Episode 189: Why did secretive Garda unit destroy data relating to the tracking of Gerry 'The Monk' Hutch?
Nicola Tallant discusses the inner workings of the Garda Siochana and the force’s secretive Crime and Security division
Nicola TallantSunday World
A SENIOR officer from the Garda National Surveillance Unit ordered the destruction of records from a tracker device used on a jeep which, the State claim, Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch and Jonathan Dowdall used to travel to the North before the Regency AK47s were seized.
Former Detective Superintendent Ciaran Hoey said he decided to destroy the records and data in February of this year despite five people, including Dowdall and his father Patrick, facing trial in relation to the murder of David Byrne.
In his evidence, Hoey said he was following guidelines and didn’t believe the records would be of any use in the trial. However, he admitted he didn’t consult the team investigating the murder, the Director of Public Prosecution or the State’s legal team before issuing the destruction order.
Defence counsel for 'The Monk', Brendan Grehan SC, said that he didn’t accept that the data was useless and said that the records could have disclosed the movement of the vehicle in Northern Ireland and when officers knew it had entered a different jurisdiction.
Nicola Tallant chats with Niall Donald about an extraordinary day in the Special Criminal Court when the inner workings of the Garda Siochana was laid bare and when a focus was put on the secretive and aloof Crime and Security division.