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Four in court next week as charges laid over golf dinner
Noel Grealish TD Pic: RollingNews.ie

16 Jul 2021 / ireland Print

Four in court next week on golf dinner charges

A TD and a senator, along with two hoteliers, will appear in court next week on charges related to the Oireachtas Golf Society dinner last August.

Independent TD Noel Grealish (55), former Fianna Fáil senator Donie Cassidy (75), hotelier John Sweeney (60) and his son James Sweeney (32) will appear at a sitting of Clifden District Court in Co Galway next Thursday (22 July).

Each is facing a single charge of organising or causing to organise an event in contravention of Section 31A of the Health Act 1947, as amended to limit the spread of COVID-19.

The penalties for breaches of the regulations are fines of up to €2,500 and up to six months in prison.

A total of 81 people attended the Station House Hotel in Clifden last August 19 after a round of golf organised by the Oireachtas Golf Society dinner.

Society captain

Grealish, of Carnmore, Co Galway, was the society’s captain, while Cassidy, of Castlepollard, Co Westmeath, was its president.

John Sweeney is the hotelier who developed the Station House Hotel. 

Charges were laid after gardaí sent a file to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr Justice Seamus Woulfe, who had just been appointed to the Supreme Court, attended the dinner and later apologised.

A report by Mrs Justice Susan Denham said he should not be deprived of his livelihood as a result of his attendance.

She concluded that while he erred in deciding to attend the dinner, mitigating factors needed to be taken into account.

Gazette Desk
Gazette.ie is the daily legal news site of the Law Society of Ireland