22 May 2022

Gardaí raid New Year's Eve bash at sheebeen adorned with GAA and rugby flags and equipped with pool table 

Laois Offaly Kildare divisional gardaí carried out the operation

Gardaí executed a search warrant of suspected shebeen premises adorned with flags from counties in the four provinces of Ireland operating close to Kildare town on New Year's Eve.

Officers attached to the Laois Offaly Kildare Division evening carried out a search on Thursday, December 31 at approximately 8.30 pm.

During the search, Gardaí found 'approximately 15 people socialising' in a shed at the rear of a house.

"The shed had all the trappings of a traditional pub. Gardaí took details of all persons present within the shed, seized the intoxicating liquor and the drink optics and spirit dispensers," said a statement.

Pictures taken during the raid and subsequently published show a Christmas tree on a bar counter. GAA flags from Galway, Wexford, Derry, Donegal were among those draped on walls. A six nations rugby international promotion flag was on full display as was a Leinster Rugby flag.

The shebeen also appeared to have been equipped with a pool table and a stove and furnished with armchairs, sofas and what appears to be a kitchen table and chairs.

Gardaí said investigations are ongoing and a full file will be forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions for direction.

Gastropubs and restaurant were shut on Christmas Eve under new restrictions. Wet pubs have not been allowed open in months. Shebeen are illegal.

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