Unregistered electrician first in country to be jailed

An unregistered electrician has become the first person to be jailed in Ireland for carrying out dangerous and illegal electrical work.

Michael O’Connell, who operated as O’Connell Construction with an address in Blessington, Co Wicklow, was given a six-month sentence at Naas District Court for portraying himself as a registered electrical contractor and illegally carrying out restricted electrical work.

Judge Desmond Zaidan imposed the sentence on the unregistered electrician because of the severity of the case and the poor standard of the work.

He handed down a three-month sentence for O’Connell carrying out electrical work while unregistered and another three months for portraying himself as a registered electrical contractor. No portion was suspended.

The prosecution was taken by the Commission for Energy Regulation, which has responsibility for regulating the activities of electrical contractors. The case was taken on foot of an investigation by the CER after a complaint was made about the works carried out by O’Connell on an attic conversion on an unidentified family home.

CER investigators established that the electrical works carried out by O’Connell were wholly unsafe and constituted a real danger to the occupants of the house, which included two adults and three young children.

The CER welcomed the court’s ruling.


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