Deliberate decision taken by people not to pay their fines

District Judge Barney McElholm has said he was anxious to disabuse people, who receive court fines, of the idea that it doesn’t matter if they don’t pay them.

Mr. McElholm was speaking on Friday during the case of a 24 years-old Steven Gill of Kular Court who grabbed his now former partner by the throat on December 26 th last year.

Defence solicitor, Mr. Paddy MacDermott, described the assault ‘as not the most serious of its type’ and said Gill had nothing similar on his record.

The District Judge noted that Gill had fines imposed some time ago and asked what had been paid.

After being told that Gill had paid nothing in 17 months the judge commented: “There has been a deliberate decision taken by people not to pay their fines. I am going to disabuse them of the idea that it doesn’t matter.”

Gill was sentenced to three months in prison.