Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Questions (389)

Gerry Adams

Question:

389. Deputy Gerry Adams asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the new Criminal Courts of Justice provide facilities which allows the victim in a criminal case to have separate entrances and-or waiting rooms for the accused in a criminal trial. [11440/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy may be aware, under the provisions of the Courts Service Act 1998, management of the courts is the responsibility of the Courts Service. The Act provides that the Service is independent in the performance of its functions, including the provision of courthouse facilities.

The Criminal Courts of Justice has separate waiting rooms for victims and their families in cases before the courts. Victims can wait in these dedicated areas away from other parties to cases including the accused or members of the public until their case is called . Where an accused person is in custody then they are brought to the court through a separate custody area under escort by the Irish Prison Service. Victims enter the Criminal Courts of Justice through the main public entrance of the building along with all others attending the courts for criminal trials including accused persons on bail. I should add that where a child witness is providing evidence to the court via video link, these witnesses are brought to the dedicated suite through a separate non-public entrance to the Criminal Courts of Justice.

Question No. 390 answered with Question No. 383.