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Legal Assistance in Police Interviews

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Presidents' Hall

Law Society of Ireland, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7

Blackhall Place

D07 VY24 Dublin

Ireland

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Since May 2014 the DPP has permitted solicitors to attend suspect interviews in Garda stations. This parallels developments in other European countries and a recent strand of jurisprudence from the European Court of Human Rights which has clearly enunciated the right to such legal assistance. Early in 2017 the Irish Supreme Court in DPP v Doyle refused to recognise this as a constitutional right in Irish law, however the practice of attending interviews is permitted to continue. It does so without clear legislation or regulation guiding the practice.

Over the past 18 months the Socio Legal Research Centre in DCU, in partnership with both the Law Society of Ireland and colleagues in the Netherlands, Belgium and Hungary have developed and piloted a training programme (SUPRALAT) which sought to develop solicitor’s confidence and skills in attending garda interviews. This work has been funded by the Justice Programme of the European Commission.

This one-day conference will consider the right to legal assistance from a range of perspectives, bringing together experts from different jurisdictions and sectors. The morning sessions will focus on the developing jurisprudence in Europe and Ireland and assess the practical realisation of suspects’ rights in those jurisdictions. The next session will consider the necessity of training: lessons that can be learned from the experience of England and Wales who took this step in the 1980s, and the nature of the SUPRALAT training. We will then consider some of the particular issues which arise for more vulnerable participants in the system before a panel discussion on key themes emerging from the day.

Solicitors will receive 6.5 General CPD Hours for attendance.

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Location

Presidents' Hall

Law Society of Ireland, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7

Blackhall Place

D07 VY24 Dublin

Ireland

View Map

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