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Editor tells Disclosures Tribunal that journalist gave false evidence over McCabe

The Group editor of Associated Newspapers has told the Disclosures Tribunal that the media company believes a journalist with the papers has given untrue evidence, motivated by her grievance against the Mail on Sunday.

Sebastian Hamilton says Alison O’Reilly should have come to him or anyone else in the paper if she had concerns about a story about Maurice McCabe.

Sebastian Hamilton arriving at the Disclosures Tribunal today. Photo: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie.

The Editor of the Mail on Sunday also told the Tribunal he believes his Crime Correspondent Debbie McCann’s likely source on Sgt McCabe’s accuser was a garda.

In 2006, Ms D had accused Maurice McCabe of sexually assaulting her as a child but the DPP said there was no case to answer and even if what was alleged had occurred, it wasn’t an offence.

Debbie McCann tried and failed to get an interview with Ms D in spring 2014 and her editor Conor O’Donnell says the story ended there.

But Daily Mail reporter Alison O’Reilly previously told the tribunal that Ms McCann told her she did get the interview but that Group Editor Sebastian Hamilton didn’t want to run it as he was too cautious.

Debbie McCann, Conor O’Donnell and Sebastian Hamilton all deny Ms O’Reilly’s account.

Conor O'Donnell arriving at the Disclosures Tribunal today. Photo: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie.

Mr Hamilton told the tribunal he thought it was reasonable for the company to say Ms O’Reilly’s evidence was not true and may be motivated by the fact that she has a substantial grievance against the company.

The Tribunal has heard Ms O’Reilly has three legal actions against the Mail on Sunday relating to another matter.

Alison O'Reilly at an earlier sitting

Earlier Mr O’Donnell told the Tribunal that he thought it was likely that Ms McCann got her information about Ms D from a garda source.

- Digital Desk