Saturday 20 January 2018

O'Brien free to fight Moriarty decisions

Tim Healy

BUSINESSMAN Denis O'Brien was yesterday given permission to challenge a decision by the Moriarty Tribunal to limit his legal team's questioning of an expert witness.

Mr O'Brien, of Sliema, Malta, claimed Mr Justice Michael Moriarty's decision to limit the amount of time and the extent of the questions his lawyers could ask Danish telecommunications expert Professor Michael Andersen was unfair and had violated his rights.

Prof Andersen was a witness as part of the tribunal's investigation into the awarding of Ireland's second mobile phone licence to Esat Digifone in the mid-1990s. He gave his evidence to the tribunal between October 26 and November 5.

Mr O'Brien wants an order of the High Court to have Prof Andersen recalled so he can be fully cross-examined by his lawyers without restraints.

Yesterday, Mr Justice Michael Peart granted leave to Mr O'Brien to bring judicial review proceedings against the sole member of the tribunal, Mr Justice Moriarty. The application was granted on an ex-parte (one side only) basis and was made returnable before the court later this month.

Mr O'Brien wants to quash the tribunal's decisions of November 2 prohibiting his legal team from cross-examining Prof Andersen in relation to meetings he had with the tribunal's legal representatives.

The court also heard yesterday that Mr O'Brien intends to seek an injunction restraining the tribunal from publishing part two of its final report until such time as he is allowed to cross-examine Prof Andersen.

Irish Independent

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