A Drumshanbo publican has been fined a total of €1,500 for breaches of Covid regulations, at Carrick-on-Shannon District Court.
64-year-old Henry Sorohan, Henry’s Haven, Convent Avenue, Drumshanbo, Co Leitrim pleaded guilty to a charge that on September 20 last year at that location permitted the spread of Covid 19 following investigations by gardai conducted on the inspection on that date that there was evidence of consumption of alcohol and no evidence of consumption of food in the premises.
He pleaded guilty to an identical charge on the same date and same location.
He also pleaded guilty to similar charges on October 3 and October 4 at the same location.
The court heard that when gardai called at the premises at 12.05 am on September 20 last year there were from 50-60 people drinking there.
There was no evidence of food being served.
Mr Sorohan was sitting at a table which contained drink and offered no excuse why drink was being served or why the contact register was not being filled.
The court heard the defendant was warned about the conduct of his premises.
Gardai got a call at 1 am on October 4 about a number of people on the premises.
When they got into the premises at 1.45 am there were 28 patrons leaving the premises.
The owner said there were young people on the premises and there was no control on them, and he added that a register was there for them to sign, and they wrote in it when they wished.
There were no entries on the register.
The court heard the defendant had no previous relevant convictions.
Defence solicitor John McGuinness said the owner accepted that standards had fallen short.
He had hand sanitiser and screens and the groups were well spread out, but he admitted that he had lost control of the situation.
The defendant was trying to do the right thing, apologised to gardai and knows the seriousness of the matter, Mr McGuinness said.
Since these matters, he had completed a course in Covid compliance, the court heard.
The defendant was running a long-established premises in Drumshanbo for the past 25 years.
Judge Deirdre Gearty noted the guilty plea, adding that the defendant had broken the rules.
The judge fined the defendant €500 for one offence on September 20 and took the other one into consideration.
She fined the defendant €250 and €750 on the charges for October 3 and October 4.
Leave to appeal to the circuit court was set at €100 own bond and €100 independent bond.
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