Children used for pub shakedown

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Publicans in Kilkenny City are being plagued by a group of young children entering their bars and attempting to solicit money from customers.

Publicans in Kilkenny City are being plagued by a group of young children entering their bars and attempting to solicit money from customers.

A group of four little boys and girls, all dressed as Santa, were operating along High Street and Parliament Street last week, where they entered every pub along the road before being ushered out shortly thereafter. They eventually got into a car which was waiting for them at the Irishtown end of town.

Bar staff say the practice is disruptive to business, unpleasant for customers, and distressing for them having to usher small children out. It is also illegal for children under 15 to be on a licensed premises without a parent or guardian.

The activity was also rampant around Hallowe’en, where costumed children would enter licensed establishments and harass customers for money, while their parents loitered 
nearby.