Two Laois publicans have been fined €1,500 for allowing after hours drinking on their premises.
In separate cases heard at yesterday’s (Thursday, May 18) Portlaoise District Court, were Liam Brown (51), 32 Kylebrook, Portlaoise, the proprietor of De Bruns on Main Street, Portlaoise; and Paul Martin (44), 25 Crann Nua, Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan, proprietor of the Weighbridge Inn, Market Square, Portarlington.
In the case of Liam Brown, the court heard that the gardaí found 50 people drinking alcohol and smoking cigarettes on the premises of De Bruns, at 4am on the morning of August 21, 2016.
Evidence was given by Inspector Maria Conway, that when the gardaí initially knocked on the door of the pub they were not granted access, and when they went to the rear door they felt the door being pulled closed from the other side.
“A young person was put in control and things went very wrong,” said solicitor, Mr Declan Breen, explaining that his client had experienced staff difficulties on the day with two staff members missing, including the bar manager.
The accused pleaded guilty to three counts of offences relating to the sale of intoxicating liquor, as well as a charge of failing to admit a garda to the premises.
Judge Catherine Staines imposed fines on him totalling €1,500.
In the case of Paul Martin, the court heard that the gardaí found 12 people intoxicated on the premises of the Weighbridge Inn and alcohol was still being consumed, at 2.20am on the morning of July 30, 2016.
The accused had previous convictions for similar offences, and for selling alcohol to under 18s.
Defence, Mr Declan Breen said his client bought the pub as an investment opportunity and employed a manager with strict instructions to run it properly. That manager left to start up his own business, and the accused sourced a new manager who was given strict instructions. However, this manager failed, said Mr Breen, and was subsequently let go. There are now proper management structures in place, he said.
Noting that the accused had five previous breaches of this nature, Judge Catherine Staines imposed fines totalling €1,500.