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71-year-old one of two men hit with fines totalling £1,500 for Covid breaching party

The district judge offered her opinion, saying: 'Do you know what should happen if you breach Covid regulations? You should be struck off the NHS list'

Covid police

Two Portadown men who had police call to an address on two occasions in relation to a party which breached Covid regulations have been ordered to pay fines totalling over £1,000.

Thomas Joseph Creaney, 48, of Moy Road, and Martin Maurice Lavery, 71, of Park Road, both had pleas of guilty entered on their behalf to one count of contravening Covid regulations at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

Lavery also made admissions to a second charge of failing to comply with a prohibition.

Prosecution outlined that on February 6, at around 4pm, police received complaints in relation to a party at an address on Park Road in Portadown.

Upon arrival, officers located five individuals, including these two defendants, from three different households.

Police issued the individuals with a Covid-4 notices and served the property with a Covid-2 notice, more commonly known as a prohibition notice.

Officers left the property but later received a further report that the party was still ongoing at the address.

This time police arrived and despite knocking on the door for a period of 20 minutes were refused entry.

When they informed the occupants that they could force entry, they were granted access.

Inside were five individuals. Three of these were issued with Covid-4 notices but as Creaney and Lavery had previously been issued with the same they were informed that they would be referred to the prosecution service.

Defence solicitor John McAtamney stated: “The resident of the address was Mr Lavery. Mr Creaney has since moved in but that was not the case at the time of the incident.

“They had been having drinks at Mr Lavery’s home when a few others then came in to join them.”

District Judge Bernie Kelly commented: “Do you know what should happen if you breach Covid regulations? You should be struck off the NHS list.”

Creaney and Lavery were ordered to pay £500 and £1,000 respectively, along with the offender’s levy of £15.

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