Irish Penal Reform Trust

Prison Law

IPRT is committed to promoting and supporting the development of prison litigation in Ireland. Since 2009, we have co-hosted with the ICBA and the DSBA a series of Prison Law Seminars. This series has provided CPD accredited expert seminars for barristers and solicitors on topical issues of prison law and also provided a platform for exchange of ideas and information between leading practitioners in this area.

We have also provided support and assistance for both barristers and solicitors involved in prison litigation. This has involved research on legal developments internationally or at the ECHR level, identifying potential expert witnesses, and directly providing expertise and information on the operation of the prison system.  We will continue to provide this support and we welcome contact from any practitioners who would like assistance with relevant litigation.

ISIS Launch New Bulletin ‘Just Sentencing: News and Comment’

20th March 2013

The Irish Sentencing Information System (ISIS) has launched a new bulletin written by Tom O’Malley B.L., aiming to keep readers informed of developments in sentencing in Ireland and abroad.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 12 - March 2013

4th March 2013

Highlights of this bulletin include: access to appropriate medical treatment in prison; amendment to Prison Rules 2007 on investigation of ‘Category A’ complaints; and the publication of the Report of an Investigation into the death of a prisoner.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 11 - February 2013

6th February 2013

Highlights of this bulletin include a media report on prisoners granted leave by the High Court to challenge decisions of the Irish Prison Service; a "pilot judgment" of the ECHR regarding overcrowding in Italian prisons; and UK media reports on over-use of imprisonment for women offenders.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 10 - January 2013

14th January 2013

Highlights of this bulletin include a judgment of the ECHR regarding prison conditions; and media reports on older prisoners, temporary release and an inquest into the death of a heroin-addicted prisoner following ‘unstructured’ release.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 9 - December 2012

28th November 2012

Highlights of this bulletin include actions on access to medical treatment for serious illness; a claim against the the Secretary of State for not following the recommendation of the Parole Board to transfer the claimant to open (Category D) conditions in the UK; and a judicial review of the parole commissioners' decision to revoke the claimant’s licence.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 8 - November 2012

2nd November 2012

Highlights of this bulletin include two legal challenges brought by young people detained in St. Patrick's Institution,a roundup of media reporting on various issues including the recent report of the Inspector of Prisons on St. Patrick's, and several ECHR cases.

Prison Law Seminar: Parole Reform and the ECHR

23rd October 2012

On Monday October 22nd 2012, IPRT hosted our ninth Prison Law Seminar on the topic of Parole Reform and the ECHR.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 7 - Autumn 2012

1st October 2012

Among the highlights of this bulletin are Irish High court decisions on parole and prison transfers; Northern Ireland and UK cases on body searching and parole; and several ECHR decisions including several on prison conditions and prison complaints procedures.

IPRT Prison Law Bulletin: No. 6 – Summer 2012

23rd July 2012

Among the highlights of this bulletin are the lacuna which prevented a person with mental health difficulties being deemed ‘not guilty by reason of insanity’; the material which a parole board ought to be allowed to have access to in an English decision; and a ECtHR decision on the treatment of mentally ill-detainees.

IPRT Prison Law Paper: Accountability Structures and The Law Regulating Irish Prisons

29th June 2012

This paper examines the aspects of the law regarding how decisions are made in prisons and the requirements for accountability for deaths and other serious incidents in custody.

Respect for rights in the penal system with prison as a last resort.



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