Dublin city councillor jailed
A Dublin City councillor has been sent to jail for her failure to pay a €1,500 fine for throwing paint over former health minister Mary Harney in November 2010.
Eirígí spokesman Brian Leeson said that Louise Minihan presented herself to Ballyfermot garda station earlier today from where she was taken to the Dóchas Centre, a female prison located in Mountjoy Prison.
Ms Harney had paint thrown at her, covering parts of her clothes, neck, chest and hands, during a sod-turning ceremony for a new primary care and mental health unit at Cherry Orchard Hospital in west Dublin, on November 1st 2010.
Minihan, who is a member of the socialist republican Éirígí party, pleaded not guilty to assaulting the former health minister and criminal damage to her clothing, which were worth €600 to €800. However, she received a two-month suspended sentence and a €1,500 fine following her conviction on charges of assault and criminal damage relating to the incident.
Speaking prior to her arrest Minihan continued to maintain that this was “a legitimate political action, which should never have been brought before the courts”.
“I never intended to pay any court-imposed fine or to apologise for my actions. To have done so would have undermined the legitimacy of my protest and the wider political struggle against the anti-social policies Mary Harney so proudly championed,” she said.
“I am proud to have taken a stand in defence of the public health service and will be not be deterred by a couple of day's in jail.”
A spokeswoman for the garda press office confirmed that they had arrested a female at approximately 2pm today in Ballyfermot in connection with a penal warrant.