Garda blow as three more senior officers to take voluntary retirement

THREE more senior gardaí are due to leave the force early – including the superintendent at one of Dublin’s most high profile stations.

The latest voluntary retirements add to a growing exodus of senior officers from the force and further highlights the mounting loss this year of experienced investigators.

Supt Ray Barry of Store Street Garda Station is due to take early retirement in the next week or two.

He commands the Store Street district, one of the most high profile, and busiest, stations in Dublin. It covers much of the city centre on the north side.

“He is a significant loss to the force generally, but particularly locally,” said one senior Garda source.

He said superintendents at Store Street traditionally got promoted to rank of chief superintendent, such was the status of the position.

It is understood Supt Barry has secured a job in the private sector. He is thought to be in his mid-50s and has served around 35 years.

Gardaí can retire early if they have completed 30 years of service and have reached the age of 50. The compulsory retirement age is 60.

Another district commander due to retire early in the coming weeks is Superintendent Vincent Duggan, 54, based in Macroom district HQ, Cork West Division.

Expected to retire later this year is Supt Joe Delaney, formerly based at Garda HQ. Also in his mid-50s, Supt Delaney is currently serving with the EU policing force in Kosovo.

Both the Association of Garda Superintendents and the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors told the Irish Examiner earlier this month they were very concerned at the rate of retirements.

Factors for leaving include the impact of Government cuts, increased workload, the ban on recruitment and promotions, the pension levy and the threatened tax on retirement lump sums.

Garda Commissioner Fachtna Murphy is due to go to Justice Minister Dermot Ahern next month with a second application list for promotions.

Supt Barry’s position will be on that list. Also expected to be on the list are three other high profile positions: the detective superintendent vacancy in DMR South and two positions of assistant commissioner – in DMR (retirement on age grounds of Al McHugh in September) and the South East division (vacant since June).

In addition, the commissioner is expected to seek the appointment of 20 sergeants to the rank of inspector and more than 150 gardaí to rank of sergeants.

Following a submission by the commissioner, Mr Ahern secured an exemption to the moratorium on promotions last June, with the appointment of 10 superintendents and three chief superintendents.

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