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Convicted murderer Graham Dwyer wins case challenging use of phone records

December 6th, 2018 12:00 PM

By Siobhan Cronin

Graham Dwyer was convicted of Elaine O'Hara's murder

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BANDON man Graham Dwyer has won his legal action against the State and the Garda Commissioner regarding retention and access of his mobile phone data.

Dwyer was charged in October 2013 with the murder of Elaine O’Hara and was convicted by a jury at the Central Criminal Court in March 2015.

He was jailed for life and his appeal against conviction has yet to be heard.

Many requests for disclosure of mobile phone records were made under the relevant provisions of the 2011 Act by gardai investigating Ms O’Hara’s murder and were granted by the relevant service providers.

Phone data was also admitted into evidence during the trial. In the High Court in Dublin today, Mr Justice Tony O’Connor said the demands of a modern day democratic society, to guarantee the fundamental right to privacy, prescribed by EU and ECHR law, for access to retained telephony data, had not been met by the 2011 Act.

During Dwyer’s trial, his lawyers argued the mobile phone data was inadmissible as evidence but those arguments were rejected by the trial judge.  

The proceedings were against the Garda Commissioner, Director of Public Prosecutions, Ministers for Justice and Communications, Ireland and the Attorney General.

Lawyers now believe the ruling could have implications for many other criminal cases and investigations.

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