Wednesday 13 December 2017

Barristers in FitzPatrick trial were paid €1m

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) paid the three barristers who prosecuted Seán FitzPatrick more than €1m in the longest-running criminal trial in the history of the State.

New figures released by the DPP in response to a Freedom of Information request show that lead prosecutor in the case Dominic McGinn SC received €517,215, which included €96,715 in VAT, for his work in the high-profile case.

The three barristers in the prosecution team, Mr McGinn, John Byrne BL and Diana Stuart BL, received total payments of €1.075m.

However, the legal bill to the taxpayer for the 126-day trial for the two sets of barristers on the prosecution and defence teams is likely to be more than €2m.

This arises from the cost of Mr FitzPatrick's three-strong barrister team being funded by the taxpayer as he was granted legal aid in the case and barristers on the criminal legal aid scheme avail of the same rates as those employed by the DPP.

The trial ended after trial judge Judge John Aylmer directed the jury to acquit Mr FitzPatrick on all charges.

The new figures from the DPP show Mr Byrne received €369,720, which included €69,135 in Vat, and Ms Stuart received €189,007 that includes €35,343 in Vat.

The DPP FOI unit states the case cost "does not include the cost of DPP staff assigned to the case or preliminary work".

It has previously been revealed the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) paid more than €300,000 for expert testimony for the trial.

Irish Independent

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