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Doherty welcomes Supreme Court ruling on Denis O’Brien appeal

5 March, 2019 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin TD Pearse Doherty has welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss Denis O’Brien’s appeal over statements made in the Dáil by both Deputy Doherty and Deputy Catherine Murphy.

Speaking today, Teachta Doherty said;

“This is a big week for both the freedom of the press and for parliamentary democracy.

“The statement I made in the Dáil was made in the public interest and in good faith.

“Today’s Supreme Court judgement is extremely welcome and reinforces parliamentary privilege.

“I shudder to think of the effect on parliamentary debate and our democracy if this judgement had gone the other way.  This would have a major chilling effect.

“This chilling effect is best illustrated by the fact that journalists themselves were unsure whether or not they could report the comments made by Catherine Murphy at the time.

“While I defend my right as a parliamentarian to use privilege, it should always be used in the right manner and only ever in the public interest.

“The CPP ruled that I did not abuse privilege and I am happy that now both the High Court and the Supreme Court have refused Denis O’Brien’s attempt to overturn that ruling.” 

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