her car.
A protest following the one which saw Tánaiste Joan Burton trapped in her car.

Over 20 people, including a TD, will be charged in connection with the Jobstown Irish Water protest

Tánaiste Joan Burton was trapped in her car at the protest.
Aug 12th 2015, 11:52 PM 22,590 251

OVER 20 PEOPLE will have charges brought against them in connection with an anti-water charges protest in Jobstown in Tallaght at which Tánaiste Joan Burton was trapped in her car for hours.

RTÉ News reports that the Director of Public Prosecutions has ordered that charges including false imprisonment, violent disorder and criminal damage be brought.

Over 40 people were arrested following the protest, which took place as Burton was speaking at a further education graduation.

The Garda Press Office told that the investigation is ongoing and “it would not be appropriate to comment”.

The Department of Justice says that the issue is a matter for the DPP.

It is not yet known if those charged will receive a summons to appear in court or be arrested.

Burton eventually left the scene in a Garda car after a tense stand-off with demonstrators, who banged on her vehicle chanting various slogans, including “peaceful protest”.

Those arrested in the two months after the protest included TD Paul Murphy and councillors Kieran Mahon and Mick Murphy.

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Murphy this evening told that he believes he is one of those who will be charged with false imprisonment.

Murphy says that the charge is “very serious”, carrying a sentence of up to life imprisonment.

“The protest did not go beyond of other protests. There are multiple protests in the past where this has happened to ministers.

“I don’t think anyone who took part in the protest deserves to spend time time in prison.

It will be up to a jury to decide if the facts stand up to a false imprisonment charge. I don’t think they do.

“The mechanisms of this, I don’t know fully, but there is a clear political context here. That being that Irish Water is in trouble with non-payment and failing the Eurostat.

“It could be to discourage people from protesting, but I think it will backfire on the establishment. Massive resources will now be used on these cases.

If this is politically motivated, it has been badly, badly misjudged. People will not welcome Joan Burton being the star witness in a case of a protest which delayed her for two hours.

If Murphy is convicted for over six months, he can be removed from office under the 1992 Electoral Act.

Read: Two arrested over protest that trapped Joan Burton in her car for hours

Read: Video shows Joan Burton being hit with a water balloon at Jobstown protest

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Paul Hosford


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