John Waters briefly jailed over non-payment of parking fine

Irish Times columnist says he was ‘just one minute’ late returning to his car in Dun Laoghaire

Irish Times columnist John Waters was briefly jailed this afternoon after he failed to pay a € 40 parking fine

Irish Times columnist John Waters was briefly jailed this afternoon after he failed to pay a € 40 parking fine

Tue, Sep 3, 2013, 18:09

Irish Times columnist John Waters was briefly jailed this afternoon after he failed to pay a € 40 parking fine.

The well known media figure refused to pay the fine in a case that dates back to 2011. A judge ordered that he pay the fine or be jailed for a day and when his period permitted to make the payment expired a warrant was issued for his arrest.

He presented himself to Dun Laoghaire Garda station in south Co Dublin this morning after going to the station by arrangement with gardaí.

He was then taken to Wheatfield Prison, Clondalkin, west Dublin, in a Garda car to serve his one-day jail term.

The Irish Times understands he arrived at the jail in a Garda car shortly before 1pm. He was processed into the prison population, as is normal with any new committal, and was then almost immediately released from his prison sentence.

He spent around two hours in total in the prison.

He claimed at the time the parking ticket he received in Dun Laoghaire was unfair, saying he was just one minute late in returning to his car after a 15 minute grace period had expired.

He said of the issue at the time: “How can you do business in Dun Laoghaire? You cannot decide how long a meeting will last. It is destroying social life. If I meet someone I can’t start a conversation for fear of being fined. It is destroying social interaction.”

“The town is reaching the point of critical mass where the time is coming where people will stop coming in. There are far too many shops closing.”

“I paid my € 2 and when I came back there was this ticket with the time 16 minutes over the hour.”

“A man who I spoke to said the warden walked past the car and checked the time on the ticket, then came back when it was a minute over. That’s three cents over.”