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SIPO probe into Ivor Callely's mobile phone claims discontinued

File on Callely gone to DPP as Standards in Public Office Commission finishes investigation into former senator’s phone expenses claim.

PA Images/Niall Carson
PA Images/Niall Carson

THE STANDARDS IN Public Office Commission has wrapped up its investigation into whether Ivor Callely had committed an offence relating to his duties as a senator.

The decision as a result of Callely ceasing to be a member of the Seanad on 25 April as the Seanad election count began. A statement from the Commission read:

Accordingly, the Standards Commission no longer has jurisdiction in the matter and its investigation has been discontinued.

The Commission became involved in Callely’s activities as a member of Seanad Eireann after the Seanad Select Committee on Members’ Interests asked it to explore two complaints that Callely had made inaccurate claims for mobile phones under a direct purchase scheme. An inquiry officer undertook a preliminary investigation under Section 6 of the Standards in Public Office Act 2001 in relation to the complaints.

The findings in that report to the Commission, which was discussed at its 11 April meeting, led the independent body to “form the opinion that Senator Callely may have committed an offence relating to the performance of his functions as a member”.

The Commission says it has sent a report to the Director of Public Prosecutions as required by the Ethics in Public Office Act 1995 but that its own involvement has now ended.

The High Court ruled at the end of January that Callely be paid almost €17,000 for loss of earnings over a 20-day suspension from the Seanad on another matter. He had been suspended while the Seanad Committee on Members’ Interests investigated whether he had acted inappropriately in claiming travel expenses from an address in Cork.

Ivor demands time for personal statement about his expenses at last Seanad meeting>

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