Monday 25 September 2017

McCabe claims were straw that broke camel's back

Sergeant Maurice McCabe: his claims were central to Mr Callinan's downfall (Picture: Tom Burke)
Sergeant Maurice McCabe: his claims were central to Mr Callinan's downfall (Picture: Tom Burke)
Philip Ryan

Philip Ryan

Garda whistleblower Maurice McCabe's allegation of misconduct in the Cavan-Monaghan Division was the straw that broke the camel's backs.

After months of garda controversies, Taoiseach Enda Kenny could no longer face down the Opposition and decided to make the then Justice Minister Alan Shatter a sacrificial lamb.

Mr Shatter scraped through previous controversies around quashed penalty points and claims of bugging in the Garda Ombudsman's headquarters.

There was also a Data Protection Commissioner ruling against him over disclosing personal information relating to Independent TD Mick Wallace during an interview on RTÉ.

In fact, Mr Shatter resigned days after the Data Protection Commissioner's ruling was publicised.

Similarly, former Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan had become embroiled in almost two years of justice scandals before he resigned after a late night call from Department of Justice secretary general Brian Purcell.

Sgt McCabe's claims were central to Mr Callinan's downfall.

But it was the secret recording of certain calls in garda stations which ultimately led to his decision to step down as commissioner.

Irish Independent

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