The Turn Of The Screws

at

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan

Today.

In the Irish Examiner.

Mick Clifford reports that a serving prison officer has made certain claims in a sworn affidavit to the Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan.

The officer has made the affidavit as he has “no confidence in the operation of the Protected Disclosure Act in either the prison service or the Department of Justice”.

News of the affidavit comes a week after a separate prison officer Noel McGree, in an unrelated case, appeared in private before the Public Accounts Committee after he made a protected disclosure two years ago.

Mr Clifford reports that the following claims are in the affidavit:

“Tracking devices were placed on a number of prison service vehicles and in the private cars of prison officers;

The drivers of the prison vehicles, and the prison officers whose private cars were tracked, were unaware of the surveillance…;

Some of these devices remained in place over a long period and intelligence gathered passed onto An Garda Síochána;

Listening devices were placed in the visitor area of one prison to gather information.

These devices were in situ for extended periods. In some instances, these devices were in place when prisoners had conversations with their solicitors;

The private detective agency was employed to install listening and tracking devices in order to shield the prison service from any legal repercussions that would attach if it had been done directly...’

Whistleblower: Tracking devices placed in prison officers’ cars (Mick Clifford, Irish Examiner)

Rollingnews

11 thoughts on “The Turn Of The Screws

  1. Ian-O

    So he told Charlie Flanagan?

    Why? He might as well have told his dog for all the good it would do. Charlie doesn’t do difficult or complex, as best I can tell, Charlie doesn’t seem to do a whole lot or know very much.

    Also, he will, like all FGers, initially and automatically take the side of the state irrespective of the behaviour involved, its really that simple. Based on previous FG responses to whistle blowing, I have no reason to think he would be any different.

    How many FG justice ministers has there been at this stage who stepped down?

    1. ollie

      Leave Charlie out of this. He’s busy workign on a 5 year proejct to collect stats on the prevalence of sexual violence in the State.

  2. ollie

    In some instances, these devices were in place when prisoners had conversations with their solicitors;

    remember the Fennelly Commission? The issue of recording prisoners and solicitors was brought into the public domain then but nothing was done, so it’s not really news.

  3. Jake38

    “…………The drivers of the prison vehicles, and the prison officers whose private cars were tracked, were unaware of the surveillance…;”

    Isn’t that the point of surveillance?

  4. Eoin

    Presumably this all relates to an investigation by the Prison Service into the trafficking of drugs into a prison.

    Does the PS have investigatory powers that extend to placing a tracker on the private car of an employee? Maybe they do, but seems like a major invasion of privacy. Be interested to know the rationale for that. Are Gardai even entitled to place trackers on the cars of suspects?

    How many convos would there be between solicitor and client in the visitor area, don’t they have special rooms for that, otherwise anyone could overhear the conversation.

  5. Bertie blenkinsop

    My Da worked in the Joy.

    One time, during visiting time, the sniffer dog went ballistic at a little skinny inner city lad who was paying a visit (And presumably carrying drugs)

    As they dragged him to search him he shouted indignantly
    “tha’ bleedin’ dog dozen know wha’ he’s talkin’ abouh!”

    Fun times.

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