'Shane O'Farrell cannot be brought back, but his family can get justice'

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'Shane O'Farrell cannot be brought back, but his family can get justice'
By Ian Cameron ian.cameron@dundalkdemocrat.ie @IanAlexCameron

Sinn Féin Deputy Gerry Adams has welcomed the commitment by An Taoiseach Enda Kenny to meet with the family of Shane O’Farrell who was killed in a road accident in 2011.

The Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald has also agreed to participate in the meeting.

The Sinn Féin leader raised the issue during Leaders Questions in the Dáil.

The O’Farrell family are campaigning for a Commission of Investigation into the handling of the case by An Garda Síochána and the Justice agencies.

Shane O’Farrell’s mother, Lucia, was in the public gallery.

“Just before the summer recess, I gave the Taoiseach a file about the tragic death of Shane O’Farrell as a result of a hit-and-run in county Monaghan in August 2011,” Mr Adams said. “The O’Farrell family believe that Shane’s death was preventable and that there were multiple failings by the Gardaí and the Justice system. They believe a statutory Commission of Investigation is the only way that their concerns will be answered.

“Fifty-nine complaints have been made to GSOC in relation to Shane’s case, but after four-and-a-half years there has been no report.

“The Taoiseach indicated that a report from GSOC might be expected soon. This is important but does not diminish the need for a Commission of Investigation to examine the specifics of this case and its ramifications for the justice and policing system.

“Shane O’Farrell was 23, out cycling on his bike, when he was mowed down at speed. In that instant, Lucia and Jim were robbed of their pride and joy, their Trinity student, about to start work in the European Parliament, a fluent Irish speaker, a gentle young man with a bright future.

“They have lost their only son, but this case goes beyond the tragic death of Shane O’Farrell.

“It reveals a series of grievous flaws in the management and response by the justice agencies.

“Shane O’Farrell cannot be brought back, but his family can get justice,” Deputy Adams said.

He welcome the Taoiseach’s agreement to meet the family and stressed that this needs to be done as soon as is possible.