Ireland's District Court

Language, immigration and consequences for justice

By Kate Waterhouse

Ireland's District Court


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-9527-6
  • Pages: 224
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £80.00
  • Published Date: October 2014
  • BIC Category: Sociology, Social services & welfare, criminology, Crime & criminology, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Criminology, Society & social sciences / Social services & welfare, criminology


For the uninitiated, the Irish District Court is a place of incomprehensible, organised chaos. This comprehensive account of the court's criminal proceedings, based on an original study which involved observing hundreds of cases, aims to demystify the mayhem and provide the reader with descriptions of language, participant discourse and procedure in the typical criminal case. In addition, the book captures a recent and important change in the District Court: the advent of the immigrant or the Limited-English-proficient (LEP) defendant. It traces the rise of these defendants and explores the issues involved in ensuring access to justice across languages. It also provides an original description of LEP defendants and interpreters in District Court proceedings, ultimately considering how they have altered the institution and how the characteristics of the District Court affect how limited English proficient defendants access justice at this level of the Irish courts system.


Kate Waterhouse is a Visiting Research Assistant at Trinity College Dublin


PART I: The Irish District Court: its role, function and day-to-day operation
1. Introducing the District Court
2. Barristers, bench warrants and bail bonds
PART II: Immigration and the Irish District Court: changing context, new challenges
3. LEP immigrants in Irish courts
PART III: Processing LEP defendants: bilingual cases in the Irish District Court
4. Interpreting District Court proceedings for non-Irish defendants
5. The case of the immigrant: dynamics and discourse

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