Judge who faces jail for deceiving client resigns


The District Court judge Heather Perrin submitted her resignation last night.

She is due to appear in the Circuit Criminal Court for sentencing tomorrow, following her conviction for deception last week. She could face up to five years in jail.

The Courts Service issued a statement last night saying: “The Courts Service has been informed, that this evening Judge Heather Perrin will proffer her immediate resignation from the District Court bench, to President Michael D Higgins, via the Department of an Taoiseach.”

Minister for Justice Alan Shatter confirmed that she had resigned. “The Minister will be making no further comment on this matter prior to the court finalising the case by sentencing,” his spokeswoman said.

Asked if she would be entitled to a judge’s pension, a Courts Service spokesman said this was not a matter for the service. The departments of Justice and Finance were unable to respond to the query last night.

Last Tuesday, Perrin (60), of Lambay Court, Malahide, Co Dublin, was found to have induced a client by deception to leave half his estate to her two children when she was working as his solicitor.

It was a unanimous verdict from the jury which had deliberated for more than 3½ hours. She was released on bail by Judge Mary Ellen Ring until tomorrow’s hearing.

The false will was exposed after O’Hanrahan Quaney, the firm that took over Perrin’s business when she was appointed to the judiciary, discovered it in her papers.

Perrin is on long-term sick leave from her post. She may yet appeal her conviction of deception to the Court of Criminal Appeal. She is the first member of the judiciary to be convicted of a serious crime in the history of the State.