Speeding fine dropped over Irish

A Co Donegal builder who was accused of speeding last year will not be prosecuted because the authorities failed to meet their constitutional obligation to deal with him in Irish.

I love it!

2 comments on “Speeding fine dropped over Irish

Kenneth Makuakane says:

That?s an inspiring concept. Do you think it would work in the Hawaii court system? It would be interesting and educational to testing the system with a Hawaiian speaking defendent and his/her Hawaiian speaking lawyer.

keola says:

I would love to see it happen, but doubt it would in the foreseeable future.

Ireland has a language rights act which codifies precisely what services the government is required to provide to its citizens in the Irish language. While Hawaiian is defined as an official language in our state constitution, there is very little legislation that codifies it.

It would be interesting to see it happen though. I don’t know if there are any lawyers in Hawai’i who are fluent enough in the language as spoken and who are also familiar enough with the specific legal terms required in a court of law. They would also find it difficult to locate someone who could do real-time translation for the court. I’m pretty sure there are no judges at any level in the state with sufficient fluency either.

It would be nice to see someone try it and gauge the responsiveness of the court. It would take a judge who is very symathetic to the language who would have the patience to set this kind of precedent.

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