The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) has been granted leave by the Court of Appeal to act as amicus curiae (friend of the court) in what the organisation describes “an important case” relating to anti-social-behaviour orders.
The case centres on the operation of part 11 of the Criminal Justice Act 2006, which allows for the making of civil orders restraining anti-social behaviour.
A breach of a civil order made under this part of the 2006 legislation is a criminal offence.
In this case, a civil order was made against an individual who was later convicted for breaching an anti-social-behaviour order on two occasions.
IHREC says that the case raises important human-rights concerns – including the right to freedom of expression, the right to trial in due course of law, and the right to equality before the law.
The High Court quashed the order made against the individual under section 115 of the Criminal Justice Act 2006.
The commission says it will now impartially assist the Court of Appeal as it considers this case.
Sinéad Gibney (Chief Commissioner) said that the outcome of the case was likely to have a significant impact on the operation of anti-social-behaviour orders in Ireland.