Lawyers among Policing Authority nominees

Shalom Binchy and Elaine Byrne
Shalom Binchy
and Elaine Byrne

Four people, including a solicitor and a barrister, have been nominated by ministers for appointment to the Policing Authority.

Shalom Binchy, Elaine Byrne, Dr Donal de Buitléir and Stephen Martin are set to fill the four vacancies on the nine-member watchdog body.

Ms Binchy has more than 23 years’ experience as a criminal defence solicitor. She founded her own firm, Shalom Binchy & Co Solicitors, in 2002, which recently merged with Sheehan and Partners Solicitors.

Ms Byrne is a practising barrister, journalist, author and former lecturer in law and political science.

Dr de Buitléir has experience in the public and private sector, including at a senior level in Revenue and AIB. He has served as president of the Statistical and Social Inquiry Society of Ireland and is a past chairman of the Foundation for Fiscal Studies.

Mr Martin is a former PSNI officer who retired as deputy chief constable last year.

Commenting on the nominations, Justice Minister Helen McEntee said: “I am delighted to be nominating four such eminent candidates for appointment to the Policing Authority.

“The four nominees will bring a breadth of skills, knowledge and experience to their roles and ensure the continuing effectiveness of the Authority in supporting excellent policing through effective oversight of An Garda Síochána. My Department will now arrange for the necessary resolutions to be moved in the Oireachtas recommending their appointment.

“These appointments arise following the expiration of the term of office of members of the Authority and I would also like to express my gratitude to Pat Costello, Dr Vicky Conway and Judith Gillespie, for their diligence and commitment throughout their term of office.”

The government is currently working on a new Policing and Community Safety Bill which will eventually provide for a new Policing and Community Safety Authority, replacing both the existing Policing Authority and Garda Síochána Inspectorate.

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