PAUL MURPHY HAS said the details of charges he expects to face over the Jobstown protest were again reported in the media before he knew himself.
The Anti-Austerity Alliance TD, along with more than two dozen others including two councillors, are expected to face criminal charges over their roles in the protest in which Tánaiste Joan Burton was allegedly trapped in her car.
In a report on RTÉ’s Six-One News this evening, it was reported that 27 people will face charges. The state broadcaster reports that 13 will face charges of false imprisonment, 14 with violent disorder, and one with criminal damage.
Summonses are expected to be issued next week, the report added.
A spokesperson for the Garda Press Office said they will not be confirming any details of the charges.
Murphy told TheJournal.ie said he’s not surprised he’s going to be charged, describing it as “another leak, which is presumably accurate”.
He said the first he knew of the impending charges was a call from RTÉ shortly before the Six-One went to air.
“We still don’t know for sure what’s happening”, he added.
Murphy maintains that any the “sit-down protest and slow march” carried out during the Jobstown protest does not amount to false imprisonment, describing the potential charges as a “massive restriction on civil liberties”.
This is the latest in a string of examples of political policing.
If charged, the 27 will face an “enormously important battle” he added.
He formally complained to the DPP, the Garda Commissioner, and GSOC over the previous leak when the charges were first revealed in August.
The deputy said he will complaining about this report as well, explaining that a team of gardaí have been assigned to investigate.
Solicitor Cahir O’Higgins, who is expected to represent Jobstown residents Ken and Carol Purcell among others, told TheJournal.ie he believes it would be a “matter of basic courtesy” that information like this should be given to a person’s legal representatives first.
“It’s certainly not helpful or healthy in a functional legal system that information is transmitted in that manner,” he said.
Originally published 6.52pm. With reporting by Hugh O’Connell and Michelle Hennessy.