Judge Mary Devins has issued a fresh apology for comments she made in court last Friday where she described social welfare as a Polish charity.

In her new statement, Judge Devins said she unreservedly and without qualification apologised for what she called her "off the cuff" comments.

She understood and accepted the hurt the comments caused to members of the Polish community, the statement added.

"This was never my intention and I express my sorrow for same. My previous clarification was an attempt to provide a context and was not intended in any way to dilute my apology for such unwarranted comments," the judge said.

Advocacy group, The Integration Centre, earlier criticised Judge Devins' original apology.

But following the new apology, it said it no longer intended to make a formal complaint to gardaí about her remarks.

Polish people living in Ireland have said that the remark was insulting.

In a statement yesterday, Judge Devins said: "My recent comment in court was made in the context of - and alluding to – another recent, violent, alcohol fuelled incident: involving several defendants of Polish origin who were all recipients of social welfare payments.

“The comment was intended to be specific to that incident and occurrence and was never intended to offend any community, or members of any community.

“If insult was taken from my comment I apologise for same.”

Killian Forde of The Integration Centre said racist remarks were becoming part of the mainstream, and when it comes from judges, it becomes legitimised.