No misconduct in Garda handling of case, Gsoc finds

Woman claimed to Kerry gardaí that a judge had ‘inappropriately’ pursued her

An investigation into the Garda Síochána's handling of a complaint made by a woman about a judge has found that no Garda misconduct occurred, the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission has said.

In the Dáil this week, Rise TD Paul Murphy alleged that the now-retired Kerry District Court judge James O'Connor had grossly abused his position in his dealings with the woman.

Speaking to Taoiseach Micheál Martin, Mr Murphy said Mr O’Connor had “persistently and completely inappropriately” pursued a vulnerable woman who had appeared before him in a family law case for a sexual relationship.

Second woman

“During the summer, I was contacted by another woman, who told me a very similar story relating to the same judge. She too was before him on a family law matter,” he then told the Dáil.

The woman later complained to the Gsoc that a complaint she had made to Kerry gardaí about the judge had not been properly dealt with.

The complaint led to an investigation by Gsoc under section 95 of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 and it concluded that “no misconduct on the part of An Garda Síochána was found to have occurred”, Gsoc said.