Batt O'Keeffe

Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged

In Blog, Politicsby Fedayn2 Comments


Batt O'Keeffe

Batt O’Keeffe leaving the Dáil the night of the IMF takeover © Paul Reynolds


A dramatic case has found District Court Judge Heather Perrin guilty of deceiving an elderly client in to leaving half his estate to her family.

She was shocked and amazed following the finding, as no doubt we will be when Shatter announces there is no way he can have her removed from the bench or touch her pension.

A question that isn’t being asked by the press is what the Irish Times might call ‘The Why?’. Why was this woman appointed a judge of the District Court. This case highlights much of the systemic corruption to which we have become immune in Ireland.

This woman, a solicitor at the time of her deception, was charged after an arrest by appointment with Gardaí on the 22nd of January 2009. She became a District Court judge on 25th February 2009 and the investigation by the fraud squad has been ongoing since late 2009. She seems to have spent most of her time as District Court judge ‘sick’.

Brian Cowen appointed her under his tenure as Taoiseach (remember the days). But before it could have come before him, the proposed judge must pass the Judicial Appointments Advisory Board (JAAB). The whack of grift from the JAAB would knock a dog, and we say that with every eye to not getting drawn before the four goldmines ourselves, so figure it out on your own. Of course it may not have been Cowen or even Fianna Fáil who pressed for this solicitor-under-investigation to be appointed to the District Court; journalists with more money than rabble will no doubt be hopping-off Freedom of Information requests as we type, to find out if the Greens were behind this one.

But be in no doubt that FF – (the party of gombeenism and supporters that are still trying to pick up RTE on analogue) – were behind most of the terrible, terrible appointments that has left our legal system in a sentencing and systematic shambles.

Mark Tighe in this article from the Sunday Times (Nov 2010):  “Twenty-three Fianna Fail politicians have lobbied the justice minister [in writing] over the past 12 years to have particular lawyers appointed as judges.” , ” It shows that Batt O’Keeffe, the enterprise minister, applied most pressure, writing seven separate letters to the justice minister advocating the appointment of lawyers as judges.”

But what of it? Those times are dead and gone, they’re with the Galway Tent. Ah hold on…Enda Kenny appointed his former four-time running mate, local party strategist and member of the Fine Gael board of directors as a District Court judge. Former Fine Gael senator Patrick Durcan is the third judge to be appointed in the past month with political and personal links to the coalition.

So Justice Helen Perrin is facing a possible five year prison sentence after which it seems she may return to the bench and/or receive a full pension. How do we like that?

May the judged be their judges when they rot down in hell– Shane MacGowan


  1. I was wondering the exact same thing – how was this woman made a judge?

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