Two Mayo publicans charged with offences under the Intoxicating Liquor Act have had their cases dismissed because the Act is not available in Irish. Seamus Higgins of O'Huiginn Pub, Aidan Street, Kiltimagh and Patrick Coleman of 7 Ox Crescent, Tubbercurry and Pajos, Mount Street, Claremorris, appeared before Swinford court on Friday for submissions from the defence and prosecuting State Solicitor, Mr. Vincent Deane.
Mr. Brendan Donnelly, solicitor for Mr. Higgins, and Ms. Lynda Lenehan, solicitor for Mr. Coleman, argued their clients were prejudiced because the legislation wasn't available in Irish.
Mr. Donnelly told the court that the Official Languages Act of 2003 ruled that as soon as possible after the enactment of an Act it shall be published in the official languages simultaneously.
However, he had contacted the Oireachtas and was informed the Act would be translated by February.
Judge Mary Devins held in favour of both defendants and said she couldn't understand why. 10 years on, the Intoxicating Liqour Act had not been translated into our native language.