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Constitutional Law

Constitutional law deals with the basic rights and rules set out in the Constitution of the Republic of Ireland. The Constitution is also frequently referred to by its Gaelic title Bunreacht na hEireann. Laws passed by the government of the day, or actions of state agencies or officials, may be found to be unconstitutional. Only the Superior Courts of the state- The High Court and The Supreme Court- may make a decision on the constitutionality of any disputed matter. The lower courts- The Circuit Courts and the District Courts- are then obliged to follow the interpretations of the Constitution provided by the Superior Courts. Bunreacht na hEireann is not the the supreme legal document in the Republic of Ireland. If there is a conflict between any provision of the Constitution and a provision of European Union Law, EU law will prevail.

Woof, Woof

Ireland has strange Regulators, as we have learned. For example, what is the Irish Data Protection Commissioner doing about the Google “Street View” scandal? The scandal involved the deliberate collection, by Google, of wi-fi data, through its Street View vehicles. Google Street View is part of Google Maps and Google Earth. It uses adapted vehicles (mostly cars) to travel through public locations in at least thirty countries in the world. The vehicles have cameras to record a 360 degree view […]


Digital Rights Ireland: High Court Submissions

The High Court is seeking submissions from the parties to the Digital Rights Ireland case. See the Pleadings HERE. See the most recent post on the issue HERE The Court is seeking suggestions as to the form of questions to be submitted to the European Court of Justice. DRI has, in its Statement of Claim, suggested a form of question or questions to be submitted. Currently, DRI has furnished its expanded draft of the terms of the Reference to be […]


Digital Rights Ireland Data Retention Case

DRI’s case is brought in its own name, but it is an action with implications for every citizen of Ireland, whether they know it or not.


Digital Rights Ireland update

On 5th May 2010 the High Court delivered its (unapproved) judgment. The Court confirmed its agreement to refer the EU law issue in the case to the European Court of Justice. The Court refused the State’s applications seeking denial of locus standi to the Plaintiff and/or seeking security for costs.


Digital Rights Update: Judgment Reserved

THE HIGH COURT 2006 No. 3785P Between DIGITAL RIGHTS IRELAND LIMITED Plaintiff And THE MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS, MARINE AND NATURAL RESOURCES, THE MINISTER FOR JUSTICE, EQUALITY AND LAW REFORM, THE COMMISSIONER FOR THE GARDA SIOCHANA, IRELAND AND THE ATTORNEY GENERAL Defendants UPDATE (21/4/2010) 1. Digital Rights Ireland Ltd. has taken a case against the Irish Government as seen HERE. 2. McGarr Solicitors act for Digital Rights Ireland Ltd. 3. DRI brought an application to the High Court to seek a […]



Of course, Article 28 (3) is out of date; no State actor in international affairs follows the convention and legal obligation to “declare” war – they just wage it. Nevertheless, as a purely internal Irish affair, to take a hands-off approach to Executive action on such a question, where the Executive can seek the assent of the Dail, but does not, is not in the national interest.


Willie O’Dea

But we should see him as he is, warts and all. We should not have to endure the consequence of more mythical thinking by the judiciary (and the Law Library). The Attorney General is down in the arena with everybody else. He fights for his clients. He represents their interests. He should not be accorded the deference he gets from the judiciary and the Law Library.


The Club of One

The decision has had bad effects. It endorses a damaging idea of Government; one where the freedom of the Executive to act without challenge and with impunity is put at a higher value than the principle that the interests of the electorate are paramount.


Judge School

Either way, it behooves the media to at least ask what is taught at Judge school. It might tell us something about Ireland we need to know, and God knows, we know very little.


Habeas Corpus

McGarr Solicitors act for Jonathan O’Donnell. Jonathan O’Donnell was, apparently, arrested on the morning of 25th June 2009 in Broadhaven Bay, County Mayo by Gardai from Mayo Division.