REVEALED: Most Waterford people avoid prosecution when brought to court over TV Licence

Justin Kelly

Reporter:

Justin Kelly

Email:

news@waterfordlive.ie

REVEALED: Most Waterford people avoid prosecution when brought to court over TV Licence

REVEALED: Most Waterford people avoid prosecution when brought to court over TV Licence

Figures uncovered by Waterford Live under the Freedom of Information Act reveal the staggeringly low payment of fines imposed as a result of TV licence prosecutions in Waterford.

Since January 2016, a little over a third (34%%) of court proceedings taken over TV licence offences in Waterford City, Lismore and Dungarvan District Courts have been successfully prosecuted. 

In a period from January 2016 to April this year, 590 prosecutions have been sought in the Waterford courts with just 202 being successfully prosecuted by authorities. The other 389 c

ases failed to see offenders prosecuted. 

75 of the 181 prosecutions sought in 2016 were successful while 106 failed to result in a prosecution. Just 104 were successfully prosecuted in Waterford in 2017, while 198 cases failed to yield a penalty. 

The figures reveal that prosecuted offenders are flouting the law when it comes to paying imposed fines for such offences. In the two years and four months from January 2016 to April 2018, fines of €54,569 were imposed through Waterford, Dungarvan and Lismore District Courts, but as of September 2018, just €9,470 of that total has been recovered by authorities. 

In the first four months of 2018, fines totalling €6,990 were handed down at the three Waterford courts, but just €968 of that has actually been coughed up by offenders. 

Offenders from 2016, who have now had two years to pay up, have racked up fines amounting to €18,017, but to date, just €4,773 of that has been recovered. Similarly, as little as €3,729 of the €29,562 racked up in fines through Waterford courts in 2017 has been paid over. 

The figures reveal that €45,099 in court-imposed TV licence fines are outstanding in Waterford, relating to court proceedings from January 2016 to April 2018. The Court Service has said that just three appeals were heard in that period, with two rulings being overturned in Lismore in 2017.

Under the law, households must pay the standard TV licence fee for each television set in their property, including holiday homes. 

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