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Sirens & Gavels

Judge jails man for taking call in court

DUBLIN (AP) — Letting your telephone ring in a courtroom is rarely a good idea. Taking the call is worse.

A Northern Ireland man received a brief jail sentence Wednesday after his phone rang, the judge told him to turn it off, but instead he took the call and had a brief chat.

The judge ordered 36-year-old Paddy Sweeney behind bars for two hours, then fined him 200 pounds ($322) for willfully interrupting the court in Londonderry, Northern Ireland's second-largest city. Sweeney had been watching a civil trial at the time.

Sweeney could have faced a maximum penalty of one month in jail and a 2,500 pound ($4,025) fine.


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