Monday 5 December 2016

David Quinn: Badly clouded judgment has no place in the media

Published 25/11/2011 | 05:00

Here's one question among all the others that the government-ordered investigation into RTE's 'Mission to Prey' programme should consider: had that programme 'merely' accused Fr Kevin Reynolds of raping a minor, but not of fathering her child, what would have happened?

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Would Fr Reynolds have won his libel action? Indeed, would he have taken a libel action at all?

The accusation that Fr Reynolds raped a minor was not scientifically testable. It would have been Fr Reynolds's word against that of the alleged 'victim' and in the current climate a priest would have a hard job convincing a jury of his innocence.

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