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Polish FA official before court
30 Mar 2015 17:05
A Polish Football Association official was arrested for "ticket-touting" outside the Aviva Stadium yesterday before the Euro 2016 qualifier.
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PZPN official Kazimierz Gren, 52, from Rzeszow, in southeast Poland, had travelled to Dublin on an official trip for the match.
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But he was arrested for unlawfully selling match tickets before the kick-off.
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He appeared before Dublin Disrict Court today where he was spared a possible fine and a criminal record after the judge found that while had been ticket-touting, there were "extenuating circumstances".
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Judge Michael Walsh heard claims that Mr Gren had been trying to help Polish ex-pats go to the game.
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Defence solicitor Matthew de Courcy confirmed that his client, who had the proceedings translated, was pleading guilty to a charge.
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Gda Sergeant Niall Gilhooley told the court that the case involved selling tickets without a licence.
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Mr de Courcy explained that while the situation seemed "shady", Mr Gren worked for a regional office of the Polish Football Association and had come to Dublin on an expenses paid trip for the match.
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He had brought over 12 tickets for relatives of people in his district in Poland who are now living in Ireland.
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Nina Blasik, 30, from Hanasterzec, Sesku, Poland, also pleaded guilty to the same charge and Mr de Courcy explained she was a friend of Mr Gren and was present to facilitate meeting the people who were waiting for their tickets.
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Judge Walsh said the match was a sell-out but noted from the defence lawyer that the block of 12 seats on Mr Gren's tickets went unused.
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