Last weekend a gang of up to 40 people vandalized one of Ireland’s historic monuments which dates back to to 1700 BC.
The Irish Examiner reports that the drunken thugs pulled stones from An Grianan Fort in Co. Donegal and defecated in a holy well before they verbally abused tourists.
The ancient ring fort sits 750 feet above sea level and offers spectacular views of the surrounding countryside.
Two of the accused, who both hail from Derry, appeared before Letterkenny District Court on Monday.
Raymond McCormick of Ballbane Pass, and William Sweeney of Oaklands Park, both Creggan, pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage to the fort on Jul 6. The pair were sentenced in Buncrana District Court in County Donegal on Thursday.
Both men received a month's jail sentence, suspended for a year.
Garda Eddie Doherty told the court that when he arrived at the scene he found women’s underwear, human excrement, beer bottles, and historic stones thrown around the fort.
Doherty also revealed how U.S. and Chinese tourists were left stunned by the violence.
“It was just a scene of carnage. The tourists who were visiting the area were traumatised by what they saw,” said Garda Doherty.
He added: “When I arrived both men were taking rocks from the walls and were throwing them down towards a car park.
Judge Paul Kelly described the behavior as ignorant, loutish and thuggish.
“This monument is one of the best preserved of its kind and I visited it myself some months ago,” he said.
“It has stood the test of time by many invading armies over the years and then this group of thugs come along and invade it and start to dismantle it from the inside.”
The judge ordered the men to pay costs of 900 euros ($1,174).
The judge added: "What they did on this day and specially the treatment of visitors was absolutely appalling - intimidating and harassing an American woman and Chinese family. It will not be tolerated.
Log in with your social accounts:
Or, log in with your IrishCentral account:
Don't have an account yet? Register now !
Join IrishCentral with your social accounts:
Already have an account ? Log in
Or, sign up for an IrishCentral account below:
Make sure we gathered the correct information from you
You already have an account on IrishCentral! Please confirm you're the owner.
Our new policy requires our users to save a first and last name. Please update your account: