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O'Keeffe Clan

Gathering and Rally

9, 10 and 11 Sept 2016

guided tours, lectures

historical and genealogical exhibitions

cultural and musical events,

buffet banquet Saturday evening
Aindrias O’ Caoimh, Barrister
Aindrias O’ Caoimh, Barrister

Born in Dublin to Shan O’ Cuiv and Hanna O’ Keeffe in October 1912, he was one of six children. His father Shan was born in Macroom, Cork and his Mother Hanna was born in Dunmanway, Co. Cork, he had two brothers Brain and Eamon O’ Cuiv, their father was a Journalist and a writer.  He used the various spellings of his surname the most common he used was O’ Caoimh. He was educated in O’ Connell Schools and UCD and The Kings Inn. He was called to the bar in 1935, he went on to the senior counsel and then a bencher of Kings Inn in 1954. He had developed a close relationship with the Fainna Fail party through his work and through his brother Brain O Cuiv who married Eamon De Valera’s daughter. Under the Fainna Fail government in 1954, 1957-1965 O’ Caoimh served as the attorney general, he was successful on becoming a judge of the Supreme Court in 1965-1966, then president of the high court in 1966-1974 and he proceeded successfully to the post of Judge of the European court of justice 1974-1984.

O Caoimh was at both personally and publically involved in Two of Irelands most prominent legal cases of the mid-twentieth century. They being O’ Caoimh as attorney general represented the government in the litigation of Gerard Lawless versus Ireland. 1957-196, his claim being that he was held without trail in 1957 for offences against the state act at the time of the troubles in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland created an infringement of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. This case placed Ireland before an international tribunal. The court found in favour of the Irish Government that no violation of the European Convention on Human Rights had taken place.

He also presided over Haughey’s arms trail in 1970. O Caoimh was reluctant to take on the case due to his connections to Haughey and the difficulties it would present him with, O’ Caoimh withdrew from the case after a difficult period in court. The case was assigned to a different judge.

He married Sheila Griffith and had with her seven children, He died in Dublin, 1994 and was buried in Glasnevin cemetery.

One of his sons also Aindrias O’ Caoimh born in 1950 was a judge of the High Court for 1999-2004, appointed a member of the European of Justice in 2004. He was called it the Bar in 1972, he was also a lecturer in European Law at the King’s Inns. His term of office as Ireland’s representative in the Court of Justice of the European Union expired on October 6th 2015.


Patricia O Keeffe, Newmarket.