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Man (30) arrested in Co Wicklow after workers were abused has not been charged

A large group of people gathered at the long-closed Lawless Hotel in Aughrim on Monday morning after learning workers were on site. The group interrogated the workers and videos have since circulated online purportedly showing this group displaying abusive behavior towards the workers, while onlookers applaud.

In a statement on Thursday, An Garda Siochána condemned this behavior and said a local sergeant was also abused when he attended the scene. On Thursday morning a man in his 30s was arrested for alleged crimes against public order.

Today’s news in 90 seconds – May 2, 2024

“Workers hired to carry out legal work at the site were allegedly subjected to abuse by some people present,” a spokesperson for An Garda Siochána said. “Some of the abuses were loudly applauded by everyone present.

“Some of this alleged abuse was posted online and has received significant attention and commentary on social media, further compounding the impact of the incident on those being abused.

“A member of An Garda Síochána attended the scene and was also abused. Based in Co. Wicklow, this Garda Sergeant works daily to benefit the Wicklow community.

“As part of a criminal investigation into the circumstances of the incident, a man aged in his 30s was arrested under the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act 1994 this morning of Thursday 2 May 2024 and is currently detained for further investigation. questioned under Section 4 of Criminal Justice. Act 1984 at a garda station in Co. Wicklow.

“An Garda Síochána respects the right of citizens to exercise their constitutional rights; This right does not extend to violations of Criminal Law or interference with the right of other citizens to carry out their daily activities.”

The Garda Síochána confirmed in a statement on Friday that the man they arrested over the incident has now been released without charge.

Thursday’s statement also called on the public to independently verify information they find on social media and/or messaging apps.

Rumors that the property is being used to house asylum seekers or Ukrainian refugees have been rife since it was sold last year.

However, the Department of Integration confirmed on Monday that the property is not under consideration to house Ukrainians or applicants for international protection.

The community received this news at a public meeting Monday night, which also discussed plans to open a food court at the site this summer.

A new Facebook page claiming to be “new owners and operators of Lawless’s Hotel” has outlined plans to open ‘The Lawless Heron’ food court on the site this summer.

They wrote that they had “appointed a contractor to begin work on cleaning the exterior of the hotel, restoring services to the building, and making some much-needed operational changes to the beer garden.”

The plans, whose authenticity has not been verified, nor has the owner of the Facebook page, incorporate an outdoor food and drink service, with a minimum of three food trucks, a small cafe/bar and outdoor seating, open from June to the end of September.

The owners of the Facebook page have declined to comment at this time.