Belfast lawyer pursuing 20 cases against Gardaí

The cases allege wrongdoing in investigations ranging from Fraud to Murder.

Belfast lawyer pursuing 20 cases against Gardaí

Image: RollingNews.ie

A Belfast-based human rights law firm has taken on 20 miscarriage of justice cases against An Garda Síochana.

The Sunday Business Post originally reported that Human Rights Law Firm, KRW Law, has taken on the cases.

The cases allege wrongdoing in investigations ranging from Fraud to Murder.

Solicitor Kevin Winters has described the lawsuits as "evidence of ingrained systemic human rights failures within the Irish justice system".

"We've just recently taken instruction on a raft of cases, at the heart of which is a serious failure to address Article 2 issues," he said on Newstalk Breakfast, referring to the article outlining the right to life.

"There are four cases in particular - Nugent, Tuohy, Clancy and Kelly - at the heart of which is a a serious, systemic failure to investigate murder, allegations from family members that there was a cover-up, misdirected investigations and treating the families with contempt."

Mr Winters said these families are entitled to proper, thorough investigations.

"We're looking at human rights issues on the back of a huge set of judicial precedents, where accountability was at the centre stage of many cases before the domestic courts here and the Supreme Court of Human Rights. 

"We have a back catalogue of much intense human rights-based litigation, which doesn't really exist to the same extent when it comes to the scrutiny of Gardaí [...] There's a deficit there."

Maurice McCabe

On the Maurice McCabe inquiry, Mr Winters said it is the latest culmination of a series of problems within policing.

"The McCabe inquiry comes off the back of a series of other inquiries and issues [...] It's not as if this latest concern has arisen out of nowhere."

Mr Winters also warned of public fatigue surrounding inquiries, highlighting the issue of public confidence in policing.