Gardaí closed a premises in Dublin and seized a large amount of alcohol last night as part of its operation checking that licensed premises are adhering to public health guidelines.

They said they observed breaches of the Covid-19 regulations and existing liquor licensing legislation in what it said was a premises "allegedly operating as a restaurant" in Dublin city centre. 

In a statement, gardaí appealed to all citizens, business owners and customers to continue to comply with Covid-19 regulations and guidelines for their own personal health and the health of the wider community during the pandemic.

On Friday, gardaí announced they would be checking licensed premises nationwide following concerns from garda management, the public and industry representative bodies that some licensed premises and their customers have not been adhering to the public health guidelines.

Licensed premises reopened last Monday under Phase 3 of the roadmap to reopen the country.

At present, pubs are only allowed serve alcohol to customers who purchase a "substantial" meal costing at least €9.

Pubs who do not operate this restaurant-style service must remain closed until Phase 4 of the roadmap begins on 20 July.

Customers should only be on the premises for 105 minutes.

Speaking ahead of the start of Operation Navigation, the Deputy Commissioner for Policing and Security John Twomey said: "It now appears that just a few days after their introduction some licensed premises and their customers are ignoring the public health guidelines.

"By doing so, they are putting themselves and everyone they then come into contact with at risk of getting Covid-19. This is not acceptable and we are now expanding our planned checks."

It said where potential breaches of the Public Health Regulations were identified and where a person does not come into compliance with the regulations, a file would be submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

It also said that under liquor licensing laws, a licensed premises requires a declaration of suitability from a garda in order for its liquor licence to be renewed.