The Disclosures Tribunal has accepted the former garda commissioner's Nóirín O'Sullivan's evidence that her instructions to her legal team at the O'Higgins Commission were to consider the interests of all the gardaí before the inquiry and to have the evidence of Sgt McCabe scrutinised.

The tribunal’s third interim report was published this afternoon.

Mr Justice Charleton's report also accepted the evidence of Ms O'Sullivan's legal team that she never suggested that Sgt McCabe's integrity be challenged at the commission.

The report outlines that correspondence forwarded to then minister for justice Frances Fitzgerald about the approach being taken by the garda legal team in May 2015 was noted for information, and that this indicated no action was needed.

Judge Charleton says that the tribunal accepts Ms Fitzgerald's evidence that she did not wish to interfere in the O'Higgins proceedings as an "honest appraisal" of the situation.

The report finds that Ms Fitzgerald and Ms O'Sullivan did not speak about the matter.

The report finds that Frances Fitzgerald and Nóirín O'Sullivan did not speak about the matter