Still Quashing

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From top: RTÉ penalty points graphic and a screengrab from the Garda Professional Standards Unit’s report published yesterday

You’ll recall how Sgt Maurice McCabe claimed last September that certain gardaí were continuing to cancel penalty points for colleagues, friends and relations, despite assurances from Garda management that the practice no longer took place, particularly since new regulations were introduced on June 16.

The new regulations meant just three senior gardaí could cancel penalty points.

After Sgt McCabe’s claims were reported in The Sunday Times, the Garda Professional Standards Unit [GPSU] was ordered to carry out an investigation into the claims which led to a two-volume report.

Volume One of the report was published yesterday. Volume Two will not be published.

It shows that the GPSU examined 667 cancellation cases.

Of those 667 cases, 54 were quashed after June 16 – the date of change in legislation.

Of those 54, the GPSU says seven need further examination.

But overall, of the 667, the GPSU has concluded that 114 of them need further investigation – a fifth of which concern serving or retired gardai.

Sgt McCabe – though he wasn’t named in the report – he gave the GPSU details of 115 people who had points cancelled between January 1, 2009 to November  1, 2014.

This list included details of 31 serving or retired gardaí who had 289 cancellations. The GPSU requested access to files in relation to these cases between January 1, 2013 and November 1, 2014.

This yielded 239 case files. Of those 239 files, the GPSU did not receive 7 cancellation files. Details of these seven cancellations are in Volume Two of the report which has not been published.

In the report, the GPSU writes:

“GPSU examined these cancellations with information available from PULSE and FCPS [Fixed Charge Processing System] and have assessed them as ‘Further Investigation Required’. “

Last night, RTÉ One’s Prime Time political correspondent Katie Hannon highlighted how the report shows that, by comparing the the months of July and August 2013 with that of 2014, the GPSU shows that the number of penalty point cancellations dropped by 45.

However, as she shows in her graphic, the rate of cancellations actually rose from 3.78% to 3.95%.

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From the GPSU report

As for the reasons that penalty points were cancelled, the biggest reason was that the fixed charge notice went undelivered.

Comparing July and August of 2013 with that of 2014, the GPSU found this reason rose by 91.5%.

The ‘medical emergency’ reason dropped by 99.4%.

Yesterday, Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald announced former president of the Circuit Court, Judge Matthew Deery will oversee the penalty points process in the future.

21 serving or retired gardai face further investigation over penalty points (Irish Examiner)

Read the report in full here

Watch Prime Time here

7 thoughts on “Still Quashing

    1. Soundings

      Absolutely, like getting to the bottom of why they’re so corrupt the CSO won’t accept their crime statistics any more, or why it’s disgusting to whistleblow on corruption but is not disgusting to provide daily briefings to your favorite newspaper giving them a distinct commercial advantage, or why it’s okay to allow a brave whistleblower to continue to be treated like a pariah, or why Gardai have been allowed abandon road safety with dramatic declines in fines handed out, and increasing road fatalities, or why citizens need march on Garda stations to get them to do something about rampant drug dealing.

      But you have to start some place , right?

      1. read twice

        +196
        One Hundred And Ninety Six

        Oh, wait. Mort couldn’t give a f.asterisk.c.k. Mort has bigger fish to fry. Probably deep-fat fried. And breaded. With a large chip. Two movies to watch tonight, after all. An example to us all. Thanks Mort.

  1. Brian S

    Look at the jump in “non delivered by an post” it’s long been known that waiting for a court summons to be delivered by a guard to your house and going to court to tell the judge the original fcpn never arrived at your house is the easiest way to get off points. Signed delivery would obviously plug this huge loophole. But that would be too easy.

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