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I'm too scared to go to court over car crash

A CLAIM for personal injuries, arising out of a crash in a restaurant car park, was dramatically withdrawn in court following allegations of threats.

Barrister Patrick O'Neill, counsel for 22-year-old deli worker Regina Daly, told the Circuit Civil Court his client was terrified to go ahead with her case as a result of threats.

He told Circuit Court President, Mr Justice Matthew Deery, that his client was "downstairs" but was afraid to come up to the court to give evidence.

Mr O'Neill, who appeared for Ms Daly, of Grange View Green, Clondalkin, Co Dublin, told the court she had instructed her legal team she had received threats and was "terrified of coming into court to give evidence in those circumstances".

Daly had sued Hayley Malone, of Donomore Crescent, Tallaght, Co Dublin, who, she alleged in her Civil Bill, had driven head-on into her car as she (Daly) attempted to drive into a car space in a Burger King car park at Belgard Road, Tallaght, in April last year.

She claimed Ms Malone had been negligent and had caused her whiplash type injuries to her neck and shoulders.

Ms Malone had lodged a full defence to the claims.



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Adrianne Fields, counsel for Ms Malone, said yesterday her client denied any knowledge of what had just been said in court and knew absolutely nothing about any threats and was prepared to go ahead with the case.

Mr O'Neill told the court that a second set of proceedings was under way and, in the circumstances, he asked for an adjournment until they had been dealt with.

Judge Deery, who refused preliminary applications to have proceedings heard in camera or impose a reporting ban, said any threats should be reported to the gardai.

He had been told the defendant had no hand in or part in the reported threats.

Mr O'Neill said Ms Daly was afraid even to make a complaint to the gardai for fear of a follow-up. She feared there would be certain consequences as a result of proceeding with her case.

"I am not saying those words were uttered by the defendant," Mr O'Neill said. "It seems they were made on behalf of the defendant. I am not saying the defendant herself has made these threats."

Judge Deery ruled the case should proceed unless Ms Daly wanted to withdraw the case and when told that was what she wished to do, he struck out her case with no order as to costs.

hnews@herald.ie