Coverage of Jobstown trial

Sir, – Your coverage of the acquittal of the Jobstown Six was bizarre. It would have been easy from a cursory glance at the stories and analysis to miss the central point: that they were acquitted.

Your focus instead on the alleged “contempt” by Paul Murphy and his supporters in using social media to highlight their case did not adduce a single jot of evidence that the jury saw or were influenced by their activities – if there had been such evidence you can be sure the trial would have been halted.

Yet the logic was clear – the implicit suggestion was that if they did get off it was only because they ran an improper, raucous campaign alongside the trial.

That is a calumny not unlike the libellous suggestions made in the UK at the time of the acquittal of the Birmingham Six that they were probably guilty.


What happened in the Dublin trial was that a jury bravely defied conventional wisdom and the establishment to strike a blow for freedom of assembly.

More power to them. – Yours, etc,