Review underway to make rape trial system fairer for victims

Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan.

A review is underway to make the rape trial system fairer for victims.

The Justice Minister ordered a review in the wake of rugby players Paddy Jackson and Stuart Oldings trial in Belfast earlier this year.

Both men were acquitted, but the system was criticised after the complainant had to endure lengthy cross examination without any legal representation.

The Department of Justice is examining ways to protect victims with procedural details due by the end of the summer.

Noeleen Blackwell, CEO of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre says any improvement to the current system is welcome.

She said: "In those cases, it is one person's word against another and where one person is represented by three skilled, experienced lawyers and the other is on their own knowing very little about the rest of the case in general, there is a real inequality in the way that each of them is heard by the jury."

- Digital Desk

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