Conor McGregor caused a bit of a stir yesterday with an Instagram post which showed him sitting in one of his fleet of cars, believed to be in Crumlin, posing in a balaclava and toting what would appear to be an imitation firearm.
The post was captioned 'Put the fight game in the bag and step away from the vehicle' and we can assume the featherweight title contender didn't think much would come of it other than the likes and comments would roll in as usual.
And while that could well be the case, it seems this one may cause a slight bit of bother after Gardaí confirmed that they are 'investigating the circumstances surrounding the picture'.
McGregor has been pictured with airsoft guns in the past. However, judging by the Irish statue book, it would appear that the location of the photo may be what needs to be determined.
Under the Criminal Justice (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2009, the provision for the 'possession of a realistic firearm in a public place' states;
9A.— (1) Where a person, without lawful authority or reasonable excuse (the onus of proving which shall lie on him or her), has a realistic imitation firearm with him or her in any public place, that person shall be guilty of an offence.
(2) A person guilty of an offence under this section shall be liable:
(i) on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding €5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding twelve months or to both, or
(ii) on conviction on indictment, to a fine or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to both.
(3) In this section “ public place” includes any highway and any other premises or place to which at the material time the public have or are permitted to have access, whether on payment or otherwise, and includes any club premises and any train, vessel or vehicle used for the carriage of persons for reward.
(4) In this section and in sections 9B to 9G “ realistic imitation firearm” means a device that appears to the ordinary observer so realistic as to make it indistinguishable from a firearm.
What comes of this investigation remains to be seen but here's the post in question that McGregor may be regretting for some unwanted hassle and attention if nothing else.
And while none of that is ideal, at least McGregor has a shot at the lightweight title to look forward to after his much anticipated bout against Rafael dos Anjos was reportedly announced overnight.