Tag Archives: Dave Taylor

From top: Anne Harris; yesterday’s Sunday Times

The Disclosures Tribunal – which is examining allegations of a smear campaign against whistleblower Sgt Maurice McCabe – is to resume next Monday, April 30.

The evidence set to be given over the following couple of months is understood to largely involve journalists and media outlets.

Last June, the tribunal released a statement outlining some details of what certain people had told it at that point.

At the time, the tribunal said the former editor of the Sunday Independent Anne Harris told its investigators:

“In the years 2013 and 2014, matters raised by whistleblower Sergeant Maurice McCabe, such as the termination by senior gardaí of fixed penalty points, as well as allegations of murder and abductions not properly investigated, came to prominence.

From the first instance that the Sunday Independent began to report on these matters, certain journalists came to my office to warn me off Sergeant McCabe.

I was given varying accounts of an alleged case of child sex abuse by him, which was apparently being investigated.

This was repeated several times by a very reputable journalist, one who had shown great courage in exposing incidents of corruption and terrorism. I made enquiries and was satisfied that the matter had been investigated by the DPP, and the complaint found to be without grounds.

“The Sunday Independent continued to report on Sergeant McCabe’s concerns and the consequent treatment of him.

In 2013, the allegation that Sergeant McCabe as a “paedophile” was stated in my office by senior executive from the wider “Group” editorial hierarchy of Independent Newspapers.

“I am certain that a whispering smear campaign was being conducted and that the media were being used.

“The pressure on me was less about publishing the sex abuse allegation – it would have been difficult within the laws of libel – but had the clear purpose of discrediting him, and therefore censoring the issues he was raising.”

Further to this…

In yesterday’s Sunday Times and in relation to Ms Harris’s statement to the tribunal…

Mark Tighe and John Mooney reported:

The INM editorial executive, who still works at one of the group’s newspapers, has told the tribunal that he does not recall making such a comment. He has attacked Harris’s motivation and accused her of being a disgruntled former editor.

…Harris told The Sunday Times she decided to name the editorial executive to Peter Charleton’s inquiry because its investigators had asked her to identify those who had passed on information about McCabe.

“When I subsequently considered the timing of the remark, I actually thought the editorial executive himself might be willing to provide useful information to the tribunal. He made this comment in late 2014. I have never shown any animosity towards this editorial executive. I genuinely thought he might have been willing to help the tribunal,” said Harris.

I believe the protection of journalistic sources is paramount, except when they are being used to detract from a good man’s character. I believe that abuse of journalist privilege inspires no confidence in journalism.”

Meanwhile…

Former Garda press Officer Dave Taylor (left) with former Garda Commissioner Nóirin O’Sullivan in 2014

In yesterday’s Sunday Business Post

Francesca Comyn reported:

“Former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan claims whistleblower David Taylor blamed Nóirín O’Sullivan for having him arrested and said he would “bring her down” because of what she had done to him.

“Callinan has made the claim in a statement to the Disclosures Tribunal. He alleges that after he retired as head of the force in May 2014, Supt Taylor visited him at home on several occasions and expressed anger and disappointment that O’Sullivan, who was commissioner at the time, transferred him from the Garda press office to the traffic division.

“…Billing records from her [former Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan’s] mobile phone will show numerous contacts between her and well-known crime and security journalists between July 2012 and May 2014 when she was deputy commissioner.

“She made 33 phone calls to well-known reporter Paul Williams including conversations lasting up to 20 minutes. The tribunal is expected to ask her to explain ten contacts made with Williams in February, March and April 2014.

“In March that year, Williams wrote two articles after interviewing Ms D, the daughter of the garda who made the sexual allegation against McCabe in 2006, later found by the DPP to be groundless.

“…The former commissioner’s phone records for the same time period show further media contacts. Over the 23-month period, she called RTÉ’s crime correspondent Paul Reynolds 20 times and Tom Brady, security editor with the Irish Independent, 74 times.”

Ex-INM editor Anne Harris was ‘warned’ about whistleblower Maurice McCabe (The Sunday Times, Mark Tighe and John Mooney)

Whistleblower: ‘I will bring her down’ (Sunday Business Post, Francesca Comyn)

Previously: Disclosures And Non-Disclosures

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Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan at a press conference in 2014, and whistleblower Supt Dave Taylor (left) 

This morning.

Sarah Bardon, in The Irish Times, reports:

The Government is to move to establish a commission of investigation into allegations that senior gardaí engaged in an orchestrated campaign to discredit a Garda whistleblower.

The Irish Times understands that retired high court judge Iarlaith O’Neill, who was asked last October to take a look at the allegations and report his findings within weeks, has recommended that further investigation is warranted into claims made by Supt David Taylor.

… In her 10-page submission to Mr O’Neill, seen by The Irish Times, the commissioner denies she was involved in any such campaign against Mr McCabe.

…Ms O’Sullivan told the judge she had an unblemished disciplinary and conduct record that she prided herself on.

New commission to investigate Garda whistleblower claims (Sarah Bardon, The Irish Times)

Meanwhile…

Last December.

