We will get to bottom of report, vows garda chief
Published 31/03/2011 | 05:00
GARDA Commissioner Martin Callinan yesterday pledged that his officers were determined to "get to the bottom" of the implications of the Moriarty Report findings.
He said he was satisfied that a review of the findings, currently being carried out by a small team of officers led by the head of the Criminal Assets Bureau, Det Chief Supt Eugene Corcoran, would be completed "sooner rather than later".
The team would then submit its report to him and a decision would be made on whether the findings warranted a subsequent criminal investigation.
Speaking after opening the ISEC 2011 security conference at the Citywest Convention Centre in Dublin, Mr Callinan said it was important not to "rush the gates" in reaching a conclusion and that he was not anxious to put a timeframe on it.
"I think it's a question of waiting and seeing," he added.
He said the key to the review was the identification of any criminal offences that might potentially exist and when that was completed, the parameters would be narrowed.
The Corcoran review team includes members of the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) and the National Fraud Bureau.
It is thought likely that the review will be competed within a month.
A copy of the Moriarty Report is also being studied in the office of the DPP, while revenue officials within CAB are looking at the tax issues related to the financial affairs of Independent TD Michael Lowry.
In the Dail yesterday, Justice Minister Alan Shatter said TDs had a responsibility not to do or say anything that might undermine or interfere with the role of the gardai or the DPP and prejudice possible future criminal proceedings.
His priority, he said, was to ensure that the criminal law was such that successful prosecutions were possible when offences had been committed and it was not appropriate for him to prejudge such matters.
But he pointed out that many of the reforms recommended by Mr Justice Michael Moriarty already formed part of the Programme for Government.
While Mr Justice Moriarty did not specifically address broader issues concerning the investigation and prosecution of white-collar crime, the programme contained a commitment that anyone who misappropriated or embezzled funds would be properly pursued and the full rigours of the law would apply to them.
Mr Shatter also attacked the criticisms of Mr Justice Moriarty. "We have been well served by our independent judiciary and to imply otherwise, indeed to accuse judges of conspiracy and bias, is entirely unacceptable and wrong," he said.