Coming Forward


From left: Conor Brady; Judge Peter Charleton

During the Disclosures Tribunal, Judge Peter Charleton repeatedly called out for journalists, or anyone else, with any knowledge of any smear campaign against Sgt Maurice McCabe to come forward and make it known to the tribunal.

The judge made a specific appeal after editor of The Irish Mirror John Kierans gave evidence, and told how it was his understanding that former Garda Press Officer Supt Dave Taylor had “peddled” the story about Sgt McCabe and Ms D to various newsrooms in Dublin in early 2014.

Judge Charleton said:

“I would be grateful if the message would go forth through whatever media are present in the room, there is actually a duty on people who actually know something about this to come forward.

“I made that plea back in February 2017, and here is yet another variation of people not coming forward, perhaps, perhaps suppressing matters, here is a view being expressed in relation to a situation where an individual has completely waived their privilege.

“If people say they have a privilege but they know something, I would much rather know that, than for them to simply, if it is the case, sit in their office blocks and not come to the Tribunal and not communicate. There is a website. You can communicate. There is a phone line. It is manned. It will be manned indeed all day on Saturday.

“This matter is coming close to an end. And I regard it as not a legal obligation, but much, much more serious than that: a patriotic obligation of people who know something to come forward so that the people of Ireland aren’t left in the daft situation that people who know things in the journalistic profession have not come forward to speak, but, nonetheless, will be able to write articles about what happened to them in the aftermath of the Tribunal report appearing.

“Now, in the event that that happens, the people of Ireland will no doubt take their own view as to the credibility of the persons who do that and that may indeed cause damage to the media outlets who may be involved in this, and I don’t know if they are or not, much worse than any libel action on earth; in other words, people simply stop trusting journalists.

“And it is important that they do, because journalists fulfil an extremely important function within our society and one which personally I value very highly.”


In yesterday’s The Sunday Times

Former Garda Ombudsman Conor Brady, in an opinion piece about An Garda Síochána, wrote:

Many gardai passed on the word to whoever would listen that McCabe was a “bad one”. A businessman friend of mine was told this by a superintendent on the golf course.

One senior official solemnly assured me, in the company of others, that there was a “whole other side” to McCabe.

Mr Brady did not appear as a witness at the Disclosures Tribunal.

Conor Brady: The Maurice McCabe saga goes beyond a morality tale (The Sunday Times)

Earlier: Bryan Wall: Vinidcation At The Expense Of Justice


In a statement to Broadsheet, a spokesman for the Disclosures Tribunal said:

‘The  tribunal  wishes to advise, Mr Brady never contacted the tribunal and or/gave us a statement and we were not aware of this information.

Mr Brady was never mentioned to us as a journalist we should pursue. He did however, have a GSOC involvement – he was a member of the board from 2005 to 2011.

The tribunal has no further comment to make.’

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6 thoughts on “Coming Forward

  1. Catherine costelloe

    The fact Conor Brady didn’t appear at the Tribunal isn’t proof that he didn’t contact the Tribunal?

  2. Eoin

    I thought Mr Brady had appeared before the tribunal, but I see it was the Independent journalist Tom Brady who appeared. The above piece is about Conor Brady.

    Forgive my dimness but Bodger above is drawing attention to (1) Judge Charleton’s call to journalists and others with knowledge of any smearing of Sgt McCabe to come forward and (2) Conor Brady not coming forward, but then using the platform of a Sunday newspaper yesterday to reveal tidbits that, on the face of it, look relevant to Judge Charleton’s now finished inquiry?

    Conor Brady, apart from being a former ombudsman, is a former editor of the Irish Times and he was a member of the Policing Authority until his sudden resignation in September 2017, citing lack of government support. I would have expected more of him, in terms of cooperation with the Charleton tribunal, given the esteem with which he’s held in official circles.

  3. Catherine costelloe

    This is what Mr Conor Brady said to Michael Clifford in 2014 about Maurice Mc Cabe. “He’s an impressive guy. A serious man who should be listened to”
    This is reported in “Force for Justice”. Mr Brady reported same on This Week on RTE radio some days later apparently. It is possible as he was formerly GSOC he was unable to give evidence at Charleton tribunal?

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