Coroner calls for extra powers

A senior coroner has called for inquests to be given new powers in order to halt postponements and delays caused by witnesses not turning up.

A senior coroner has called for inquests to be given new powers in order to halt postponements and delays caused by witnesses not turning up.

Ronan Maguire was speaking after a number of witnesses failed to show up at inquests in his Co Louth jurisdiction.

At present, the maximum fine for failing to appear at an inquest is just over €6.

Mr Maguire said coroners should be given the same power as courts, meaning any witness who failed to turn up could be held in contempt of court.

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