Ryan’s involvement in the sauna was in breach of his contract and amounted to gross misconduct.
“It was clear he chose not to tell us about the other business,” stated Comerford, who claimed there had been an “ongoing deception” on Ryan’s behalf.
In his evidence, Ryan told the tribunal the company which runs the sauna was not incorporated until January 2010 and that it was just “an idea” when he started working for the hotel.
He said he was not involved in the day-to-day running of the sauna and insisted it had no impact on his role at the hotel.
In its decision, the tribunal noted that Ryan had not been the subject of any previous disciplinary action and the fact that his involvement in the sauna did not interfere with his job.
The tribunal noted that a specific clause in Ryan’s contract of employment did prohibit him from engaging in other work without written permission from his employer.
However, the tribunal states that it “notes that his other business was 60 kilometers away and while his contract included a restrictive covenant, he was not advised that if it was breached it could lead to his dismissal.”
The tribunal ruled that the appropriate remedy was to award Ryan €25,333 in compensation.
Ryan, a married father of three, said he was happy with the outcome.
“The tribunal has found that I was duly unfairly dismissed, and I am pleased that my character and reputation has been exonerated,” he said.
Deadly Bug Scare
A LETHAL bug has claimed six lives, including two children, in just four months.
The spread of the iGAS infection has sparked a medical alert across the country.
Two of the most severe forms of the bug are a flesh-eating condition which destroys muscles, fat and skin tissue, and Toxic Shock Syndrome, which can cause a rapid drop in blood pressure leading to organ failure.
Two of the six deaths were in children and the other four were in adults over 60.
Eleven children contracted the infection in the first 10 weeks of this year compared to just four in the same period last year.
Medics are concerned by the increasing number of cases which are difficult to diagnose.
In all, 36 cases were reported compared to 22 in the same period in 2012, the Health Protection Surveillance Centre has reported.
The bug can also cause bloodstream infection, pneumonia, meningitis, sepsis and septic arthritis.
The HPSC confirmed that Invasive Group A Streptoccocal Infection (iGAS) has been responsible for six deaths in the first 16 weeks of this year alone.
Dr. Ray Walley, chairman of the IMO's General Practitioner Committee, said the condition is so rare it would be easy for a doctor to miss it.
Walley stressed the need for "surveillance through good centralized planning" to make sure that every doctor was aware of the signs. He told the Herald that he had one case in a child last year and on a "gut feeling" referred the child to Temple Street hospital where a mild form of the disease was diagnosed.
The issue was raised last night at an executive committee meeting of the Irish Medical Organization.
Both family doctors in the IMO and in the Irish College of General Practitioners are being warned to look out for the infection. Children under the age of five and adults over 60 are most at risk.
The HPSC warns that prompt diagnosis and treatment are essential to avoid death and complications, and in some cases surgically removing infected soft tissue "may be life-saving."