Trial of judge Curtin collapsesMonday 26 April 2004 11.29
The trial of the Circuit Court judge Brian Curtin on charges of possessing child pornography has collapsed.
Judge Curtin has been found not guilty by direction of the trial judge Carroll Moran. The accused had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Judge Moran found that gardaí raided Mr Curtin's home after the search warrant had expired. He said the State had to have been aware that the warrant had expired.
In his seven page written judgement, Judge Moran described the submissions made by the prosecution on the validity of the search warrant as 'untenable and nonsensical'.
He said the prosecution must have known or at least ought to have known that on any reasonable interpretation of the issues any judge in any court would have excluded the relevant evidence.
Judge Moran said the law was crystal clear and the issue could not be simpler.
He said it was wrong for the prosecution to bring this case to trial when they knew or ought to have known that the warrant had expired and the evidence collected as a result of the execution of the warrant would have been inadmissible.
Questioned about the court ruling in relation to the warrant, a garda spokesman said they accepted the judgement of the court.
The spokesman said garda management will be examining the judgement in relation to how it affects the gardaí operationally.