Minister of State Hildegarde Naughton (pictured) has confirmed that solicitors may request to see imprisoned clients in person, despite virus restrictions.
The minister said that the management of the Prison Service had requested, through the Law Society, that physical visits be carried out only where absolutely necessary.
“However, any solicitors that require to see their client in person in any prison are facilitated, with interpretation, where required,” the minister said.
Access to phone calls
Control of the virus has been successful in Irish jails, and as a contingency, all prisoners have access to phone or video calls with their legal representatives, the minister continued.
In addition, all prisoners are entitled to receive legal correspondence by post in accordance with Rule 44 of the Prison Rules 2007.
The minister was responding to a question from Sinn Féin TD, Réada Cronin.
Cronin asked whether, at this stage of the COVID-19 situation, the minister would allow solicitors to see their clients in person, as opposed to by video link, particularly in complex cases, and in which interpreters might be required.