The Dealer understands that at a High Court hearing on Tuesday, Mr Justice Paul Gilligan ruled in favour of the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association, the ICSA to you and me, over a dispute involving its former national treasurer James Reynolds.
In April, Mr Reynolds secured an injunction preventing the farming organisation from removing him from its Longford executive.
The legal eagles describe this as an ex-parte injunction.
Mr Reynolds was challenging the ICSA’s decision to remove him from his position on the Longford branch executive and, by extension, his position as national treasurer.
The drystock association wasn’t happy that Mr Reynolds is the deputy president of the right-wing political party, the National Party.
The association was so unhappy that it effectively removed him from the ICSA. It has a policy that says no one can be a spokesperson for a political project or organisation while holding an ICSA national officer position.
Anyway, since April there has been some legal to-ing and fro-ing.
On Tuesday, Justice Gilligan heard submissions from barristers from both sides as well as some affidavits.
The judge said Mr Reynolds had not provided full disclosure in getting the injunction in the first instance. That’s a big one.
He also said the ICSA’s management committee had acted reasonably in its approach to the dispute. He said the committee had followed the ICSA’s constitution and had provided Mr Reynolds with due process.
Finally, Justice Gilligan accepted that the ICSA is a lobbying organisation and that having a prominent member of a national political party at its top table would be problematic.
One that’s new to me, too, was that Justice Gilligan accepted ICSA evidence that it could not be associated with comments made by Mr Reynolds through social media slating European Commissioner for Agriculture Phil Hogan. Justice Gilligan awarded full costs in favour of the ICSA. Mr Reynolds can appeal the ruling.