By Patrick Hayes
Following today’s case Bernadette Smyth says, “I’m not going away! Even if you tell lies about me, slander my name, or take me to court, I will still defend the unborn.” Commenting on the verdict, Solicitor Aiden Carlin said: "The pro-life movement worldwide will be disappointed at this decision which we are planning to Appeal to the County Court. Bernadette Smyth and Precious Life have been assaulted, insulted and falsely accused for simply defending the rights of mothers and their unborn children to choose life. This court case was a ploy to deter Precious Life and to curtail their rights under Articles 9, 10 and 11 of the European Convention. The pro-life movement and their legal representatives will not been silenced."
Commenting on the case, Carlin Solicitors, acting on behalf of Precious Life said, “It's Founder and Director Bernadette Smyth was convicted today in her landmark Human Rights case at Laganside magistrates court, Belfast.”
Aiden Carlin continued: “Over 3 days, Bernadette Smyth’s trial heard evidence that the isolated incidents complained of did not involve:
- Any bad language by Bernadette Smyth
- Any attempt to make contact with Dawn Purvis (she approached Bernadette Smyth's personal space on both occasions)
- Any telephone calls, text messages or emails to Dawn Purvis
- Any appearances at Dawn Purvis's home
- Any attempt to follow Dawn Purvis
Instead, the Court heard Bernadette Smyth's conduct was orderly, routine, peaceful, non-intrusive, non-obstructive, dignified and respectful of others including Dawn Purvis with whom she publicly disagrees on abortion. In fact, Bernadette Smyth’s leadership of Precious Life has been the subject of high praise by senior police who have acknowledged that opposition to Marie Stopes, Belfast has never lead to public disorder."
Aiden Carlin concluded: "Those who stand and pray outside it and other abortion facilities throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland are as much a part of society as the rest. Bernadette Smyth is a very highly respected Christian who has earned public recognition for her tireless work. She has campaigned worldwide on behalf of the unborn for over 17 years. Bernadette Smyth has totally refuted these allegation and invites Christians everywhere to follow her the next stage of her landmark case which has the potential to shape how the law is interpreted and applied in future.”