Acting Garda Commissioner asks those with breath test evidence to come forward

Dónall Ó Cualáin has appeared before the Oireachtas Justice and Equality Committee

Acting Garda Commissioner asks those with breath test evidence to come forward

Acting Garda Commissioner Donall O Cualain speaking while appearing an Oireachtas Committee | Image: Oireachtas TV

The Acting Garda Commisisoner Dónall Ó Cualáin has challenged anyone with evidence that senior management pressured rank-and-file officers to inflate breath test figures to bring it forward.

Mr Ó Cualáin has appeared before the Oireachtas Justice and Equality Committee.

Committee chairman Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin said: "It has been widely accepted that the breath test scandal where nearly 1.5 million falsified breath tests were recorded on the garda pulse system and the revelation that nearly 15,000 people were wrongly convicted of motoring offences having paid fixed charge notices has damaged the reputation of An Garda and public trust in the organisation."

The committee is also discussing the recent audit of the emergency removal of children from their families by gardaí under Section 12 of the Child Care Act - which was carried out by Dr Geoffrey Shannon, the Special Rapporteur on Child Protection.

It comes ahead of hosting a conference of 300 senior gardaí on Thursday under a theme of internal conflict resolution.

Commissioner Ó Cualáin says his management has sought names and evidence following the accusation from a spokesperson for the Garda Representative Association (GRA).

"We have asked Assistant Commissioner O'Sullivan to go back and seek any evidence and names of people who we can then establish exactly have an evidence trail - and be able to go to those people and get their version of what is being put out there: that management in some way were putting pressure on frontline members".