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Tag Archives: High Court

Clare woman awarded €1.4m after slipping on grapes

A woman left permanently disabled with severe back and other injuries after slipping on grapes while shopping in a Tesco store in Kilrush has been awarded €1.4m damages by a High Court judge. Mr Justice Anthony Barr made the award to Patricia Walsh (48), Shannondale Stud, Rehy, Carrigaholt, over the incident in the Tesco store at Kilrush, on August 28th 2012. A stay applies on the award pending an appeal on condition €500,000 is paid out now, plus 75% of Ms Walsh’s legal costs. Ms Walsh, represented by Edward Walsh SC and Pat Quinn SC, instructed by Carmody & Co Solicitors, sued Tesco Ireland which admitted liability on the first day of the case. It ran for seven days and involved evidence from 15 doctors among others. In his detailed judgment, the judge said it was clear, as a result of the fall, Ms Walsh suffered a serious injury to the muscles and ligaments of her lower back which caused …

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Legal challenge to Killaloe bypass fails

AN environmentalist has lost his legal challenge to a grant of permission for a 2km bypass around Killaloe. Peter Sweetman, along with an environmental protection company, The Swans and the Snails Ltd, claimed the project, which includes construction of a 170 metre long bridge over the River Shannon, will result in the direct, permanent, and irreversible destruction of a woodlands habitat. The High Court, with Mr Justice Paul McDermott presiding, heard the habitat in question, an alluvial wet willow-alder-ash woodland, is located on the western side [Clare bank] of the proposed bridge. Mr Sweetman and the company argued permission for the project should never have been granted to Clare County Council by An Bord Pleanála. It was claimed the board failed to carry out an adequate assessment under the EU Habitats Directive. Mr Sweetman, of Bunahowen Cashel, County Galway, and the company, with an address at Rossport, South Ballina, County Mayo, claimed an environmental impact assessment carried out by the board …

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Supreme Court refuses Derrybrien appeal

THE Supreme Court has refused, on grounds including it does not make “futile orders”, to declare that planning decisions relating to a windfarm development on a mountain site at Derrybrien did not permit deforestation of more than 115,000 trees. The site was the scene of a massive bog slide in October 2003 when nearly half a million tonnes of peat and debris was displaced, causing considerable damage to the surrounding area and pollution to a nearby fishing river. Following a 2008 decision of the European Court of Justice that Ireland had not fulfilled its obligations under a 1985 EU Directive related to assessment of the effects of certain public and private projects on the environment, a local residents group appealed in 2009 against the 2005 refusal of the High Court to grant injunctions stopping the deforestation. The Chief Justice said, while the Supreme Court was prepared to approach the appeal “on the assumption the planning permission did not cover or …

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Challenge to same-sex marriage referendum fails

THE latest legal challenge by a County Clare man against the result of the same-sex marriage referendum has been dismissed by the High Court. Gerry Walshe, an electrician, of Lisdeen, Kilkee asked the High Court to quash the Referendum Returning Officer’s decision to certify the result last August, which had the effect of formally confirming the outcome of the ballot. In a ruling on Wednesday evening, Ms Justice Margaret Heneghan dismissed Walshe’s demands for several orders that would have frozen proposed new legislation currently before Dáil Éireann enabling same-sex couples to marry. The Judge described as misconceived Mr Walshe’s interpretation of Returning Officer Riona Ní Fhlanghaile’s statutory function to sign the certificate confirming the result. The Judge also awarded the State its legal costs against Mr Walshe, an application Mr Walshe had opposed. He also sought orders staying any further actions being taken in relation to the Same Sex Marriage referendum result until his case has been determined. Mr Walshe, …

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New challenge on same sex marriage decision

A FRESH legal challenge is to be brought against the result of the same sex marriage referendum. The latest challenge has been brought by Mr Gerry Walshe, an electrician, from Lisdeen, Kilkee The Supreme Court last week refused to permit separate legal actions brought by both Mr Walshe and Mr Maurice Lyons from Callan in County Kilkenny bring further appeals against the rejection of their challenges to the Yes result of the same-sex marriage referendum. The court said, “It would not be necessary in the interests of justice that there be an appeal to the Supreme Court.” However in a new application, where Mr Walshe will ask the High Court for permission to bring proceedings against the State by way of judicial review, will be made before the duty Judge at today’s (Tuesday) vacation sitting of the Court. The latest action is understood to relate to the decision by the State to issue and sign the final referendum certificate in …

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Clarecare in High Court crux

MORE elderly people with high-dependency needs are waiting longer periods for specialised home care packages due to a High Court crux. There are at least 170 local people on a public waiting list who are medically eligible for home help hours but cannot access them following successive cutbacks in funding, totalling an estimated €1 million, for Clarecare in recent years. Since the cuts started in 2009, the reduced funding allocated to Clarecare has seen its annual home help delivery drop by about 30,000 hours annually from a peak of over 200,000 in 2009 to about 170,000, which is now delivered by 370 home helps this year. Clarecare general manager, Fiacra Hensey, said the delay in finalising a High Court case, taken by private home care providers in relation to the provision of home care, is creating a waiting list. The HSE Mid-West said it is not in a position to comment on a matter relating to a legal challenge, while …

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High Court quashes sacking of detective garda

THE High Court has quashed a decision to dismiss a detective garda, who had admitted breaching garda rules concerning the handling of informants. However, Mr Justice Iseult O’Malley said internal disciplinary proceedings against Limerick-based Detective Garda Brian Culbert from Sixmilebridge should be reheard by a garda board of inquiry established to investigate allegations he had committed serious breaches of discipline regulations. The High Court heard that Culbert had been involved in the investigation of extremely serious crime in the Limerick area. As part of his work, Detective Culbert acted as a handler for an informant. During the course of his work, it was alleged the detective breached garda rules as to how informants are handled. The detective was ordered by his superiors to stop. However, in what was a complex situation, he ignored those orders. As a result, Detective Culbert was charged with breaching garda disciplinary rules and an internal garda board of inquiry was set up to investigate the …

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From ‘Champion to bestsellers list

CLARE-born journalist, Ann O’Loughlin has seen her debut novel, The Ballroom Café, go to number four on the Amazon Kindle bestseller list, even before its official launch in the UK and Ireland last Thursday. The Ballroom Café is set at the height of the recession in Ireland in a crumbling mansion, where two elderly sisters, Ella and Roberta O’Callaghan, live alone with their secrets, memories and mutual hatred. Long estranged by a dark family tragedy, they communicate only by terse notes. But when the sisters are threatened with bankruptcy, Ella defies Roberta’s wishes and takes matters into her own hands, converting the mansion’s old ballroom into a café. Much to Roberta’s displeasure, the café is a hit and the sisters are reluctantly drawn back into village life. But Ella finds herself reliving painful memories, when Debbie, an American woman searching for her birth mother, begins working at the café. The sisters find themselves caught up in an adoption scandal that …

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