Minister for Justice Alan Shatter has said he failed to complete a breathalyser test some years ago because he is an asthmatic, but that he had not been drinking and committed no offence under the Road Traffic Acts.

Mr Shatter's statement comes after the issue was raised in the Dáil by Independent TD Mattie McGrath.

Mr McGrath asked if Mr Shatter had been stopped by gardaí in early 2011, and whether he had completed a requested breathalyser test.

The minister issued a statement, saying no such incident occurred at the time mentioned.

However, he confirmed that he was stopped, along with other motorists, at a mandatory garda checkpoint in 2008 or 2009.

He said he was unable to fully complete a breathalyser test because he is asthmatic.

When he explained this and that he was coming from the Dáil and had not been drinking, he said he was waved on.

"There was no question of my having consumed any alcohol, nor of my having committed any offence under the Road Traffic Acts," he said.