Saturday 24 February 2018

Court rejects former embassy employee's claim

Tim Healy

THE High Court has rejected a former US embassy employee's action over her dismissal 25 years ago.

Ailish Nic Phaidin (60) claimed during her employment at the US embassy, Ballsbridge, she was pinned to a wall and assaulted in 1985.

On another occasion, 11 years earlier, she alleged a drug was put in her drink in the embassy bar and, when she woke up, she was in the home of an embassy official, where she claims she had been raped.

The circumstances surrounding the dismissal of Ms Nic Phaidin from the embassy were most unsatisfactory and hurtful, the president of the High Court said when he dismissed the case yesterday.

He said the manner of the treatment of Ms Nic Phaidin, who was interrogated before being offered the option of immediate dismissal or resignation, was disgraceful. "She has felt a burning sense of injustice for many years over the way she was treated by the US embassy. It was a view shared by the Department of Foreign Affairs and, I might add, it's a view I hold myself," he said.

But Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns said he could not make any assessment of whether the allegations Ms Nic Phaidin made on the alleged sexual assaults had anything to do with her dismissal as they had not been reported to the gardai.

Irish Independent

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