Monday 26 September 2016

Woman arrested after 'producing fake sick certs at work'

Ken Foy

Published 18/09/2015 | 13:28

Gardai (Stock image)
Gardai (Stock image)

A civilian employee who works for the gardai has been arrested after allegedly producing fake sick certs at work.

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Gardai have conducted a lengthy investigation into the case and a file is almost ready to be sent to the DPP.

As part of the long-running probe, gardai have also investigated the role that a GP has played in the alleged incidents, but this doctor has not been arrested.

History

If a prosecution does happen, it is understood that it will be the first time in the history of the State that an employee will be hauled before the courts for allegedly providing fake sick notes to their employers.

The woman had worked at a Dublin garda station in a civilian capacity, but it came to the attention of officers in the same station that, on a number of occasions, she had been producing medical certs to her superiors when it is alleged that she had not been sick.

The woman has not been suspended from duty since her arrest.

"This happened a number of times. She was putting in sick certs for days that it is suspected that she was not sick at all.

"The issue here is that this is the alleged fraudulent use of medical certificates over a period of time.

"A pattern emerged and this is what led to the garda investigation, which is in its closing stages. This was not a case of just one or two incidents," a source said.

"The investigation has been ongoing for almost a year now and the employee was arrested a number of months ago.

"This is being investigated as a fraud-related matter," the source added.

Scam

A previous garda probe was launched in 2008 when an investigation was opened into a controversial website which advertises fake sick notes for just €30 which could be used to scam unsuspecting employers and insurance firms. That website is still operating.

A disclaimer on the website states that the documents should only be used for novelty purposes, adding that "the customer will accept full responsibility for their actions which involves the use of our products".

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