Friday 23 June 2017

Santa Claus accused of handing out sweets and posing for photos without licence

'There was a law allowing Santa to enter Irish airspace, but I don't know where that leaves me'

Donal Squires, Oldcastle, Co Meath who was charged with casual trading at the district court in Dublin. Picture credit; Damien Eagers
Donal Squires, Oldcastle, Co Meath who was charged with casual trading at the district court in Dublin. Picture credit; Damien Eagers

Andrew Phelan

SANTA Claus is being taken to court accused of unlicensed casual trading after gardai stopped him in Dublin city centre at Christmas as he was posing for photos with children.

Donal Squires (48) prompted more than a few double-takes when he arrived at the Criminal Courts of Justice dressed in his full Santa costume.

His case was not dealt with due to an administrative error, but his lawyer said he anticipates the prosecution will be brought again at a later date.

Mr Squires, of Church Street, Oldcastle, Co Meath, is facing one count of casual trading without a licence.

Donal Squires, Oldcastle, Co. Meath who was charged with casual trading at the district court in Dublin. Picture credit: Damien Eagers 5/4/2017
Donal Squires, Oldcastle, Co. Meath who was charged with casual trading at the district court in Dublin. Picture credit: Damien Eagers 5/4/2017

The offence is alleged to have happened at Henry Street last December 18.

SWEETS

It is understood Mr Squires was prosecuted for allegedly giving out free sweets to children, posing for photos and giving out presents for a charge.

"The gardai said there was no licence for what I was doing," Mr Squires said outside court.

"It was on the news that there was a law allowing Santa to enter Irish airspace, but I don't know where that leaves me."

Defence solicitor Michael French said: "The case was not listed due to an administrative error. We envisage that the summons will be re-issued and the case will be re-listed in the coming months.

"My client intends on meeting the allegation head-on."

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