Garda boss rejects call for culture change
GARDA Commissioner Martin Callinan has rejected claims that his force needed to undergo a culture change.
The damning criticism was made last week by the Garda Ombudsman Commission at a Dail committee meeting. But Mr Callinan, pictured, said that the garda authorities had been co-operating fully with the Ombudsman's investigations. He dismissed suggestions that gardai were running informants "off the books".
The commissioner said all informants were handled according to the regulations and he suggested that if anybody had information to indicate otherwise they should contact the authorities.
One of the three commissioners heading up the Ombudsman's office, Kieran Fitzgerald, said that serious deficiencies remained in the force's management of informants, including poor records and non-adherence to procedures.
The commissioner was commenting at the launch of new guidelines for making victim-impact statements in the courts before a convicted criminal has been sentenced by a judge in cases involving murder or serious sexual or violent crimes.
He said he had no doubt the guidelines would help crime victims and hoped they would go some way to supporting them in what might be difficult circumstances.