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Lisa Smith

International witnesses in Lisa Smith trial can give evidence by video-link

Special Criminal Court

(Pictured: Ms Lisa Smith. Photo: Collins)

International witnesses in the case of former Defence Forces member Lisa Smith, who is accused of ISIS membership, will not be forced to travel to Ireland due to the Covid pandemic, the Special Criminal Court has ruled.

Today at the three-judge court, presiding judge Mr Justice Tony Hunt said the court would allow evidence to be called from three witnesses in the case by video-link as it was either “undesirable or not possible” for them to travel to Ireland. Two of the witnesses are in Australia while another is in the US.

Ms Smith’s defence had objected ….read more

Four Courts

Man imprisoned over alleged wrongful rape charge sues State

High Court

A man who was released after spending over a year in prison on a charge of raping a woman who had previously fabricated a similar claim, has sued various entities of the State.

The woman accused the man at the centre of the action of raping her following a party they, and others, had attended in February 2009.

A large quantity of alcohol was consumed at the party, it is claimed.

The man, an EU national who currently lives in his native county, at all times vehemently denied the rape allegation.

Arising out of her complaint, the man was interviewed by Garda ….read more

Eoghan Harris

Eoghan Harris had sole control over Twitter account, defamation case hears

High Court

(Pictured: Mr Eoghan Harris. Photo: Collins)

Former Sunday Independent columnist Eoghan Harris has said in a sworn statement before High Court that he alone was behind the ‘Barbara J Pym’ Twitter account, which two journalists allege made malicious and defamatory posts about them.

The High Court heard this appears to have contradicted earlier statements and comments made by Mr Harris in an interview with RTE radio earlier this year, where he said that other, unnamed persons had contributed to the account.

Twitter has also argued before the court that it should not be compelled to provide the two journalists with all the details ….read more

Paul McDermott

Accused attending court in PPE would undermine fair trial rights, judge finds

Central Criminal Court

(Pictured: Mr Justice Paul McDermott. Photo: Collins)

by Peter Doyle

The forthcoming trial of a remand prisoner has been delayed after it emerged that the accused would have to appear before the court in full personal protective equipment (PPE). 

Adjourning the case, Mr Justice Paul McDermott said he was worried the man’s constitutional right to a fair trial would be at risk by the requirement to wear a hazmat suit during proceedings.  

The named prisoner is being held at Cloverhill Prison, Dublin, where staff are currently trying to combat an outbreak of the disease. 

Earlier this week, the prison’s governor, Anthony Harris, told the ….read more

Four Courts dome

Challenges to two phone masts in south Dublin

High Court

Two separate High Court challenges have been brought against decisions by An Bord Pleanala in relation to two telecommunications masts in South County Dublin.

The actions have been brought by two bodies representing locals who are opposed to plans to develop a mast near Saggart Village and one constructed in Kingswood in South County Dublin.

Both groups, represented in their actions by Oisin Collins SC, instructed by solicitor Aoife O’Connell, have brought judicial review actions against An Bord Pleanala.

Both challenges are brought on grounds including that the board’s decisions were contrary to its own inspector’s recommendations.

In the first of the two unrelated ….read more

Hazel Fitzpatrick

Identification of Kriegel murderer showed 'utter contempt' for law

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court

(Pictured: Hazel Fitzpatrick. Photo: Collins)

A judge has said that a mother-of-two who identified one of the boys convicted of murdering Ana Kriégel on her Facebook page showed “utter contempt” for the law.

In June 2019, Hazel Fitzpatrick (25) posted a screenshot of a photo that identified Boy A on the day after both juveniles were convicted of murdering Ana Kriégel in May 2018.

Fitzpatrick, who has no other criminal convictions, told gardaí that she thought it was “wrong they are protected when she [Ana Kriégel] was not protected”.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that there was no premeditation, that Fitzpatrick acted out of ….read more

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