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Imprisoned Ivor moved to medical unit

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Ivor Callely. Photo: Collins Courts

Ivor Callely. Photo: Collins Courts

Ivor Callely. Photo: Collins Courts

JAILED politician Ivor Callely was transferred to the medical unit of Mountjoy prison.

Prison staff expressed concern for the wellbeing of Callely (56), who began a five-month sentence for expenses fraud on Monday.

Normally, this sort of monitoring is only conducted for the first 24 hours of a person's sentence.

The former junior minister appeared "withdrawn" and "quiet" in his first few days of prison life, according to a source.

Callely is currently under observation by medical staff and is being kept in a single cell away from the rest of the prison population.

A prison source said the move on Wednesday night was a "precautionary measure".

"For someone like Callely, who has no history of imprisonment, it can be a significant shock," they said.

Prison authorities had planned to move Callely to Wheatfield prison in west Dublin earlier this week. This move will still go ahead at some point, but not before staff become satisfied Callely is fit to be transferred.

The former Fianna Fail TD and senator will have to share a cell when he is moved to Wheatfield.

Callely was visited in prison by a lawyer the day after he was sentenced.

Severity

He was jailed at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court after pleading guilty to four counts of using invoices believing them to be false instruments between November 2007 and December 2009 while he was a member of the Seanad.

The invoices were used to claim over €4,000 worth of expenses under a mobile phone reimbursement scheme open to members of the Oireachtas. Some of the bogus invoices used were from businesses which no longer existed.

Callely withdrew five of six claims he submitted and paid back most of the money after a journalist sought details of the payments in a freedom of information request in 2011.

However, gardai launched an investigation the following year.

Callely denied any wrongdoing when taken into custody. He only admitted to submitting bogus expenses when the case came to court.

He served as a junior minister between 2002 and 2005. After losing his Dail seat in 2007, he was appointed to the Seanad by then Taoiseach Bertie Ahern.

hnews@herald.ie


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