Offences

The Act provides for a four-fold categorisation of offences into Categories 1 to 4. Throughout the Act, offences are, as created, categorised as attracting a particular category of penalty.

In Section 871, Chapter 7 of Part 14, those penalties are set out:

  • Category 1 offence – conviction on indictment can result in a term of imprisonment of up to 10 years or a fine of up to €500,000 or both;
  • Category 1 offence - summary conviction can result in a class A fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both;
  • Category 2 offence – conviction on indictment can result in a term of imprisonment of up to five years or a fine of up to €50,000 or both;
  • Category 2 offence - summary conviction can result in a class A fine or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months or both;
  • Category 3 offence – a summary offence only, attracting a term of imprisonment of up to six months and a “Class A fine” (or both); and
  • Category 4 offence – also a summary offence only, punishable by the imposition of a Class A fine.

A “Class A fine” is a fine within the meaning of the Fines Act 2010 (i.e. a fine not exceeding €5,000).