Irate chip shop owner ‘wielded an iron bar’

A chip shop owner and rate payer in Kenmare, Co Kerry, became so irate with a mobile chip van that was parked outside his door on busy weekend nights last October that he wielded an iron bar, Kenmare District Court heard.

However, Judge James O’Connor refused to convict him, saying that he could understand his frustration.

Ergin Koyun of Main St, Kenmare, had produced an iron bar in the course of a dispute at The Square, Kenmare, on October 5.

The matter was “far more than trade jealousy”, said solicitor Padraig O’Connell. His client was a rate payer who had already lost one business because of the council’s failure to regulate out-of-hand street trading in Tralee, the solicitor claimed.

“He has been in contact with the council,” said Mr O’Connell. “They are queuing to collect his rates, but not to deal with the situation.” What his client did was out of character and he was very sorry but matters had spilled over, said counsel.

Sergeant Derek Fleming of Kenmare agreed with the solicitor and said there were issues in the town about market property rights which were ongoing for years. The chip van owner does not pay rates and over the past two years parks alongside Mr Koyun’s business on the busy weekend nights.

Judge O’Connor said that was a bit annoying for Mr Koyun. “I won’t convict him. I can understand his frustration,” he said putting the case back for mention to December.

Last summer, by-laws attempting to reign in street selllers in Kenmare ended up before the courts and were withdrawn by the council. The by-laws went back to the drawing board, but are still not ready, the council said..



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