Seamus Woolf giving evidence in the Golfgate Court case

Supreme Court Judge Mr Justice Seamus Woolf gives evidence at the trial of four people over alleged violations of COVID-19 rules during an Orchatus Golf Society event on Friday.

Mr Justice Woolf, a former attorney general, was appointed to the Supreme Court in July 2020, but did not sit in court until last February following controversy over his appearance at the ‘Golfgate’ dinner on August 19, 2020.

Lawyers for two politicians and two hoteliers at the center of the case in Galway District Court on Thursday claimed they were being unfairly prosecuted.

Independent TD Noel Grealish, former Fianna Fell Senator Donnie Cassidy, and hoteliers John and James Sweeney appear before Galway District Court over an event at the Station House Hotel in Clifden.

The men’s legal representatives said their clients had followed the rules at all times during the two-day outing.

Prosecutor Eoghan Cole Beale said it was a state case that an indoor event was held and attended by more than 50 people on the date in question.

He said that the four respondents organized the event and did not take all reasonable steps to ensure that an indoor gathering did not exceed the number of people present at that time.

Mr Cole said the law then provided that an event organizer was “a person engaged in the publication, arrangement, organizing or management of an event”. He said that it is a matter of the state that all the four accused had organized the event.