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Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald: New Garda Commissioner will be appointed within weeks

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Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD

Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD

Collins Dublin, Gareth Chaney

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald pictured in Govt Buildings.  Photo: Gerry Mooney.

Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald pictured in Govt Buildings. Photo: Gerry Mooney.

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Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald said a new Garda Commissioner will be appointed in early December.

The force has not had a Garda Commissioner since Martin Callinan’s shock departure after a late night visit from the former secretary general from the Department of Justice.

Noirin O’Sullivan is currently the acting commissioner.

Minister Fitzgerald was speaking following the publication of a damning Garda Inspectorate report which found massive failings in the way the force investigates serious crimes.

The minister described the report as a “line in the sand moment” for policing in Ireland.

“The men and women of An Garda Siochana are doing their best but the systems are letting them down,” she added.

She said gardai were not “massaging” crime statistics but rather they were struggling to cope with out-of-date technology.

The Garda Inspectorates report found a force failing to properly investigate crimes due to a lack of resources and the necessary modern technology needed to implement change.

Deficiencies identified in the report included:

• Serious failings in the recording, classification and reclassification of crime incidents.

• Inconsistencies in claiming detections.

• A lack of oversight in the decision-making process.

• Inexperienced gardai investigating serious crimes.

• Inconsistent approach to updating victims of crime.

• Foundation training provided for investigating crime pre-2014 did not adequately equip gardai for the task.

• Lack of IT and equipment to support investigations.

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