Independent News and Media has sought to deliver what was described as a "knockout blow" to an attempt to appoint inspectors to look into its affairs.
The Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement is investigating an alleged data breach at Ireland’s largest newspaper publisher.
Reporters from many of INM’s titles, which include the Sunday Independent, the Irish Independent and the Sunday World, were in the High Court today and one of its former journalists Sam Smyth was also there.
He’s one of 19 ‘persons of interest’ whom the Director of Corporate Enforcement claims had their data interrogated by outside companies.
Ian Drennan claims the data was removed in October 2014 and he says the purpose of removing it from INM’s server “remains unclear”.
The President of the High Court was due to hear an application to have two inspectors appointed to look into INM’s affairs in what was described today as a “fact finding exercise”.
But Mr. Justice Peter Kelly was told INM intends to apply for permission to challenge the decision to bring the application in the first place.
If successful, Mr. Justice Kelly said it will mean the Director of Corporate Enforcement won’t even get to the “starting blocks”.
An application for leave to have a judicial review will be heard next month.