The brother of famous Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams is fighting the Irish justice system’s attempts to have him extradited to Northern Ireland in order to face charges of sexually abusing his daughter.
Lawyers for Liam Adams argued, on Wednesday in Dublin’s High Court, that the Belfast native could not receive a fair trial because of extensive media coverage of the allegations against him.
Liam Adams is also seeking State legal aid to help him fight his bid against the Irish authorities, money which ultimately comes from the Irish taxpayer. A judge will decide on July 28 whether he should receive the funding.
At the hearing Barrister Michael O'Higgins also applied to the court for a copy of a letter between the Crown Prosecution Service in Belfast and authorities in Dublin, which he claimed was being withheld from his legal team and which he believed would shed interesting details on the abuse allegations which Adams was facing.
Justice Michael Peart, one of the Irish High Court’s most noteworthy justices, said that the Court, and not the legal representation, would make the decision on whether or not the important letter contained enough relevant information to be made available to counsel for the State.
Investigators in Belfast want to question him on 18 charges of sexual abuse, including rape, indecent assault and gross indecency, against his daughter Aine Tyrell, who waived her right to anonymity last December.
The alleged offences date from March 1977 to March 1983.
The first time the allegations surfaced was after a UTV documentary which alleged that Mr Adams had perpetrated continual sexual abuse on his daughter.
Following the documentary Gerry Adams urged his brother to turn himself into the authorities.
Liam Adams actually handed himself in to a police station in Sligo at one stage, but police were not able to arrest him as they did not have the necessary European Arrest Warrant as the alleged offences wouldn’t have been committed in the Irish jurisdiction.
When the Warrant was ultimately endorsed by an Irish court, Adams handed himself in again, and this time was arrested. He still, however, maintains his innocence.
The PSNI is also said to be interested in pursuing his extradition.