The presiding judge in the Court of Appeal directed the Gardai to remove Seán and Isaac Burke from the court yesterday on account of their interjections and interruptions to the judge.
The hearing was to deal with an application by GSOC (Garda Ombudsman Commission) for audio recordings from the events in court which led to student barrister (later called to the bar) Simeon Burke being convicted of a public order offence earlier this year.
At the hearing yesterday Enoch Burke appeared by video link from Mountjoy prison but he had his microphone turned off on the direction of the judge due to his continual interruptions.
When Seán Burke and Isaac Burke repeatedly shouted “objection” to the judge’s direction to mute Enoch Burke’s microphone Mr Justice Edwards told the Gardai, “It is my firm direction these two gentlemen be removed because they are in contempt of the court”.
The legal arguments over the use of the ambient recordings from court when the DAR (Digital Audio Recording) is turned off are interesting and it is an issue that is not entirely settled.
But the arguments and issue itself tends to fade into insignificance when the judge is obliged to direct the removal of individuals involved for shouting and interrupting.
Not for the first time, mind, and you would wonder when this type of contempt of court will be punished more severely than mere ejection from the court.