Teen who blocked in TD avoids prison term
A teenager who was found guilty of blocking a Labour TD from moving his car after he held a constituency clinic has been ordered to complete 240 hours of community service in lieu of a two-month prison sentence.
Christopher Faulkner (19) was one a group of people protesting against water charges and austerity measures, which they believed had been introduced by the Labour Party, Swords District Court heard.
At a previous sitting, evidence was given that Faulkner and two other men were among a group of 15, some of whom were wearing Halloween masks and carrying placards, that blocked the car Brendan Ryan TD was in from leaving Main Street in Rush.
They brought traffic to a standstill, causing tailbacks a kilometre-and-a-half long.
Faulkner, of Rowan Heights, Drogheda, was found guilty of failing to follow directions of gardai, wilfully preventing the movement of traffic and refusing to provide his name and address to gardai on October 20 last year after he had pleaded not guilty.
In his evidence, Faulkner claimed he was engaging in "peaceful assembly" on the footpath to protest at the Lab-our Party's austerity measures.
At yesterday's sitting, a positive probation report was handed in, deeming him suitable for community service.
After Judge Kathryn Hutton made the order, defence barrister Patrick Jackson said the defendant wanted to appeal the ruling.