Garda Credit Union takes issue with PAC evidence

St Raphael management says it can release account records only after formal request

St Raphael’s is concerned the PAC will conclude it was frustrating an examination of Garda bank and credit accounts. Photograph: Julien Behal/PA Wire

St Raphael’s is concerned the PAC will conclude it was frustrating an examination of Garda bank and credit accounts. Photograph: Julien Behal/PA Wire

 

The Garda Credit Union has taken issue with statements made at the Public Accounts Committee (PAC), insisting it was prepared to fully co-operate with Garda auditors but needed to follow the correct legal framework.

Management at St Raphael’s Garda Credit Union believes an impression has been given at PAC that account records have been requested by Garda auditors but that the level of co-operation has been less than fulsome.

However, it has written to the chairman of PAC Seán Fleming TD (FF) to point out that it will be comply with any request for information once the requests are made through a legally binding order.

The Irish Times understands that management at St Raphael’s is concerned the PAC will conclude it was frustrating an examination of Garda bank and credit accounts being carried out by the head of the Garda’s internal audit service (GIAS) Niall Kelly.

Fresh correspondence

Earlier this month the committee received fresh correspondence from Mr Kelly which stated his efforts to examine the accounts at St Raphael’s Credit Union in Templemore had been frustrated.

“Despite numerous requests I have not been able to fully access two accounts at St Raphael Credit Union in Templemore and I have not been able to access at least one other account held at St Raphael’s Credit Union, Naas Road, Fox and Geese, Dublin 22,” he said.

Access to accounts – including the identities of the account holders and lodgements and withdrawals made – have been requested as part of an examination of how Garda monies, especially at the Garda College in Templemore, were handled and ultimately spent.

However, management at the Credit Union have now told PAC the records must be sought formally and through legal channels, akin to a search warrant, and that account details cannot simply be surrendered on request.