Gardai 'ran secret €125k slush fund at training college'
A damning internal Garda report has found serious mismanagement of public funds by the Garda Training College in Templemore, the Sunday Independent can exclusively reveal.
The report, compiled by Garda auditors, discovered a secret €125,000 fund created by staff using taxpayers' money which was used to buy expensive meals in local restaurants and retirement gifts for senior officers.
The revelation will put further pressure on Garda Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan, who is currently the focus of allegations she was involved in a smear campaign against garda whistleblower Maurice McCabe.
Commissioner O'Sullivan has denied any knowledge or involvement in the alleged plot to undermine the whistleblower.
It has also emerged this weekend that Sgt McCabe has been on stress leave from the force since April.
Tanaiste and Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald, who last week established a judge-led inquiry into the smear campaign allegations, is also understood to be aware of the internal audit of the Garda College.
The audit discovered rental income from the leasing of farm land associated with the training facility was held in a bank account linked to the college's restaurant.