Thursday 29 September 2016

Contempt proceedings against INM in relation to Ian Bailey coverage struck out at High Court

Published 20/05/2015 | 13:39

Ian Bailey arrives at the Four Courts in Dublin where the jury in a long-running lawsuit brought by the Englishman who claims gardai conspired to frame him for the unsolved murder of a French film-maker had begun its deliberations, March 30 (Brian Lawless/PA Wire)
Ian Bailey arrives at the Four Courts in Dublin where the jury in a long-running lawsuit brought by the Englishman who claims gardai conspired to frame him for the unsolved murder of a French film-maker had begun its deliberations, March 30 (Brian Lawless/PA Wire)

Proceedings alleging contempt of court against Independent Newspapers in connection with coverage of proceedings brought by Ian Bailey have been struck out on consent at the High Court with no order.

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Shane Murphy SC, for Independent Newspapers (Ireland) and Independent News and Media plc, told Mr Justice John Hedigan today it was agreed the proceedings could be struck out with no order. The judge made the strike out order.

The contempt proceedings were initiated last year but were regularly adjourned while the civil action for damages by Mr Bailey against the Garda Commissioner and State, which opened last November, proceeded before a High Court jury.

Last March, the jury rejected Mr Bailey's claims that gardai conspired to frame him for the murder of Sophie Toscan du Plantier in west Cork in late 1996 by way of threats or inducements to witness Marie Farrell to make allegedly false statements. An order requiring Mr Bailey to pay all the legal costs of the 64 day case, estimated at up to €5m, was later made.

Mr Justice Hedigan was also told today the separate civil action by Mr Bailey's partner Jules Thomas, in which she is claiming damages over alleged wrongful arrest by garda investigating the du Plantier murder, could be adjourned on consent to the next court list to fix dates for jury trials on June 23rd.

Last month, lawyers for the Garda Comissioner and State indicated they intended to apply to have Ms Thomas's claim for wrongful arrest on dates in 1997 and 2000 struck out on grounds it was brought outside the applicable six year legal time limit. That application will be heard next month.

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