Charges on anti-fur protesters thrown out
ANIMAL rights protesters who staged a demo outside a city centre fur shop have had charges against them dismissed after a judge ruled gardai were not entitled to move them on "just for being activists".
Edmund Long (33) and Gloria Bartolome (38) were both arrested after a complaint was made to gardai about images of animal cruelty visible on a desk they had set up outside a Grafton Street store.
But Judge Ann Watkin said gardai had no power to ask them to move on because there was no evidence they had been loitering or committing any other public order offences.
The prosecution was one of several that have been brought activists protesting outside Barnardo's, Ireland's oldest furriers.
Long, of Edenmore Drive, Raheny, and Bartolome of Measc Green, Artane, had both denied charges of failing to obey garda directions and refusing to give their names and addresses, relating to an incident on June 26 last year.
They represented themselves at Dublin District Court.
Garda Sheanagh Carroll said the two were "incredibly abusive to me and the driver" after they were arrested and taken to Pearse Street Garda Station.
Judge Watkin said. "I don't accept that the mere fact that somebody has a table up and is an animal rights activist means you [the Garda] have the right to tell them to go."