A separated Co Clare man, who has no access to the TV in his own home, yesterday emerged victorious in his TV licence battle with An Post - but he won't be telling his wife.
Liam McKee yesterday escaped a fine of up to €1,000 after Judge Patrick Durcan dismissed the prosecution being taken by An Post against him for no TV licence after hearing that the father of four grown-up children has no access to the TV at his own Shannon home.
Mr McKee shares his home at Cronan Gardens, Shannon, with his separated wife and two of their children and he agreed in court yesterday with his solicitor, Daragh Hassett that in the division of the home, he has no access to the TV.
At Ennis District Court, Mr Hassett said that Mr McKee has advised his wife to get the TV licence in her own name, but she hasn't done so.
Questioning the unusual domestic arrangements at the McKee home, Judge Durcan asked: "What happens if there is a match on and you want to see it on the television?"
In response, Mr McKee said: "I go down the road to where my mother lives and watch it there".
Mr McKee told the judge that the TV is located in the sitting room and Judge Durcan asked: "And you have no access?"
In reply, Mr McKee said: "It's, it's... very difficult."
The case initially came before Ennis District Court in October when Mr McKee was unavailable due to ill-health and Judge Durcan ordered that he appear before court yesterday.
After hearing Mr McKee's evidence, Judge Durcan said: "I will dismiss."
Speaking outside court after the outcome, Mr McKee said: "I'm delighted. I'm unemployed so if a fine was imposed, it would have been hard,"
Asked would he be telling the court result to his separated wife, Mr McKee replied: "No."
He said that there is very little communication between the two saying "It is 'yes' - 'no' most of the time."
Asked what it was like to share a home with a separated spouse, Mr McKee said: "It is not fun."
Mr McKee revealed that after the publicity surrounding the previous time the case came to court "she just gave out to me because of all the publicity and people saying it to her. It didn't make things any easier."
He said that it is now up to his wife to get a TV licence "otherwise if she doesn't, she could find herself up in court".
An unemployed computer engineer, Mr McKee said that he is not working at the moment after suffering brain seizures, stating that "the stress of the case didn't help.
Mr McKee confessed that he isn't a great fan of TV. He said that the last soap opera he watched was 1980s soap, Dallas.