Oireachtas Joint and Select Committees

Thursday, 8 February 2024

Public Accounts Committee

Financial Statements 2022 - Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission

9:30 am

Mr. Peter Whelan:

We have had some struggles there with the staff numbers but the receipt of the complaint is very quick. If we get any indication from the complaint that it may be a criminal offence, it will be done very quickly because we are on a clock for gathering the evidence. In the first month, if we want to gather things like CCTV footage, we need to process that very quickly. The team picks out what it feels might be a criminal offence and passes it on very quickly then to the investigation staff. It is designated then by a deputy director as an investigation. We have the same powers as police would have to investigate once we have designated a criminal investigation. If it is disciplinary, it may take a bit longer, or if we feel there might not be something and it will not actually be admissible, we would put that lower in the pack. We always have some backlog of admissibility complaints but we are striving to get that number down.