Saturday 21 October 2017

Bailey's lawyers want files to back up malice claim

Tim Healy

LAWYERS for Ian Bailey want the State to hand over documents which they say support claims of malice against him in the garda investigation into the murder in west Cork of French film-maker Sophie Toscan du Plantier.

Mr Bailey's solicitor Frank Buttimer said materials disclosed by the State for Mr Bailey's successful appeal against extradition suggested at least one senior garda may have tried to put pressure on the DPP to prosecute Mr Bailey.

The materials also referred to the Garda Siochana "engendering hysteria" in the local community due to the portrayal of Mr Bailey, via leaks to the media and otherwise, "as a ruthless and unrestrained killer", Mr Buttimer said in an affidavit to the High Court.

That induced "blind panic" in at least one witness as early as February 1997 and caused concern in the DPP's office that a climate would be created in which witnesses "became suggestible", he said.

Incriminating

The disclosed material was also probative of Mr Bailey's claim of malice as it was suggested a named garda may have offered "cash, clothes and hash" to a witness to obtain incriminating evidence against Mr Bailey, he added.

Mr Buttimer is also seeking documents for Mr Bailey's civil action against the Garda Commissioner and State claiming damages for alleged wrongful arrest and personal injuries.

He is seeking all correspondence between former DPP Eamonn Barnes; Mr Barnes's successors James Hamilton and Claire Loftus; the Minister for Justice; and any garda concerning Mr Bailey.

Mr Buttimer also wants all "unedited and/or unredacted" emails between Mr Barnes and those parties supporting the recommendation in a report from Mr Barnes "that a person be prosecuted in relation to the garda investigation into Ian Bailey".

Mr Bailey (56), a former journalist and law graduate who last year won his appeal against his extradition to France in connection with the 1996 murder, has always denied any involvement in it. As well as his civil action, he has made a complaint to the Garda Ombudsman.

Irish Independent

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