‘Irish Mail on Sunday’ publisher apologises over golf holiday story

Article said senior Garda association figures couldn’t meet commissioner as they were in Spain

The former president, and the general secretary of the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors (Agsi), have settled their defamation actions against the publisher of the Irish Mail on Sunday.

The terms included an apology read to the High Court which said Associated Newspapers accepted an “untrue” report was published in the Irish Mail on Sunday on February 24th, 2013.

The report, published on the frontpage, said that Agsi’s then president Willie Gleeson and general secretary John Redmond had travelled together on a golfing trip to Spain and were therefore unable to attend a meeting requested by the Garda commissioner.

“Neither men play golf and were not on such a trip; nor did they miss such a meeting,” the apology stated. “We accept that both men are hardworking and respected members of AGSI and we are happy to make this clear and apologise to them both.”


The apology was read to the court by Eoin McCullough SC, for Associated Newspapers, under the settlements of the separate defamation actions issued by both men.

Hugh Mohan SC, representing Mr Gleeson, said the action could be struck out with an order for costs in the plaintiffs favour. Jim O’Callaghan SC, with Hugh O’Flaherty BL, represented Mr Redmond.

Mr Justice John Hedigan made those orders.

In their actions, both men had claimed damages, including aggravated and/or exemplary damages arising fromn publication of the article on the front page of the Irish Mail on Sunday of February 24th 2013.

It was headlined: “GARDA UNION CHIEFS SKIP PROTEST FOR GOLF IN SPAIN” and continued on page four of the newspaper.

Mary Carolan

Mary Carolan

Mary Carolan is the Legal Affairs Correspondent of the Irish Times