The man has now resigned from the organisation and faces deportation if he does not leave Ireland voluntarily. Eamonn Farrell

Trainee garda faces deportation after investigation exposes his sham marriage

The man is understood to have married an Eastern European woman.

A TRAINEE GARDA who is originally from outside the country has resigned after an investigation by the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) found he was involved in a sham marriage.

Last year An Garda Síochána said it had halted 450 marriages since the introduction of sham marriage legislation in 2015. An operation codenamed Vantage was set up after the legislation was enacted to target this activity.

As part of this operation, investigators recently discovered that a student at the Garda College in Templemore had engaged in a sham marriage to an Eastern European woman.

Following the marriage, he had been granted permission to legally reside in Ireland and later applied to An Garda Síochána during a recruitment campaign.

He had not yet finished his training at the garda college when he was approached by GNIB and has never been involved in any active criminal investigations.

It is understood he was recently interviewed by officers in relation to immigration offences and has now resigned from the organisation. He faces deportation if he does not leave the State voluntarily.

A spokesperson for An Garda Síochána said they do not comment on ongoing investigations.

A sham marriage, also known as a marriage of convenience, is often entered into for immigration purposes and usually involves one of the parties paying a substantial amount of money to the other.

The latest garda figures indicate that almost 1,500 notifications about suspected sham marriages were received in 2015.

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