All-Ireland-winning GAA star investigated for alleged perjury in penalty points case
March 15 2021 01:24 PM
A leading GAA star is being investigated for alleged perjury in a penalty points case.
The All-Ireland winning player was questioned by gardaí last week, Independent.ie understands.
The man in his 20s appeared in court in relation to a road traffic offence.
In the witness box under oath, he said he had not received a fixed penalty notice.
However, gardaí are investigating if he had received the notice and took a photograph of it on his mobile phone before sending it to a garda, asking how to avoid getting points on his licence.
It is believed the garda advised him to say in court that he had not received the notice.
As a result, the player allegedly committed perjury in the district court.
It is common for people facing motoring offences to claim they did not receive a fixed penalty notice in the post.
When this happens, the judge will ask the motorist to swear under oath in the court that they did not get the notice.
Investigating gardaí interviewed the GAA player last week but the player has not been charged with any offence to date.
A file is expected to be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions.
Asked about the investigation, a garda spokesperson said: “This is an ongoing criminal investigation and An Garda Síochána are making no further comment.”
The investigation is part of a wider probe into the failure to prosecute road-traffic offences in the Munster region.
Eight gardaí based in different counties have been suspended and are under criminal investigation on suspicion of not prosecuting road-traffic offences.
The officers have been removed from duty while the Garda National Bureau of Criminal Investigation (GNBCI) carries out its inquiries into allegations of corruption in public office.
Their suspension is part of a major internal and criminal inquiry into ‘squaring’ of penalty points in the Munster area, where fixed-charge penalty notices were not followed through on.
The officers suspended are all of garda rank and are based between two different Garda divisions in the region.
The GNBCI investigation is both a criminal inquiry and an internal probe, with the criminal aspect understood to be focusing on whether there was interference with the administration of justice or attempts to pervert the course of justice.
Two years ago, 14 gardaí were questioned and phones seized, while civilians, including GAA players, were also interviewed.
The alleged non-prosecution of traffic offences emerged after a superintendent’s phone was seized and analysed as part of a separate inquiry into alleged misconduct.