An anti-blood sport activist who placed banners on a cathedral in Co.
Galway has been fined for failing to comply with a police order to end
His placards accused Bishop John Kirby of Clonfert of cruelty to
animals by allowing a hunt to cross Church lands.
The court was told that Tom Hardiman of Craughwell had placed
placards on railings outside the cathedral declaring "The Bishop
Supports Cruelty" and "Stop the Cruelty".
In addition to the charge of intending to provoke a breach of the
peace, Mr Hardiman, 48, was also failing to comply with the direction of
a policeman to remove the offending slogans.
Garda Gerry Kelly told Judge Michael Reilly that he believed the
contents of the placards, which included photographs of animals being
torn apart, were libellous and obscene.
He added that, in his opinion, there would have been a breach of the
peace when people began to leave the cathedral.
Mr Hardiman said it was not his intention to provoke a breach of the
He told the court his intention was to highlight cruelty to foxes. He
recalled having staged a similar protest outside the Dáil and there had
been no interference from police or the public on that occasion.
Judge Reilly imposed a fine of £150.
From The Universe dated April 23, 2000:
Reproduced with thanks.