TWO of the top gardai involved in the Anglo investigation have retired from the force.
Their early retirements highlight the growing crisis facing the force as senior officers leave early before changes to pension arrangements in the new year.
The head of the fraud bureau, Det Chief Supt Martin McLoughlin, retired at the weekend and one of his two superintendents, Pat Collins, has also left the force. Specialist units in the gardai are being badly hit by the exodus, with vacancies also arising in the national drugs unit, the national bureau of criminal investigation and the national immigration bureau.
And there is no indication yet from the Government that promotions will be sanctioned to allow the Garda Commissioner to appoint replacements.
Some gardai were due for retirement on age grounds but others as young as 51 have decided to leave.