Former UCD Professor Fined For Flouting Restrictions With Anti-Lockdown Protest In London

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Dublin Bay South By-Election - Dolores Cahill confronting Gardai and security courtesy of Elaine Loughlin @Elaine_Loughlin Irish Examiner Deputy Political Editor

The controversial and committed anti-lockdown advocate Dolores Cahill has been fined the equivalent €2,950 for holding an anti-lockdown protest in London, in an apparent and “flagrant breach” of Covid restrictions, a court has heard.

Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard on Monday that the 55-year-old former UCD professor helped organise a demo at Trafalgar Square for the activist group Stand Up X.

On the date of the demonstration of September 19th, 2020, gatherings of more than 30 were prohibited unless organised by a political body with a proven risk assessment in place.

She had not submitted a risk assessment to police or Westminster City Council.

District Judge Michael Oliver found her guilty of holding a gathering of more than 30 people on land in public outdoor place during the emergency period.

He determined her weekly income to be £2,000 (€2,360) and ordered she pay a fine of £2,500 along with a £190 (€225) surcharge and prosecution costs of £625 (€740).

He said: “I am satisfied so that I am sure that Ms Cahill was involved in the holding of this gathering.

It doesn’t seem to me any of the exemptions in place at the time were met in this case. Ms Cahill’s position from the footage appears to have vacillated from that there was a risk assessment on a laptop to that it could be submitted retrospectively.

It seems to me that the defendant’s culpability is high. This was flagrant breach of the regulations that were put in place to ensure public safety at the time of a national emergency – a pandemic.

The measures were plainly for a good reason – to protect people. There were plainly far more people than 30 present at this protest and the evidence suggests about 1,000 people.

Plainly, there was risk of harm to people attending and to others at the risk of transmission of Covid.”