Convicted thief freed following striking down of parts of suspended sentences law

Two other prisoners with similar applications are also due to have their cases heard today

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A convicted thief has been freed from prison as a result of the striking down of parts of a law governing suspended sentences.

Two other applications are also due to be heard before the High Court today.

Judges can suspend all or part of a sentence, and can reactivate it if a person commits another crime while the suspension still hangs over them.

Last Tuesday, Mr Justice Michael Moriarty declared as unconstitutional two subsections of Section 99 of the Criminal Justice Act.

They deal with this reactivation of a suspended sentence.

A convicted thief will be released from Cloverhill prison today after successfully challenging his detention following Judge Moriarty’s ruling.

In January 2014, he was handed a three year sentence with the final year suspended.

Less than 12 months after his release, he admitted to a separate offence under the Domestic Violence Act and was sent back to prison.

His challenge was due to be heard this morning, but the High Court was told there was no objection from the State to him being freed.

Two other prisoners with similar applications are also due to have their cases heard today.