I see on this and on othe forums that there is a lot of frustration in relation to licence refusals, moderators being refused, delays etc.
The legislation in relation to the firearms acts does take this into account and there is an appeals procedure in place which allows a matter to be referred to the District Court. I know a lot of people are reluctant to do this but in some circumstances it may be the only option. The following is a brief guide on how to make an appeal, if people wish to do it themselves, which they are perfectly entitled to do. This guide does not purport to be legal advice and if in doubt people should consult a solicitor.
The first step is to file a notice of Appeal. The below is a link to the courts service website where the form can be found and can be cut and pasted into a word document.
Whoever is making the appeal is the appealant and the Chief Superintendent/Superintendent is the respondent. You fill in your details and the details of the Superintendent. The appeal will be pursuant to
section 15A ( b) of the Firearms Act1925 as inserted by Section 43 of the Criminal Justice Act 2006 (if it is a refusal to licence a firearm).
Section 15A can be found here to check the relevant paragraph:
After the form is completed the next step is to take it to your local district court office who will help you fill in the court area and the date on which the case will be heard. They are also generally quite helpful and if you are a lay litigant the court office will normally help you with the completion of some parts of the form, such as names dates etc. You then pay them €23 to stamp the notice of appeal and then you are ready to serve it on the local superintendent.
Service can be effected by leaving a copy in the Garda station in which the superintendent is based. This notifies the Superintendent that you intend to appeal the refusal of the decision and normally there should be no question as to whether or not it has been adequately served. If necessary and if the Superintendent states that he has not been properly served you can make an application to the Judge on the hearing date to have service deemed good and the matter would be put back approximately one month to allow the Superintendent to deal with it. There are always senior Gardai at court and the court can ask them to notify their superintendent.
After service of the Notice of Appeal it then needs to be filed in the District Court office by leaving in the original Notice of Appeal, together with a copy and a declaration of service into the district court office. They will then put the papers in a file for the Judge so that he/she can look at it on the hearing date. A standard form declaration of service can be found at the below link
(the above is for criminal proceedings but the declaration is the same).
After all that you are ready to go and explain your position to the Judge. I see on this and other forums that people are well able to explain why they need a moderator etc. and most judges will listen to the same arguments.
As said earlier the above is a guide and if in doubt contact a solicitor, but I have no doubt that some on this forum are well capable of filling out the forms and arguing their case. Generally the court will give a bit of latitude to a lay litigant and if nothing else the above guide shows that there is a system in place to deal with decisions which people think are harsh and arbitrary.
Hope this is of some help.