SOLICITORS and gardaí entering the country's new criminal court complex will have to queue at security even though their wig-wearing colleagues, barristers and judges, will be spared the indignity.

The Courts Service confirmed that everyone who passes through the front door of the building will have to go through a security point, which can involve a thorough inspection of their belongings.

However, barristers, judges, Courts Service workers and catering staff at the complex will be able to use a separate entrance and merely flash a card against a digital reader.

Solicitors and gardaí have complained about the plans, believing it will lead to lengthy queues and allow sensitive material to be inspected.

One solicitor said: "It seems bizarre that some of the people who work in this office every day are not considered a security risk and others are.

"If a solicitor is going through security with documents, will they be in­spected? If a garda is bringing an evidence bag through with a gun that was used in a crime, will that be considered un­safe?"

A statement from the Courts Service said that a facility for 'cardholders' such as solicitors and gardaí was being made available separately to the general public.

It said: "Admission to the administrative block for those who have offices or work there is via another entrance and ID cards are programmed to allow access to the building via this entrance.

"As it does not give direct access to the courts or other public parts of the building, solicitors and gardaí have no cause to use this entrance.

"Barristers who use this entrance do so to access the two floors of offices they have rented in this part of the complex. Solicitors have not taken any office space there. Catering staff who use this entrance work permanently in this part of the building and have been security-cleared by gardaí.

"If catering staff, courts service staff or barristers use the front entrance they have to go through the security portal. Everyone who enters via this entrance is treated the same."

The Courts Service said that vastly superior conditions were being offered to everybody in the new Criminal Courts, including solicitors.

Consultation rooms have been provided alongside each of the 22 court rooms for use by lawyers and their clients, meaning they no longer have to speak in corridors.

Several other consultation rooms have also been provided in a basement holding area for defendants who are already in custody.