Sgt Maurice McCabe outside the Disclosures Tribunal this summer
Further to questions being asked about what former Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald and the Department of Justice knew of the legal strategy used by the former Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan and several gardai in the O’Higgins Commission of Investigation in 2015 – in which allegations made by Ms O’Sullivan’s legal counsel were dropped after Sgt McCabe proved them to be false…
And reports of a phone call from Ms O’Sullivan to the then acting Secretary General at the Department of Justice Noel Waters on May 15, 2015 – the same date Sgt McCabe first gave evidence at the O’Higgins Commission which delivered the first blow to Ms O’Sullivan’s legal strategy…
And how within hours of Taoiseach Leo Varadkar saying on Tuesday, during Leaders’ Questions, that he could not be sure if there was such a call or not, Mr Waters announced he’ll be stepping down in February as he is approaching 40 years of service…
And Mr Varadkar saying yesterday that “it’s very hard to answer questions for third parties, or unnamed third parties” but admitted he hasn’t spoken with Mr Waters directly…
Niall O’Connor, on Independent.ie, reports:
Garda Headquarters has directed officers of all ranks to scrutinise their personal email accounts, handwritten notes and laptops for any material relating to Garda whistleblower Sergeant Maurice McCabe.
In an unprecedented move, an assistant commissioner has been appointed to oversee the collation of potentially reams of electronic and written data from gardaí that will then be forwarded to the Disclosures Tribunal.
In a memo sent to all Garda divisions, seen by the Irish Independent, Garda management laid down the diktat ahead of the next phase of the tribunal, which is examining an alleged smear campaign against Sgt McCabe.
The blanket search even includes emails sent from officers’ own personal Gmail accounts.
…The news of the major fishing expedition is believed to stem from previous criticism levelled at management by whistleblower Keith Harrison.
…Gda Harrison is taking separate High Court action against the Garda Commissioner for breaching a court order.
Former commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan was accused of failing to fulfil an order to furnish Gda Harrison with the full Garda file in relation to a personal injury claim.
Acting Garda Commissioner Dónall Ó Cualáin may be forced to appear in court to defend the claim.
Previously: The Legal Strategy Against Maurice McCabe