Warning sent to missing witness


A witness who was summonsed to give evidence relating to Mr Liam Lawlor failed to appear yesterday. Mr Desmond O`Neill SC, for the tribunal, informed the chairman that Mr Noel Gilsen had not appeared. "The evidence of Mr Gilsen will touch upon the fact that he is named in the affidavit of Mr Liam Lawlor as the person who was a nominee of Mr Lawlor's in respect of his dealings in relation to the leasing of a Mercedes Benz motor in 1987," Mr O'Neill said.

The chairman said there was a failure to comply with the Tribunals of Inquiry Act. He said if a person failed to obey a summons, he would be guilty of an offence.

"I would certainly contemplate advising the DPP of the fact that an offence has occurred but I will defer my actual decision until 12 noon to enable Mr Hanahoe to be contacted and advised of the potential course of action that is likely to take place," the chairman said. At noon, Mr Michael Farrell of Michael E Hanohoe & Co, Mr Gilsen's solicitors, said he apologised to the tribunal. He was not handling the case himself but Mr Hanahoe was in the Attorney General's office. Mr Gilsen instructed him that he was most anxious to co-operate with the tribunal but he was at a major business meeting that day. Mr Farrell applied to have the evidence heard today. The chairman said he would accede to that request. "I regard the manner in which this matter has been treated as being extremely rude to the tribunal."