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Question

102. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of outstanding bench warrants by Garda division; and his plans to address this matter. [16940/19]

Answer

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): As the Deputy will appreciate, difficulties in relation to the execution of warrants, including bench warrants, are a long-standing issue for many police forces around the world; notably relating to persons actively seeking to evade detection and where limited identification information might be available to support enforcement.  These difficulties are compounded where the warrant has been outstanding for some years.  However, I am assured that An Garda Síochána execute warrants as expeditiously as possible, giving priority to the execution of warrants relating to serious crimes.
The Deputy will also appreciate that the figure for outstanding bench warrants recorded by PULSE at any given time reflects an accumulation of old bench warrants which has arisen over the years and that therefore the total figure for outstanding bench warrants as shown on PULSE may not be a reliable indicator of the number of 'live' warrants which are actually enforceable.
While it is important to note that an individual can be the subject of multiple bench warrants, I am advised by the Garda authorities that, as of 10 April 2019, there are 37,797 bench warrants outstanding nationally.  The attached table provides a breakdown of bench warrants outstanding by Garda Division. 

Region Garda Division Number
Dublin Metropolitan Region (DMR) DMR East 959
DMR North Central 6,267
DMR North 4,487
DMR South Central 2,275
DMR South 3,516
DMR West 5,677
DMR TRFC 33
Eastern Region Kildare 960
Laois/Offaly 317
Meath 630
Westmeath 655
Wicklow 718
Northern Region Cavan/Monaghan 863
Donegal 672
Louth 693
Sligo/Leitrim 317
South Eastern Region Kilkenny/Carlow 948
Tipperary 858
Waterford 515
Wexford 618
Southern Region Cork City 1,209
Cork North 420
Cork West 170
Kerry 608
Limerick 1,466
Western Region Clare 313
Galway 1,071
Mayo 279
Roscommon/Longford 283
Total Nationally 37,797


*Operation figures from Pulse and are accurate as of 10 April 2019 and liable to change.