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Here's what we know about the cases in the garda whistleblower files

The government has said alleged garda misconduct in these cases will be looked into.

Image: Niall Carson/PA Archive

AS THE CONTROVERSIES circling Minister Alan Shatter continue to play out, everyone is dying to know what exactly is contained in the documents handed over to the Taoiseach by Micheál Martin, alleging serious garda misconduct in a number of cases.

Kenny has said action will be taken and Shatter has ordered a review of all correspondence between the garda whisleblower Maurice McCabe and his department.

According to the recently sacked garda confidential recipient, Oliver Connolly, the minister was made aware of the issues around these crimes two years ago, in a complaint by the whistleblower, sent on by Connolly.

In the transcript of a conversation between McCabe and Connolly, the former confidential recipient said:

Shatter would have read your report in detail, I know he did, he communicated with me and he will have read all of your exhibits, which I actually labelled them numbered one to nine in the actual, in the order they were highlighted so he did know. And you know I redacted, the only thing I redacted was your name. Alan studied everything in fact I know he did.

So, what do we already know about these cases?

The one we have most information about relates to the murder of Sylvia Roche Kelly. It has emerged that the man convicted of her murder, Gerry McGrath, had attacked taxi driver Mary Lynch in 2007 and this was not brought to the attention of a judge when he was subsequently convicted of another crime.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Prime Time last night, Lynch said:

He got out of the car and I presumed he was going to pay me through the window, I left down the window but he came, opened the door grabbed my keys and just started going mental. He stood back and started kicking me and then started pulling my hair and he bit me very badly on the shoulder……

“I knew that if he got me out of the car I’d either be raped, murdered or both,” she added.

Five months later, while on bail, he tried to abduct a five-year-old girl.  While in court over the attempted abduction, gardaí failed to raise the fact that he had been on bail for the assault on Lynch.

It was while on bail for this second crime, just two months later, that he murdered Kelly.

The other cases:

  • There are details of three assaults in these files, handed over to the Taoiseach – with one relating to a serious head injury.
  • Another incident involving false imprisonment by a number of suspects was not investigated properly, according to the files, and the victim of this crime was offered compensation on behalf of her captors.
  • Garda whistleblower McCabe also provided information on one case of falsified garda records.
  • Martin has made reference to ‘sexual assault’ when discussing the files, but no further details have emerged.

Today the focus was on whether or not Shatter should be asked to resign but his Cabinet colleagues showed strong support for him. The minister himself is away in Greece but is due to arrive back in Ireland this evening.

It is expected Shatter will make a statement on the events of the last few days on his return but it’s possible he will wait until the Dáil returns next Tuesday.

Read: ‘Alan Shatter is somebody who does a very good job’: Cabinet support for embattled minister>

Read: Not appropriate for Shatter to direct garda dossier review — Sinn Féin>

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