Last month, McKevitt, aged 65, from Beech Park, Blackrock, Co Louth, sought an inquiry under Article 40 of the Constitution. He argued he was entitled to one third remission of his sentence for good behaviour and participating in prison activities. He was jailed for 20 years in 2003 for directing terrorism and membership of the Real IRA
Yesterday, McKevitt withdrew his Article 40 application following a ruling by the Supreme Court in a case where similar legal points had been raised. The court held the application ought to have been taken by way of judicial review.
Mr Justice Kevin Cross yesterday gave McKevitt permission to have the High Court consider if the Minister for Justice should have released him. McKevitt’s barrister, Mark Lynam, submitted that the minister did not give proper consideration to his request for enhanced remission. McKevitt also claims the minister may have considered improper material, including a report from the gardaí that he was likely to re-offend.
McKevitt claims he should have been released in late July instead of March 2016.
The State intends to oppose the application.
In a reserved judgment earlier yesterday, Mr Justice Bernard Barton held Mr McKevitt was being detained on a valid warrant.