- 21 Jul 22
Maebh Quoirin said the case "marks the end of another chapter in the quest for truth."
The parents of French-Irish teenager Nóra Quoirin, whose body was found near a Malaysian jungle resort in 2019, have settled their defamation action against Facebook.
Facebook has expressed sympathy with the family over “distress and trauma” caused by “disturbing and offensive” allegations posted on the social media platform by retired solicitor Anne Brennan.
Declan Doyle SC, for the Quoirins, said the case arose out of material posted by Ms Brennan in 2019 and 2020 which was allegedly "grossly defamatory".
Nóra's Belfast-born mother Meabh and French father Sebastien travelled from the UK for the hearing at the High Court on Wednesday.
The action against Ms Brennan from Castleiney, Templemore, Co Tipperary, and Facebook, now known as Meta, was settled on confidential terms. Ms Brennan was not present in court.
A statement was read to the court on behalf of Facebook by senior counsel Rossa Fanning:
"During what was a distressing time for the Quoirin family in the course of Nóra's disappearance and in the aftermath of her subsequent discovery, a Facebook user posted a series of allegations that were disturbing and offensive to Nóra's parents on the Facebook platform.
"Meta Platforms Ireland Limited appreciates that the user's allegations were distressing to the Quoirin family and takes this opportunity to express its sympathy for the distress and trauma arising from that user's allegations.
"Meta Platforms Ireland Limited will continue its efforts in preventing the misuse of its platform and ensuring the safety of its users."
High Court President David Barniville also expressed his sympathy to the family.
Nóra Quoirin disappeared from her family’s holiday cottage at the Dusun Eco Resoirt, 65km south of Kuala Lumpur, in August 2019.
Her body was found nine days later beside a stream about 2.5km from the resort. A post-mortem examination showed she succumbed to intestinal bleeding due to starvation and stress.
Police said there was no indication she had been abducted. An inquest concluded that the teenager died as a result of misadventure. However, her parents challenged this ruling, indicating that their daughter could not walk off into the jungle alone at night.
Mr and Mrs Quoirin previously said that Nóra was born with holoprosencephaly, a disorder which affects brain development. The couple said that Nóra had poor motor skills, needed help to walk, and her mental age was about five or six.
Speaking after the hearing yesterday, Meabh Quoirin said that the couple would continue their efforts to uncover the full circumstances surrounding their daughter’s death.
“Today marks the end of another chapter in the quest for truth,” she said. “We will continue our efforts in Malaysia in order to bring justice for our beloved Nóra. We wish to thank our legal team for all their support and we won’t be making any further comment on these proceedings.”