Mr Justice Woulfe apologises for attending controversial golf dinner
Mr Justice Séamus Woulfe, who was recently appointed to the Supreme Court, has apologised for attending a controversial dinner which broke COVID-19 rules.
More than 80 people, including high-profile politicians and civil servants, attended the Oireachtas Golf Society dinner in spite of restrictions on events with more than 50 people.
In a statement circulated this morning, Mr Justice Woulfe said he was not aware in advance that there was going to be an organised dinner as part of the event.
“On learning of the proposed dinner during the course of that day, my understanding was that the organisers and the hotel had satisfied themselves that they would be operating within government public health guidelines,” he said.
“I attended based on that understanding, that it would be within the guidelines, but do apologise for any unintentional breach of any of the new guidelines on my part.
“I would never disregard governmental or health authorities advice regarding public health, and have been at pains to follow rules and guidelines since their introduction in March.
“That I ended up in a situation where breaches may have occurred is of great regret to me, and for which I am sorry. I unreservedly apologise.”
Judge Pat MacCartan of the Circuit Court was also reportedly in attendance at the dinner and was formally appointed as captain of the society.
Earlier this morning, gardaí confirmed they had opened an investigation into an event in Co Galway for alleged breaches of the Health Act 1947 (Section 31A - Temporary Restrictions) (Covid-19) Regulations 2020, as amended.
Mr Justice Woulfe, the former Attorney General of Ireland, was appointed to the Supreme Court this summer to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Ms Justice Mary Finlay Geoghegan.