Gemma O'Doherty tells court she fears for her safety

Gemma O'doherty Tells Court She Fears For Her Safety Gemma O'doherty Tells Court She Fears For Her Safety
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Ray Managh

Journalist Gemma O’Doherty has told a judge she fears for her safety and has written a substantial document in which she has named names and which will be published in the event of anything happening to her.

“These are dangerous times for journalists like me,” she told Mr Justice Richard Humphreys in the High Court on Wednesday, when she told him her naming document would be released by friends in the event of anything untoward happening.

O’Doherty said she had been abused on the street because of “fake news” published about her, but added that some people shook her hand.

“I have been physically assaulted several times in recent months because of my love for this country even while the gardaí looked on. Eggs have been thrown at me,” she said.

She told Judge Humphreys that during an application last week in her absence, on behalf of Fingal County Councillor Jimmy Guerin who is suing her for defamation of character, “outrageous lies” had been made about her and subsequently published in several on-line and printed media.


“I am not going to have my good name dragged through the mud. I am a journalist whose reputation in impeccable,” she stated in oral submissions to the court.

“In this incredible, spurious and fictional action that has been taken against me I have been the subject of a tsunami of libellous headlines,” she said.

O’Doherty said she would be suing every single news medium that had carried articles and printed “the most outrageous lies and scurrilous defamation of me.” She told Judge Humphreys that her appearance in court was her opportunity to set the record straight.


She said the alleged defamation on her Twitter and Facebook account and the substantive action by Guerin, a brother of murdered journalist Veronica Guerin, was an attempt to silence her. She has made allegations that gardaí colluded with criminals in Veronica Guerin’s murder and asked Judge Humphreys to strike it out.

“I am asking you to strike out this spurious action now. It’s a waste of court time and taxpayers money,” she said.

Publicity and media headlines appeared after the High Court had been told last Monday week that O’Doherty had been “actively trying to evade” service of the defamation proceedings brought against her by Guerin. She denied the allegation in court and said Guerin would be unable to prove it.

Details of the alleged defamation against Guerin by O’Doherty has not been detailed to the court.

O’Doherty said the gardaí had framed people in the past and when one was taking on the elements of the State, as she was, about corruption the State would stop at nothing to silence her.

Barrister Ronan Lupton, who appeared for Guerin with solicitors Flynn O’Driscoll, told the court he strongly objected to allegations Ms O’Doherty had made against Mr Guerin’s legal team.

Judge Humphreys said he would not strike out orders that had already been made against Ms O’Doherty and awarded costs against her. The court did not accept the allegations she had made against Mr Guerin’s legal team.

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