Former Army officer awarded €70,000 over arms trial libel
The Irish Independent
16-may-2003


FORMER Army captain James Kelly is to be paid €70,000 - to include costs - as part of the settlement of a libel action arising from a book titled 'The Arms Trial'.

This was announced in the High Court yesterday where Capt Kelly was also given an apology. Capt Kelly (74) brought his action against publishers Gill and MacMillan Ltd, Hume Avenue, Park West Industrial Estate, Dublin, and former Taoiseach Garret FitzGerald.

Outside court, Capt Kelly said the €70,000 is being paid by the company.

The apology read by Eoin McCullough SC, for the defence, said Gill and MacMillan Ltd, as publishers of The Arms Trial by Justin O'Brien, wished to point out that any references to Capt Kelly in the book "suggesting or implying that Capt Kelly was guilty of wrongdoing or improper conduct or that he had acted upon inappropriate orders from persons other than his military superiors and/or the Minister for Defence are untrue".


"We apologise for any hurt and distress caused to Capt Kelly by reason of the publication."

Mr Justice John Quirke was told the action could be struck out with no order.

Afterwards, Capt Kelly said he was delighted with the outcome and he called it his "first public vindication" in 33 years.


John Maddock