OVER 100 pubs across Ireland could face prosecution after they were accused of breaching the regulations which allowed them to reopen.
Pubs which serve food have been allowed to open since 29 June, however there are strict rules which the licensed premises must adhere to.
Customers must purchase a 'substantial meal' costing at least €9, and there are time restrictions and social distancing measures for each customer.
Pubs found breaching the rules could face prosecution, and Gardaí are performing regular checks on businesses to ensure they are following the public health guidelines.
It has now been revealed that since pubs and restaurants reopened at the end of June, there have been 126 suspected breaches of these rules,discovered by Gardaí under 'Operation Navigation'.
In a statement, Gardaí acknowledged that there is "widespread compliance by licensed premises", however have been found to be in breach of the rules, with 14 breaches identified between 4 and 9 August alone.
The pubs in question could face prosecution, and files are being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecution in all cases.
It is understood that the most common breach of the rules is alcohol being served without the purchase of a €9 meal.
There have been stark warnings this week that more localised lockdowns could come into effect if the number of new Covid-19 cases continues to rise-- Kildare, Laois and Offaly have had restrictions reimposed following multiple outbreaks linked to meat and food processing factories.
Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn confirmed that there was 'no guarantee' that the lockdowns would not be extended further than the initial two weeks, and that restrictions could be reimposed in other counties.