Written Answers. - Garda Investigations.

Alan Shatter

Question:

859 Mr. Shatter asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform if he has sought to ascertain from the Garda Commissioner the reason no fingerprints were taken following a break-in to the property of a person (details supplied) in County Galway on 25 December 1999; if it is correct that there is no fingerprinting equipment in Clifden Garda station; and if he considers the break-in which occurred was adequately investigated by An Garda Síochána. [19298/00]

I have been informed by the Garda authorities that the incident on 25 December 1999 as referred to in the parliamentary question was fully investigated by the Garda and that a trained "scenes of crime" examiner visited the scene on 25 December 1999. The Garda authorities have indicated that a large section of the roof had been maliciously damaged previously and the roof was left unrepaired. There was considerable rain damage to the interior and no fingerprints were taken because of this. I am further informed by the Garda authorities that there was fingerprint equipment at Clifden Garda station on 25 December 1999.

I understand that a file on the matter was for warded to the Director of Public Prosecutions for directions and that the DPP directed that there should not be a prosecution in this case. As the Deputy will be aware, I have no role in the prosecution of offences and the DPP is independent in the discharge of his functions.