Saturday 20 January 2018

Liam Adams 'would not get fair trial', court told

Brian Kavanagh

The brother of Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams has claimed he has already been "widely condemned" as a guilty man as he fights extradition to the North.

Liam Adams (55) is wanted in the North to answer five charges of rape, seven charges of indecent assault and six charges of gross indecency against his daughter, Aine Tyrell (38).

Ms Tyrell has waived her right to anonymity.

It is claimed the sexual offences occurred at various addresses in Belfast between March 1977 and March 1983 when the alleged victim was aged between four and 10 years old.

It is alleged some of the offences occurred when Ms Tyrell's mother was out of the family's house.

Aileen Donnelly, for the State, told the High Court yesterday that Ms Tyrell first gave a written statement to the RUC in 1987 in the company of her mother Sarah Adams.

Sarah Adams told police she felt her daughter would not be able to proceed with the case as the pressure "would be too great". In 2007 Aine Tyrell told police that she wished to proceed with the complaint as she felt ready to go to court and confront her father.

Mr Adams, with a last address at Bernagh Avenue in Belfast, turned himself into gardai in Dublin in March 2010 after a European Arrest Warrant was issued by the PSNI. He denies all the charges against him.

Fair

Michael O'Higgins told the court that his client would not receive a fair trial in Northern Ireland because of pre-trial publicity, the delay in bringing the charges against him and legal issues such as the composition of any potential jury.

In a sworn affidavit, Mr Adams stated that there had been "widespread and extraordinary" media coverage of the allegations.

Mr O'Higgins submitted that if Mr Adams was returned to the North it was likely he would be a protected prisoner with special needs requiring that he be locked up for 23 hours a day.

Mr Justice John Edwards adjourned the hearing, which is expected to last two days, until tomorrow.

Irish Independent

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