A leading solicitor has attacked the tactics used by the Revenue Commissioner’s office to impose fines on small businesses across Donegal.

Veteran solicitor Kieran O’Gorman described as “disgraceful” a case against a small businessman.

The man was fined €2,500 for not having the proper license for selling wine.

Mr O’Gorman told Letterkenny District Court that his client had been in business for ten years and was trying to get his tax affairs in order.

He revealed how officers from the Revenue Commission called to the man’s store and bought a €7.50 bottle of wine.

“I think it is disgraceful for happened here. My client has been in business ten years and was trying to get his tax situation in order.

“The Revenue knew that but they sent a man in to send a €7.50 bottle of wine.

“He could be fined €3,000 as a result and he just doesn’t have it,” he said.

Mr O’Gorman added that there were approximately 150 summonses before the court.

He defended many of those coming before the court for non-payment of tax saying they were simply “trying to get ahead.”

“Every one of them are trying to get ahead – if you take half you are talking about the collecting €75,000.

“These are not the high-flyers of the day,” he said.

Judge Paul Kelly said he understood where Mr O’Gorman was coming from.

However in relation to his client, he said the man should have known better about having the relevant license to sell wine as he had been in business for ten years.

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