The Oireachtas Justice Committee has decided to send Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan’s response to 27 questions posed by the committee on controversies regarding breath tests and fixed-charge notices to the Medical Bureau of Road Safety to see if there are any discrepancies.
The committee will later publish a report on the matter and will hold a further meeting after An Garda Síochána issues an interim report on the controversies in a month.
Commissioner O’Sullivan was also asked about other ongoing audits or investigations into other systemic problems in the gardaí.
In her reply she states that An Garda Síochána conducts ongoing inspections and reviews of its processes and procedures.
The commissioner says these are carried out at district, divisional and regional levels and also independently by the garda professional standards unit.
Separately, the garda internal audit unit is responsible for all audits within the force.
She says it is not possible given the time frame (one week) to provide an exhaustive list of all audits and reviews by the internal audit section and garda professional standards unit but this can be sent if required to the committee.
The commissioner also says that in light of previous issues raised in a Garda Inspectorate report and the Central Statistics Office, a working group is overseeing data quality management.
She said gardaí are currently reviewing the classification of incidents including domestic violence and the Policing Authority has been informed.
She says a data quality examination is taking place in relation to homicide incidents recorded on the garda PULSE system and is near completion.
A new data quality unit has also been established and gardaí are working with the CSO to ensure the quality of the data meets international standards.
Commissioner O'Sullivan told the committee that on 10 March, An Garda Síochána received advice from the Director of Public Prosecutions regarding dealing with the appeals regarding wrongful fixed charged notices.
The DPP advised that gardaí could not rely on existing laws and instead the force would have to appeal the cases to the circuit court.
All parties would have to be contacted and their consent obtained to process the appeals.
Also on the same day An Garda Síochána received information from the MBRS that there was a significant discrepancy regarding breath test data.
On whether the figure of 937,000 false breath tests is false, the commissioner says the national examination is ongoing.
It is understood the review by gardaí on how homicides were recorded on the PULSE system relates to cases which may have, for instance, been originally classified as a serious assault, but in the event of the victim dying, the case being upgraded to homicide.
There are around 40 homicides a year.