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Garda whistleblower rejects claim he failed to engage with probe

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Alan Shatter. Photo: Tony Gavin

Alan Shatter. Photo: Tony Gavin

Alan Shatter. Photo: Tony Gavin

A GARDA whistleblower has furiously rejected claims that he did not "cooperate" with an investigation into the quashing of penalty points.

Sgt Maurice McCabe disputed suggestions that he failed to cooperate with the penalty points inquiry, led by Assistant Commissioner John O'Mahony.

Opposition politicians began claiming that Sgt McCabe had never been asked to cooperate with the penalty points investigation.

But gardai insisted that the Garda Commissioner had sent out a directive on December 14, 2012.

However, the new twist came late last night when Sgt McCabe insisted he was "never directed by the Commissioner to co-operate with the O'Mahony investigation as alleged".

"I was never contacted by anyone conducting the O'Mahony investigation which completed its report without making any attempt to speak with me or to seek my input or cooperation into its inquiries," he said in a statement.

Justice Minister Alan Shatter is expected to release a statement on the matter later today.

A number of cabinet ministers have already lined up to express their confidence in the embattled justice minister amid the ongoing Garda whistleblower controversy.

Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore, Communications Minister Pat Rabbitte and Health Minister Dr James Reilly have all backed Mr Shatter ahead of a cabinet meeting today and what is expected to be a challenging Dail session.

COMPLAINTS

Mr Shatter will come under intense opposition pressure to respond to claims that he received information about the alleged mishandling of Garda investigations as far back as January 2012 and failed to act.

The Dail last week heard a catalogue of complaints about alleged Garda mishandling of investigations, including kidnap, murder and rape.

The controversy grew over the weekend with at least four 'whistleblowers' now appearing to be involved.

The original pair of retired Garda John Wilson and Sgt Maurice McCabe were joined by another unnamed man and woman as Fianna Fail and Sinn Fein said more whistleblowers had come forward in recent days.

It has emerged that Sgt McCabe went to the then confidential recipient, Brian McCarthy, back in 2008 with a catalogue of around 20 complaints, most of which related to alleged neglect of duty by fellow officers.

A number of the claims made by Sgt McCabe in 2008 were also included in a dossier given by him to Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin in recent weeks.

The Opposition has been calling for a special inquiry into the latest allegations, with Mr Martin saying that Mr Shatter had known about them since January 2012.

HNEWS@HERALD.IE


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