Readers may recall how it was reported in The Sunday Times that retired High Court judge Iarfhlaith O’Neill – who has examined the protected disclosures made by Sgt Maurice McCabe and former head of the Garda Press Office Supt Dave Taylor – was given “conflicting accounts from key witnesses” including the Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan.

Mr Justice O’Neill’s review was received by the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald on December 7 but it has not yet been published.

Readers will recall how Supt Taylor has claimed there was an orchestrated campaign, within the gardai, to destroy the reputation of Sgt McCabe.

Supt Taylor has claimed he was following orders from senior gardaí and that both the former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan and the current commissioner Ms O’Sullivan knew about the campaign.

Before Christmas, John Mooney, in The Sunday Times, reported that, as part of his protected disclosure, Mr Taylor claimed he sent a text to Ms O’Sullivan in which he told her a journalist had interviewed a person making allegations about McCabe.

Taylor claims O’Sullivan sent a one-word reply to his text: “perfect”.

In a statement to Mr Justice O’Neill, Ms O’Sullivan denied Taylor’s claims, and said she often responded to texts messages using the word “perfect” or “thanks”.

New row over McCabe ‘smears’ (John Mooney, Sunday Times)

Yesterday: “Legacy Issues”

Leah Farrell/Rollingnews

 

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Former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan and current Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan

Yesterday.

In The Sunday Times.

John Mooney reported on the protected disclosures made by Sgt Maurice McCabe and former head of the Garda Press Office Supt Dave Taylor to the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald.

He reported that retired High Court judge Iarfhlaith O’Neill, who has reviewed the allegations and given a report on the same to Ms Fitzgerald, had been given “conflicting accounts from key witnesses” including the Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan.

Readers will recall how Supt Taylor has claimed that there was an orchestrated campaign, within the gardai, to destroy the reputation of Sgt McCabe.

Supt Taylor has claimed he was following orders from senior gardaí and that both the former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan and the current commissioner Ms O’Sullivan knew about the campaign.

Further to this…

Mr Mooney reported:

A central allegation examined by O’Neill is thought to have concerned a text Taylor says he sent to O’Sullivan informing her a journalist had interviewed a person making allegations about McCabe. Taylor claims O’Sullivan responded to his text with a one-word reply: “perfect”.

In a statement to O’Neill, O’Sullivan vehemently denied Taylor’s claims, and pointed out the large number of text messages she got on various matters. The commissioner acknowledged she often responded to text messages using the word “perfect” or “thanks”, and described these as “perfunctory” replies to the large number of messages she received while a deputy commissioner.

The Sunday Times has learnt O’Neill also approached Callinan about an unsolicited approach he made to John McGuinness, as chairman of the PAC, in advance of McCabe’s appearance at a parliamentary committee.

Details of the meeting, which took place in a hotel car park in 2014, emerged after McGuinness claimed he had been given damaging information about McCabe by the former garda commissioner.

In a two-page letter to O’Neill, Callinan said he regarded media reports on what had transpired at the meeting as “hearsay” and asked that his constitutional rights be protected. The former commissioner also asked O’Neill for a guarantee his legal fees would be discharged.

New row over McCabe ‘smears’ (John Mooney, The Sunday Times)

Rollingnews

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Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan and Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald; Enda Kenny meeting Sgt Maurice McCabe during the local and European elections in May 2014

You may recall the recent protected disclosures made by Garda whistleblowers to the Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald.

They were reportedly sent by Sgt Maurice McCabe and Supt Dave Taylor, former head of the Garda Press Office – with Supt Taylor stating he was instrumental in the campaign to discredit Sgt McCabe.

He’s also claimed both former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan and the current Garda Commissioner Noirin O’Sullivan knew about the campaign.

You may also recall how Ms Fitzgerald appointed Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill to review these disclosures.

Further to this…

Last night, the Ms Fitzgerald released a statement stating she had received the report from Justice O’Neill.

She said:

The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD, today received the Report of Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill of his Review relating to two protected disclosures which were made to her by members of An Garda Síochána in early October.

Mr Justice O’Neill was asked to review the allegations of wrongdoing contained in the disclosures, to make any inquiries with persons or bodies that he considered appropriate in relation to the review and to report to the Tánaiste on the conclusion of the review, including any recommendations which he may consider necessary in relation to any further action which may be appropriate and warranted to address the allegations.

The Report sets out in detail the allegations contained in the protected disclosures. I

n view of the nature of those allegations and the fact that third parties are mentioned the Report is being referred to the Attorney General for her advice on how to proceed, including the question of what material might properly be put in the public domain, having regard to the rights of all concerned.

The Tánaiste is very grateful to Mr Justice O’Neill for carrying out this work so expeditiously and presenting his Report, which will form the basis for ensuring that the protected disclosures are properly addressed.

When the advice from the Attorney General is received, the Tánaiste will bring forward proposals to Government to this end. The Tánaiste is not in a position to make any further comment at this time.

Hmmm.

Statement on the Report of Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O’Neill of his Review relating to two Protected Disclosures (Department of Justice)

Previously: ‘Word Came Down From The Top That He Be Crushed’ 

‘They Tried To Blame Maurice For Everything. It Was Bullshit’

Rollingnews