RTE ruling stands


Following one of the longest-running libel trials in Irish legal history, a Government parliamentary deputy, Beverley Cooper-Flynn, has lost her action against RTE and its chief news correspondent Charlie Bird.

The deputy had appealed her case to the Supreme Court, having lost it in the High Court, but failed to overturn the earlier judgment. The action had arisen out of an investigative series of reports by Bird and economics expert George Lee into the activities of an Irish bank in 1998, alleged to have helped customers to evade tax while it also allegedly overcharged customers.

In the course of their investigations it was discovered that, while a bank employee before she entered politics, Cooper-Flynn was implicated in the bank’s activities.

Cooper-Flynn now faces a legal bill estimated at €2m.

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