Harney: I was never influenced by names raised in Ansbacher investigation

Mary Harney has denied claims that she cancelled an internal investigation into tax evasion because it had raised allegations against one of her party colleagues.

Harney: I was never influenced by names raised in Ansbacher investigation

Mary Harney has denied claims that she cancelled an internal investigation into tax evasion because it had raised allegations against one of her party colleagues.

The former Progressive Democrats leader says she is happy with how she handled the internal investigation - and denied allegations made in the Dáil yesterday.

Yesterday, under Dáil privilege,

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Yesterday Mr O'Malley denied having an offshore account at Ansbacher Bank, and now Mary Harney herself has also denied the allegations.

In a statement last night she said that "at no point" were her actions influenced by any of the names being encountered by the civil servant running the investigation.

"I made it clear, regardless of who might have been involved, it had to be investigated correctly and thoroughly," she said.

"Throughout the seven years of the investigation I supported the Authorised Officer in his role."

Mary Harney says the Department's inquiry was only ever designed to begin the process before a full investigation by the appropriate authorities.

She also says she defended the length of that inquiry - which had been running for seven years before she shut it down and asked for the evidence to be passed on.

She also said that she gave the civil servant more time than he had asked for to finish the inquiry - and only ordered him to end it two months after he was due to have done so himself.

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