Fri, 27 Aug, 2021 – 14:57
THERE is “absolutely” no chance of Ian Bailey agreeing to go to France for a trial, his solicitor has said.
Mr Bailey was found guilty of the murder of Sophie Toscan du Plantier, in his absence, at a trial in France in 2019.
Mr Bailey has always denied any involvement in the murder.
Bailey’s solicitor, Frank Buttimer has said that there are “no circumstances” in which Mr Bailey would receive a fair hearing in France.
On his visit to Ireland, the French president Emmanuel Macron was asked about the Ian Bailey case and the murder of Sophie Toscan du Plantier.
Last October, the Irish High Court rejected an attempt by France to extradite Mr Bailey.
However, Mr Macron said on Thursday that a window still exists for a new trial in France.
Speaking on RTÉ’s Morning Ireland, Frank Buttimer who has represented Ian Bailey, reacted to Mr Macron’s remarks.
“This is just a part of the continued pursuit of Ian Bailey whose life has been made miserable by what has been going on so far.
“I noticed that the president made reference to the fact that there is a window of opportunity between the Irish and the French Courts, almost as if the Irish courts have some obligation in relation to the matter,” he said.
Mr Buttimer noted the Irish courts have decided that Mr Bailey should not be extradited on three occasions.
He said the Irish State on the last two of those occasions has decided that the Irish High Court’s decision is correct and that the Irish High Court decision should not be appealed to the Supreme Court.
“It doesn’t surprise me that there is this ongoing pursuit of the matter in France. That is the position as it stands.”
Mr Buttimer said there are “no circumstances” in which the Irish Court would agree to extradite Mr Bailey.
When asked if there is any chance of Mr Bailey agreeing to go to France for a trial, he said there is “absolutely none”.
“There are no circumstances in which Mr Bailey would ever receive a fair hearing in France.”
He described the trial in France as “no more than a show trial”.
“It certainly would not stand up to any form of scrutiny in this jurisdiction as being anything remotely akin to a fair criminal trial.”
As speculation continues with documentaries on the case proving popular among the public, Mr Buttimer said he does believe there is more information on the case out there.
“Somebody committed the crime. Whether that person was somebody from this jurisdiction or an outside jurisdiction also remains a matter of interest.
“People out there should bear in mind that the Irish state does not recognise the conviction of Mr Bailey in France. Were there to be recognition of that conviction, the Irish police file would not be open.”