Leitrim journalist strongly denies being ‘used as a puppet’ by Gardai

Journalist Paul Williams has denied being used as a puppet by senior gardai to smear Maurice McCabe.

The Newstalk presenter who is a native of Ballinamore in county Leitrim wrote a series of articles after meeting Ms D, who made an allegation of abuse against Garda Whistleblower Maurice McCabe.

The Disclosures Tribunal has heard details of the DPP’s decision not to prosecute, which Mr Williams says he didn’t have at the time of writing.

Paul Williams met Ms D in March 2014 after the meeting was organised by Ms D’s father, a garda, and a Superintendent friend of his.

This morning it was put to Mr Williams that he was being used by gardai as a puppet to smear Sergeant Maurice McCabe – a suggestion he vehemently denied.

Mr Williams also said he did not consult with any senior garda before interviewing Ms D, and that he never had any access to a garda file of the investigation.

In 2006, Ms D accused Sergeant McCabe of sexual assault – but the DPP found no basis for prosecution. In a letter read out at the Tribunal, the DPP said even if there wasn’t a doubt as to the credibility of Ms D, the incident described does not constitute a sexual assault, or indeed an assault.

Mr Williams said he hadn’t seen that letter, and wouldn’t have written the articles if he had.