High Court Apology
AN apology was read out in the High Court Court yesterday by counsel for Independent Newspapers (Ireland )Limited in a libel case concerning an article on the front page of the Irish Independent on May 22 2002 under the heading "Councillor Named in Dump Scandal" to the effect that Independent Wicklow Councillor Tommy Cullen was guilty of encouraging and coercing dump owners John O Reilly into making a fraudulent claim for more than €1m against the Council.
Counsel for Independent Newspapers Mr Douglas Clarke said the report published by the newspaper group was based upon information that "we then believed to be reliable. We have however subsequently ascertained and now recognise that there was no foundation to these allegations and we regret that they were ever made. We are happy to take this opportunity of correcting our error and of expressing to Mr Cullen our regret for any distress or embarrassment caused to him by the publication of the original article."
Ms Justice Mary Laffoy was told the case had been settled and could be struck out. No details of the settlement were disclosed in court. The case had been scheduled to go before a High Court jury later this month.