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Judge to view files of men on dating site in vetting row

A WOMAN who runs a dating agency has been told by the court to allow a judge look at agency files on male clients.

The instruction arose from a case taken against the agency by a dissatisfied client Annemarie McBrearty.

Ms McBrearty (33) of Oldtown Letterkenny is suing Mary Mitchell of the Happy Matchmaker dating agency for €6,348.99 for negligence, breach of duty and fraudulent misrepresentation.

She claims that she paid €600 for 12 "introductions" in January 2009 and that the agency had advertised that "each prospective suitor" would be screened.

Ms McBrearty claimed that it became clear after four introductions that the prospective suitors had not been vetted or screened.

She alleges that as a result she was "groped, assaulted and battered without lawful excuse".

Donegal Circuit Court has ruled that a District Court Judge be allowed to see the files from male clients to decide whether they are relevant in a negligence and breach-of-duty action.

Proceedings have been delayed by a dispute over whether the files of four male clients should be made available.

Ms McBrearty won an order last December to be allowed see the files to prepare her case against Mitchell. Mitchell of Ballintra, Co Donegal, then lodged a Circuit Court appeal against the District Court order.

Now Circuit Court Judge Raymond Fullan has ordered that the case be returned to the District Court. He said the District Court judge should be able to inspect the files at its next sitting to come to a decision.