Why Irish police are investigating a British actor's comments on God

British author and actor Stephen Fry is being investigated by Irish police for comments he made about God two years ago.

"Why should I respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid god who creates a world which is so full of injustice and pain?" Fry said on TV.

Fry had already established himself as an atheist before his comments on Ireland's public television.

But Ireland's constitution bans blasphemy, and a law passed in 2009 protects religions from "abusive or insulting" comments.

19 PHOTOS
Stephen Fry
See Gallery
Stephen Fry
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Stephen Fry attends the World Premiere of 'The Hobbit: The Battle OF The Five Armies' at Odeon Leicester Square on December 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 01: Stephen Fry attends the World Premiere of 'The Hobbit: The Battle OF The Five Armies' at Odeon Leicester Square on December 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 07: Stephen Fry attends the BFI London Film Festival IWC Gala Dinner in honour of the BFI at Battersea Evolution Marquee on October 7, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Getty Images for BFI / IWC)
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 07: Stephen Fry attends the IWC Gala dinner in honour of the BFI at Battersea Evolution on October 7, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 21: Stephen Fry attends a screening of 'Salome and Wilde Salome' at BFI Southbank on September 21, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 21: Stephen Fry attends a screening of 'Salome and Wilde Salome' at BFI Southbank on September 21, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 21: Stephen Fry attends a screening of 'Salome and Wilde Salome' at BFI Southbank on September 21, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 11: Stephen Fry attends the annual BGC Global Charity Day at BGC Partners on September 11, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Stephen Fry and Eric Idle pose backstage on the opening night of 'Monty Python Live (Mostly)' on July 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 21: Stephen Fry attends day five of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 21, 2014 in Ascot, England. (Photo by Alan Crowhurst/Getty Images for Ascot Racecourse)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 23: Stephen Fry attends the World Premiere of 'Seve' at Empire Leicester Square on June 23, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Presenter Stephen Fry attends the opening night of 'Monty Python Live (Mostly)' on July 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 01: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Stephen Fry appears on stage during the opening night of 'Monty Python Live (Mostly)' on July 1, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 17: (L-R) Stephen Fry poses with cast member Mark Heap following a performance of 'Jeeves & Wooster in Perfect Nonsense' at the Duke Of Yorks Theatre on June 17, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 08: Actor Stephen Fry attends American Theatre Wing's 68th Annual Tony Awards at Radio City Music Hall on June 8, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Jim Spellman/WireImage)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 17: Stephen Fry poses backstage following a performance of 'Jeeves & Wooster in Perfect Nonsense' at the Duke Of Yorks Theatre on June 17, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 15: Stephen Fry arrives at the Baltic Bar and Restaurant ahead of The Old Vic's Clarence Darrow Final Night Gala on June 15, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for The Old Vic)
24: LIVE ANOTHER DAY: Stephen Fry in the '1:00 PM - 2:00 PM' episode of 24: LIVE ANOTHER DAY airing Monday, May 12, 2014 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. (Photo by FOX via Getty Images)
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

The maximum penalty is a fine over $25,000.

A member of the public reported Fry's comments to police in 2015. No real action took place until a couple weeks ago when a detective started looking into the case.

SEE MORE: Trump Signs 'Religious Liberty' Order, ACLU Calls It Discriminatory

The man who brought up the case told Irish media he wasn't offended by Fry's comments, but said he felt reporting the case was his civic duty.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Entertainment Insider by AOL to get the hottest pop culture news delivered straight to your inbox!

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.