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Ivor Callely to apply for bail as he awaits High Court hearing

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Ivor Callely

Ivor Callely

Ivor Callely

JAILED former politician Ivor Callely is to apply for bail pending his High Court action aimed at overturning a refusal to grant him temporary release from prison.

The application will come before High Court President Nicholas Kearns tomorrow.

Callely (56) was jailed last July after admitting he he fraudulently claimed €4,207.45 in expenses from the Oireachtas on forged mobile phone invoices. He was sentenced to a total of five months in prison.

Last month the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald turned down Callely's application temporary release.

She was "of the view that the breach of trust and abuse of public funds by a member of the Oireachtas must be considered in the most serious terms and Mr Callely is not considered suitable for temporary release at this stage of his sentence."

Mr Callely claims the Minister's decision is unfair and he is not being treated the same as other prisoners, who have committed more serious crimes. The decision, he claims, flies in the face of or reason common sense and is unfair in the circumstances.

The Minister, he claims, has been unfairly influenced by his high profile, and the prospect of the adverse public reaction of the early release of a former politician.

Arising out of the Minister's refusal, Callely last week secured permission from the High Court to bring judicial review proceedings against the Minister and the Governor of Wheatfield  Prison.

In his action, the former FF TD and junior Minister seeks orders quashing the  decision to refuse him temporary release.

He also seeks orders including one directing the Minister to reconsider his application for temporary release.

He claims he is only being kept in prison because of his high profile.

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