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High Court challenge brought against gardaí for seizure and refusal to return car

The vehicle was seized as part of an investigation into allegations of false imprisonment.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

A DUBLIN MAN has brought a High Court challenge over the seizure and refusal by gardaí to return his car.

Ryan Byrne from St Teresa’s Road Crumlin has brought judical review proceedings against the Garda Commissioner and the the Superintendent of Enniscorthy Garda Station arising out of the seizure and continued retention of his car following his arrest in Dublin on 16 April last.

Byrne, who was detained in respect of an allegation of false imprisonment, was released from Crumlin Station on 17 April.

His vehicle was also seized as part of that investigation, which the High Court heard is being conducted by the gardaí in Co Wexford.

He was informed he could return the following day, 18 April to get his car back. However when he returned he claims he was informed by the gardaí that the vehicle could not be released without the permission of a garda sergeant from Gorey, Co Wexford.

Byrne’s solicitor Mr Tony Collier wrote to the superintendent in Enniscorthy Garda Station seeking the return of Byrne’s car, which the court heard remains in Dublin.

Byrne’s counsel Colman Fitzgerald SC, appearing with Karl Monahan Bl, said that despite several requests made seeking the car’s return the gardaí have retained the vehicle.

Counsel said Byrne, who is unemployed is prejudiced by the decision and requires the car for family reasons, and in particular to pick up medicine for his asthmatic three-year-old son.

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The covid-19 pandemic, counsel said has made it unsafe for the child to be in public.

In his action, Byrne seeks orders compelling the commissioner and the superintendent to either return the car to him or disclose the legal basis why the car is being withheld from him.

He also seeks a declaration that his property rights have been infringed, and damages from the respondents.

Permission to bring the challenge was granted, on an ex-parte basis, by Mr Justice Michael Quinn. The matter was made returnable to a date later this month.

About the author:

Aodhan O Faolain

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