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Leaders' Questions

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 944 No. 2

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  2 o’clock

Leaders' Questions

Deputy Micheál Martin: Information on Micheál Martin Zoom on Micheál Martin The public is genuinely shocked by the revelations of last week in regard to operational activities by An Garda Síochána, in particular the fact that 146,000 people were wrongly summoned to court for road traffic infringements and, of those, 14,700 received sanctions and convictions. It is a fundamental issue that undermines our criminal justice system, the relationship between our courts and gardaí, and the veracity of what they bring to the courts in terms of evidence.

Second, 1 million breath tests were falsely put up on PULSE. Essentially, in four years 1 million were actually done but gardaí were saying they did 2 million. It is a completely false figure. It is a very serious issue for a number of reasons, a fundamental one being the integrity of An Garda Síochána.

Of course, data and information of this kind informs policy, so the impression is out there that there is constant major attack on drink-driving, and that we are on top of it as we are doing 2 million breath tests, and so on. The reality is far from that, and it is arguable it neutered a policy response in regard to drink-driving. I can recall the former chairman of the Road Safety Authority, Gay Byrne, complaining about the lack of enforcement. Is this the response to the lack of enforcement - to falsify the figures?

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