Garda Jobstown review will not examine perjury allegations

A decision on whether Solidarity TD Paul Murphy breached Dáil privilege is due next week

Garda Jobstown review will not examine perjury allegations

File photo of Garda Commissioner Noirín O'Sullivan | Image:

Updated 17:00

The Garda Commissioner has indicated that an internal review into the Jobstown protest will not examine evidence given by Gardaí in court.

Nóirín O'Sullivan said the courts are outside of Garda control and will not be included in the review.

She has refused to comment today on allegations – made under Dáil privilege by Solidarity TD Paul Murphy yesterday – that three gardaí may have been guilty of "co-ordinated perjury" during the Jobstown trial.

She said those claims should be referred to the Garda Ombudsman:

“Assistant Commissioner O’Brien has been appointed to review the circumstances leading from the whole situation in Jobstown,” she said.

“When the totality of the matters before the courts are concluded, obviously that will be there.

“It would be quite inappropriate – at this point – for Assistant Commissioner O’Brien to interfere with matters that are before the courts, however his process will continue.”

Dáil privilege

Meanwhile debate is continuing over whether Deputy Murphy abused Dáil privilege by raising the allegations in the house yesterday.

The Dáil Committee on Procedure and Privileges (CPP) met last night to consider the remarks and has sought legal advice on how to proceed.

The committee is due to meet again next week to consider the advice.

Today Commissioner O’Sullivan said the accusations are criminal in nature and should be referred to the Garda Ombudsman (GSOC).

“Perjury is obviously a very serious matter, it is also a criminal offence," she said.

"If there is anybody who has a suspicion or concern that a member of An Garda Síochána has committed a criminal offence, there is a mechanism there [to address it],” she said.

Suspicious timing

People Before Profit TD and PAC member Bríd Smith said the timing of the inquiry into Deputy Murphy’s comment is suspicious.

“They are using the moment – as we come toward the end of the Dáil term to try and leave a bitter bad taste about Paul with the population.

Fine Gael TD Brendan Griffin, meanwhile, said the parliamentary privilege debate should not distract from what actually happened at the Jobstown protest.

“What I would say about Deputy Murphy is that he did not let himself down as a TD that day – he let himself down as a man,” he said. 

With reporting from Gavan Reilly...