GRA spokesman says members could be corruptible if their pay was reduced
A spokesman for the Garda Representative Association speaking 0n Newstalk’s Lunchtime with Eamon Keane today said young gardai would be more susceptible to bribery if they were paid less. Newstalk don’t podcast their shows so I can’t quote the GRA man directly, his basic argument was “cutting the pay of young guards would make bribes from criminals more tempting.”
The comments were followed up on Newstalk’s drive time show The Right Hook where crime writer Michael Sheridan spoke. Sheridan rightly pointed out that the GRA spokesman’s claim was an insult to young guards. The show’s presenter, George Hook, read various quotes from guards who were pissed off at being accused that their pay was linked to their integrity. Both guests agreed the statement was an attempt to sensationalise the issue of reducing garda pay. It was also said that gardai involved in the Morris Tribunal were of not of low rank. - Gerard Cunningham who covered the Morris tribunal in much depth for various media outlets points out in the comments that gardai found to be corrupt at Morris in fact spanned the ranks…
Nobody pointed out that the opinion of these young guards, who their own official representative has basically said are on the brink of corruptibility, is now accepted as evidence in some areas under the new Criminal Justice Act.
Though they had concerns, the GRA supported the general outline of the aforementioned legislation, though they would have preferred if their members were asked to prepare files detailing their opinion than speak in court.
In 2003 the GRA called claims by Michael McDowell that some gardai were being bribed by journalists “scurrilous”.