442. Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if any of the complaints submitted to the independent review mechanism had already been referred to the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission; and if so, if they are still being reviewed by the Independent Review Mechanism. [34604/15]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): The Deputy is referring to the mechanism established for the independent review of certain allegations of Garda misconduct, or inadequacies in the investigation of certain allegations, which have been made to me as Minister for Justice and Equality, or the Taoiseach. A panel consisting of two Senior and five Junior Counsel was established for the purpose, all selected on the basis of their experience of the criminal justice system.
The Panel has provided recommendations to me in all 320 cases submitted to them and has therefore largely concluded its work. I have already written to 152 complainants and expect to be in a position to bring the process to a conclusion shortly. A number of the complaints submitted to the Independent Review Mechanism had already been considered, in whole or in part, by the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC). Of itself, this did not preclude the Panel from considering the complaint and making a recommendation to me (while respecting the independence of GSOC).