04 Jul 2022

People begging in Naas is a constant problem for gardaí

Woman is living in a disused concrete manufacturing plant

People begging in Naas is a constant problem for gardaí

The entrance to the site in Naas

People begging for money in Naas pose an ongoing problem for gardaí, a sergeant told Naas District Court on May 12.

Maria Vasile, 46, whose address was given as Old Cement Factory, Dublin Road, Naas, was before the court for failing to comply with the direction of a garda at the Globe Retail Park, Monread, Naas, on April 30 last.

Sgt Jim Kelly said she was told to leave the area and to desist from waving a cup in front of people. But twenty minutes later she was back “doing the same thing again.”

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He added: “It’s constant and persistent around the town and it’s more than one person involved (but) there’s very little we can do with her.”

He said on this occasion the woman was on a footpath.

“It’s a constant problem for the gardaí because they return,” he said.

The court heard she has two previous convictions for similar matters, in Naas District Court and Portlaoise District Court.

The court was told it was not known whether the woman is a victim of an organised group or is acting on her own.

Judge Desmond Zaidan said he felt for the woman but “people should not be harassed like this.”

He said the government should have a better way of dealing with the problem.

He said that people should not be allowed to live in conditions like her address which are totally unsuitable.

The judge said he was surprised that steps haven’t been taken to prevent people going onto the site, a former concrete plant.

The judge said that there was a pattern to the problem of begging and a line has to be drawn somewhere.

However he said he was wasting time imposing a fine because it would not be paid.

He applied the Probation Act adding “she’ll be before me again.”

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