The president of the Students' Union in Maynooth Univeristy has had a case dismissed from court. Leon Diop, 23, was attempting to sue the Luas and the third-party company that provide its security personal for €75,000 over an incident of alleged defamation.
Mr. Diop, who was president of Maynooth's SU this year and was re-elected for a second term for the coming academic year, claimed that he and his brother Adam were racially profiled by security on the tram. He describes the incident, which happened two years ago, as having occurred while they were traveling on the tram and were asked to leave by security personnel despite being in the possession of, and displaying, valid tickets.
Mr. Diop described how there were a group of black youths who had ran to the back of the tram before fleeing due to the arrival of the security personnel. He claims that the security personnel, and indeed other passengers, believed that Mr. Diop and his brother were in the company of these other youths - hence the suspicion of the security personnel. "Just because we're black lads doesn't mean we're with them," Mr. Diop stated to the court.
Despite losing the case, Judge Terence O'Sullivan said that they may reasonably have felt that they were being picked on and made a complaint to the companies concerned in relation to this.
In a Facebook post Mr. Diop wrote to accompany an Irish Times article he shared describing the case, he declared "I am proud of myself for standing up for my brother and I would do it all again if I had to".