Tuesday 20 March 2018

Woman to face retrial over death of elderly mother

Tim Healy

THE trial of a 38-year-old woman charged with the manslaughter through neglect of her mother is set to go ahead after a High Court judge yesterday refused the woman leave to challenge her retrial.

The daughter of the late Evelyn Joel had sought permission from the High Court to bring a case aimed at preventing her re-trial on a charge of gross negligence manslaughter of her mother.

Evelyn Joel (59) died in hospital on January 7, 2006, a week after she was admitted there after being removed from her daughter Eleanor Joel's home in poor health.

The dead woman suffered from multiple sclerosis and had been living with her daughter in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, prior to her passing.


Yesterday Mr Justice Peter Charleton refused Eleanor Joel leave to challenge her retrial.

The judge said any matters that arose could be dealt with by application to the trial judge. Eleanor Joel's lawyers are now considering whether to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court.

Following Evelyn Joel's death, Eleanor Joel (38) and her partner Jonathan Costen (39) were charged with unlawfully killing Evelyn Joel by neglect. The couple denied the charges. Last year, following a seven-week trial at Wexford Circuit Criminal Court, a jury failed to reach a verdict in the case.

In her proceedings against the DPP, the Garda Commissioner, the State and the Attorney General, Eleanor Joel had claimed there was a serious risk the retrial would be unfair and contrary to her constitutional rights and rights under the European Convention on Human Rights. Mr Costen and the HSE were notice parties to the intended proceedings.

In her application, Eleanor Joel sought an order from the court preventing and restraining the respondents from taking any further steps in prosecuting her.

It was also claimed that the gardai failed to adequately investigate the circumstances of her mother's death and that their conclusions into who was responsible for Evelyn Joel's death were not based on thorough, objective and impartial analysis of all relevant elements.

Irish Independent

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