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Judge Mary Devins’ conditional apology for her bizarre remarks in court does not sit well with me.
In a case where the defendants sentence was tailored to take into account his ill considered anti-Polish remarks issued while drunk, it is astounding that the court should hear more anti-Polish remarks from someone as sober as a judge.
It’s not just a case of ‘if anyone was offended’ Judge. The courts cannot tolerate racist remarks from either side of the judges’ tables, and especially not the bench.
Offence could be the least of it. Should the impression go out, that a non-national can expect ‘a certain view’ to be taken of them in court, because of their status, then that would be an appalling state of affairs for Irish justice.
The excuse given was that she was thinking about some other Polish people who had been before the court. The defendant in this case was not Polish, his remarks were anti Polish, which is why the judge who originally convicted him specified a Polish charity should benefit as a fitting lesson in tolerance and proper behaviour.
That concept seems to have flown over the head of Judge Devins who undid all of that work, by giving the impression, that she in her sober state was not impressed with the Polish people either.
What message does that give to him, in undermining Judge Gibbons’ ruling? Next time you want to make racist remarks, say it while sober?
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