Sunday 17 December 2017

Mary Harney's attacker will be 'free in few days'

Louise Minihan. Photo: Courtpix
Louise Minihan. Photo: Courtpix
Health Minister Mary Harney TP after she was pelted with red paint in protest at health cuts in 2010. Photo: PA
Luke Byrne

Luke Byrne

A DUBLIN city councillor jailed yesterday for throwing red paint at former Health Minister Mary Harney, expects to be free in less than a week.

Eirigi councillor, Louise Minihan, was taken to Mountjoy Prison yesterday afternoon after agreeing to be arrested at Ballyfermot garda station.

A spokesman for the mother of one said that her child would be looked after by her partner while she served her time in the Dochas female facility.

"A lot of the time, I understand that in these cases where someone is jailed for not paying a fine they let you out after a day or two.

"The prisons are so overcrowded that they can't keep you in," the spokesman said.

Ms Minihan was fined €1,500 in February last year and given a two-month suspended sentence. She was convicted of assault and criminal damage relating to the protest.

At the time she was told by the judge that she would face seven days in prison if she did not pay the fine within one year.

That period ended around five months ago but it is understood that the paperwork to jail the councillor was only completed recently. Ms Minihan said that she refused to pay on a point of principle.

"My protest was a legitimate political action, which should never have been brought before the courts," she said prior to her arrest.

"I never intended to pay any court-imposed fine or to apologise for my actions," she added.

Irish Independent

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