THE DEPARTMENT OF Justice has today responded to a report showing Ireland was among 54 countries that helped facilitate the CIA’s rendition programme, asserting that no evidence of rendition has been found in any garda investigations.
The report, published today by the Open Society Justice Initiative said countries involved participated in rendition in various ways including permitting the use of domestic airspace and airports for secret flights transporting detainees.
Responding to a query from TheJournal.ie, the department said:
Complaints concerning allegations that rendition flights were transiting through Shannon Airport have been received from members of the public in the past number of years. These have been the subject of investigation by An Garda Síochána. No evidence of rendition was disclosed in any of the investigations and as a result there were no prosecutions.
The department said all complaints of this nature are dealt with in line with the advice provided by the Attorney General or Director of Public Prosecutions.
“An Garda Síochána are fully committed to investigate all alleged breaches of the criminal law including alleged offences involving the use of aircraft at Shannon Airport,” it said.
The statutory powers of search and entry bestowed on the Garda Siochána may only be exercised in circumstances where a member of An Garda Síochána reasonably suspects that an offence has occurred, the department added.
“The mere assertion of wrongdoing by a member of the general public is clearly insufficient in this regard.”