A Border crossing ID check
Sir, – Edmund J McCullough (August 24th) would do well to quell his indignation at being asked to provide identification to a member of An Garda Síochána, and would do better still than to advise other citizens to refuse to produce identification, under circumstances such as he illustrated in his letter.
The fact is that he was asked to produce identification having entered the State from another jurisdiction.
While Mr McCullough may not appreciate (or even recognise) that two separate jurisdictions exist on this island, this is most certainly is not a fact that has escaped the attentions of illegal people-traffickers over the years.
These unscrupulous individuals have taken advantage of the two jurisdictions (and the porous nature of the Border between them) to illegally smuggle people into this State.
The obligation to produce identification to a Garda on a bus that has just crossed the Border between Newry and Dundalk is no different from the obligation to produce one’s passport on arrival at Dublin Airport.
Section 11 of the Immigration Act, 2004 puts an obligation on everyone over the age of 16 (including Irish citizens) entering the State to have appropriate identification, proving their identity and nationality. Failure to produce such documentation is an offence, and can lead to arrest without warrant, or even a conviction (unlikely as this might be).
The gardaí on that bus on the M1 were (quite literally) just doing their job. – Yours, etc,