Meanwhile, In The High Court


Former Minister for Justice Alan Shatter and Independents 4 Change TD Mick Wallace on RTE’s Prime Time on May 16, 2013

You may recall how, back in May 2013, the then Justice Minister Alan Shatter and Independents 4 Change TD appeared on RTÉ’s Prime Time.

They were there to discuss a penalty points report by then Assistant Commissioner John O’Mahoney – which found there was no widespread quashing of penalty points.

In addition, the then Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan had appeared at the Public Accounts Committee earlier that day.

During the Prime Time appearance, Mr Shatter accused Mr Wallace of having been stopped by the gardaí in May 2012 and that he had been on his phone while driving.

Mr Shatter claimed Mr Wallace had been advised by the guard who stopped him that a fixed ticket charge could be issued and that he could be given penalty points.

Mr Shatter also claimed Mr Wallace was warned not to do it again.

The claims on Prime Time were made almost a month after Gemma O’Doherty, in the Irish Independent, reported that, in July 2007, a car registered to the then Deputy Commissioner Martin Callinan – who was appointed to the position in January 2007 – was caught speeding on camera.

Ms O’Doherty reported the penalty points in relation to this incident were subsequently quashed.

After Prime Time, Mr Wallace told Pat Kenny that he was neither stopped nor warned.

He said:

“I was parked at the lights and a Garda vehicle came up beside me. And I was on the phone…which I know, I was wrong, I shouldn’t have been on it. The guard..I rolled down the window, the guard rolled down his window. There was two guards there. And I said ‘oh’, I just had my hand up and they said ‘it’s OK’. And, left it at that. And we just, we made small talk after for maybe about 15/20 seconds and the lights went green and I drove on straight and they pulled out. The guards were friendly.”

Following what happened on Prime Time, and a subsequent complaint made by Mr Wallace, the Data Protection Commissioner ruled the disclosure made by Mr Shatter breached his duties under the Data Protection Act.

The Circuit Civil Court upheld this decision when Mr Shatter made an initial appeal.

However, Mr Shatter appealed again to the High Court.

Further to this…

RTE reports:

Former minister for justice Alan Shatter has won his challenge to a finding that his disclosure of information about Independent TD Mick Wallace on a live TV programme, was a breach of his duties under the data protection act.

…Mr Shatter claimed the then Data Protection Commissioner, Billy Hawkes failed to set out the basis for his conclusion the information was personal data and had prejudged that issue and acted in breach of fair procedures.

Mr Shatter’s lawyers said he never had, or saw, any written record of the information communicated to him during a conversation with then Garda Commissioner Martin Callanan.

He said the information was “in his mind” only and what he said did not amount to “processing” it.

Shatter wins challenge to Data Protection Commissioner ruling (RTE)

Previously: How Did He Know?

No Points At The Five Lamps

17 thoughts on “Meanwhile, In The High Court

  1. Jake38

    “……..Mr Shatter breached his duties under the Data Protection Act.”

    Wow. So much worse than, lets say, oh, not paying your taxes.

  2. Catherinecostelloe

    Wonder did Martin tip you off that Maurice Mc Cabe was a Kidde fiddler , Alan? Seeing how ye enjoyed a good auld gossip on dishing the dirt on anyone that would have the audacity to challenge ye? Boo bloody boo hoo …..woe is you.

    1. Nodin

      Indeed. It would make you wonder precisely how many others, both in and out of the Gardai have been the victim of one particular mans malice, and why.

  3. anne

    The information was in his mind, and he was just processing it – in front of the nation on RTE.

    What a joke. Does Shatter ever admit to wrong doing at all? He seems incapable of taking responsibility.

  4. Reach For The Stars

    This is absolutely amazing. Say what you want about Shatter but he’s clearly an excellent legal mind.

      1. Reach For The Stars

        Well he managed to wriggle his way out of it with his legal skills
        Would you be able to do the same?

        1. jusayinlike

          “With his legal skills”

          Lol more like his very deep wallet, having his own practice and people to call on also helps, the average person couldn’t afford such luxuries..

          1. Reach For The Stars

            All of that helps but I don’t know his personal circumstances

            I merely pointed out that he identified and presented a winning legal argument in court which would not in my opinion have occurred to the average lawyer to present.

    1. Harry Molloy

      He is an amazing mind, and probably our most progressive ever legislator. in fact, as a single politician he may be responsible for providing more tangible benefit to citizens of this country than any other living being responsible for the likes of the free legal advice centre, civil partnership legislation and cohabitation legislation.

      Unfortunately, he was also sly, truculent, and the architect of his own downfall.

      But a good example that there’s few cases of a person or a politician being simply “good” or “bad”

      1. Reach For The Stars

        Have you ever noticed that most of the bun throwers on this never want to debate anything but rather repeat some tired old pub bore talking point ad nauseuam like the sort of leading minds one sees on Fox News or CNN?

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