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Covid screens 'impede judge's hearing'

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Comments: Judge Deirdre Murphy. Photo: Collins

Comments: Judge Deirdre Murphy. Photo: Collins

Comments: Judge Deirdre Murphy. Photo: Collins

A High Court judge said perspex screens put on some judicial benches in response to the Covid-19 pandemic are affecting the ability to hear.

Ms Justice Deirdre Murphy made the remark when hearing an application in Court One, one of the original Four Courts.

She said the perspex screens, placed directly in front of the judge and their registrar, are half an inch thick and affect their ability to hear.

Similar comments have been made by lawyers in a number of cases.

Last week another judge, while sitting in a courtroom streaming with sunlight, said that the screen was distracting as he could see his own reflection.

The screens do not run the entire length of the bench but are placed directly before the judges and registrars.

Ms Justice Murphy granted leave to a Limerick prison officer to challenge a decision of the prison service that an injury, sustained when a prisoner resisted attempts to take him from his cell, was not a workplace injury.

David Kennedy SC, for prison officer Michael Delaney, argued his client was entitled to enquire into the relevant decision-making process. The case will come back before the court next month.

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