Fianna Fáil Spokesperson for Justice, Niall Collins TD has called on the Minister for Justice and Equality to establish a Garda Taskforce to deal with a growing number of outstanding warrants. Deputy Collins made the comments after receiving information through a parliamentary question which shows that there are over 115,000 warrants outstanding as of 30th June 2015 in the criminal justice system.
The failure to upgrade Garda technology and the significant cut backs to Garda resources has seriously undermined the Gardaí’s ability to execute warrants.
Deputy Collins stated: “The execution of warrants is the bread and butter of the criminal justice system. The failure to execute over 115,000 warrants as of the 30th June 2015 is a serious threat to our criminal justice system. This is in effect making orders of our courts and the Gardaí totally ineffective. Since I was appointed Fianna Fáil’s Spokesperson for Justice I have continuously pursued this matter with both former Minister Shatter and Minister FitzGerald. There is a great concern out there amongst the judiciary and the Gardaí that if warrants are continuously left without execution it will make a mockery of the whole criminal justice system. Not only that, but law abiding citizens expect the state to provide an effective system of justice in this country.
“The continuous cut back in Garda resources and the failure to implement a new technology upgrade plan for An Garda Síochána has resulted in this huge backlog. I believe the Minister for Justice must now consult with the Garda Commissioner and establish a special Garda Taskforce to deal with the outstanding warrants. If people see that our justice system cannot implement the orders it makes it fundamentally undermines their confidence in that system. This is nothing less than a threat to the criminal justice system overall.”