Friday 24 November 2017

Varadkar says garda management should 'look into' evidence given by gardaí in the Jobstown trial

Leo Varadkar Photo: Steve Humphreys
Leo Varadkar Photo: Steve Humphreys
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said senior garda management should "look into" evidence given by gardaí in the Jobstown trial, RTE reports.

The trial, which saw six men acquitted on charges of falsely imprisoning former Tanaiste Joan Burton and her advisor Karen O'Connell during a 2014 protest, concluded last week. 

Following the verdict a number of TDs have called for an investigation into a public inquiry into the garda investigation.

Solidarity TD Paul Murphy, who was one of the men on trial, has been leading the call for a review.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has said there are no plans for a public inquiry into the issue, telling the Dáil on Tuesday "it appears to me that Deputy Murphy and his co-defendants got a fair trial".

However, in a new interview with RTE's Prime Time program Mr Varadkar said people need to be able to trust evidence given bygardaí in court.

"People need to trust what the gardai say on the stand and I can understand that perhaps in a scenario whereby lots of things are happening quickly and people are caught up in the heat of the moment, they may have  a recollection that isn't exactly as things happened," he said in a portion of the interview broadcast by RTE on the Six-One news.

"But I would be very concerned if it's the case that we would ever have gardaí on the stand in the court giving evidence that is not in line with the facts, that is not in line, for example, with the video evidence.

"I think there is something there that needs to be looked at by the garda commissioner and by senior garda management because we need to be able to trust that when the gardai stand up in court and they say something happened that that did happen.

"And it shouldn't conflict with the video evidence and if it does that is a problem.

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