Inquiry into woman’s detention in quarantine at Dublin hotel formally ended
Emma Kelly was fully vaccinated and tested negative for Covid-19, court hears
The Crowne Plaza Dublin Airport hotel where Emma Kelly was in quarantine. File photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
The court heard that Emma Kelly had been released after a Covid-19 test taken on Tuesday morning returned a negative result.
Two other separate challenges brought on behalf of two persons who remain in quarantine have been adjourned to later this week.
On Wednesday morning Mr Justice Brian O’Moore formally terminated an application for an inquiry into Ms Kelly’s detention, on hearing that she had been allowed to leave quarantine on Tuesday evening.
She had been in quarantine at the Crowne Plaza Airport Hotel in Dublin, since she came home from Dubai, to assist her family after her father underwent surgery for cancer, on April 3rd.
The judge had on Tuesday afternoon directed an inquiry, under Article 40.4.2 of the constitution, into the legality of Ms Kelly’s detention after her lawyers’ claims that her detention was unlawful.
Her counsel Michael O Higgins SC, said that she had been released, and that therefore it was accepted that the inquiry did not need to proceed.
Counsel added that it was necessary for his client to seek the inquiry given that applications she made for release on humanitarian grounds had been resumed on several occasions.
Counsel said that Ms Kelly, a 33-year-old paralegal, had been vaccinated and had tested negative for the virus on several occasions
The bar for release on humanitarian grounds under the scheme requiring arrivals into the State for certain countries to quarantine was set too high, counsel submitted.
The court also fixed the hearing of two other similar applications for inquiries sought by two women who remain in quarantine for Friday of this week.
She is a healthcare worker, who is fully vaccinated and has twice tested negative for Covid-19 in recent days.
She requires medicines to treat a number of health conditions she has, and has sought to have her quarantine reviewed.
She has a cardiac condition, and is distressed and concerned at having to quarantine in the hotel room by herself given her medical history.
She has received her first shot of a two-dose vaccine and has twice tested negative for Covid-19 in recent days.
Both are represented by Conor Power SC, who told that court that a timetable for the exchange of documents in the cases has been agreed with the State.
The actions have been brought on the grounds including that the women’s constitutional rights have been breached.
There were also flaws in the system put in to individually review the cases of those subject to the mandatory quarantine that also rendered their detention unlawful, it is claimed.