What should have been a routine engagement between the police and a citizen over a very minor traffic infringement is, apparently, evolving into a bizarre and disturbing case of state bullying.
Clare Daly TD made an illegal right-hand turn and the Gardai are now preparing a file for the DPP to decide whether she should be prosecuted or not.
This is very unusual behaviour even in a dysfunctional jurisdiction like Ireland.
We are told that this action has been taken because of a directive from the DPPs office some years ago that obliges Gardai to send a file outlining the facts in any case attracting public attention before a decision can be reached about prosecution.
The directive only applies to cases where the subject of the file is a person in the public eye.
If I’m reading this correctly and I accept that I know nothing about the background of this directive and could be wrong, this revelation is more disturbing than the police actions against Clare Daly.
Was the directive introduced to protect ‘persons in the public eye’?
Was it introduced to allow powerful state authorities bypass an over enthusiastic police officer who had intentions against a ‘person in the public eye’?
But even if there is a legitimate reason for the directive it’s still a very disturbing revelation.
Its very existence seems to confirm what ordinary citizens have long suspected – that some citizens are more equal than others.