The Terms of Reference regarding the Commission of Investigation which is to respond to complaints or allegations made against convicted paedophile Bill Kenneally, have been seen by The Munster Express.
Under these terms, 12 separate issues are to be examined by the Commission, and this newspaper felt it appropriate to fully publish them. They are as follows:
A: “To establish the full extent of complaints or allegations of sexual abuse against Bill Kenneally made to An Garda Siochána between 1985 and 1992 (inclusive).”
B: “The extent of the knowledge, or otherwise, of members of An Garda Síochána, serving in the Waterford area of the offences being committed by Bill Kenneally during the time period specified (previously in B). In addition, if further information comes to light regarding the extent of the knowledge held by members of An Garda Síochána (i) prior to 1985, of offences
committed by Bill Kenneally before 1985; or (ii) prior to November 2012, of offences committed by Bill Kenneally after 1992; the Commission shall proceed to investigate the extent of that knowledge.”
C: “To ascertain the nature of the Garda response to any allegations or complaints in relation to, or knowledge of, the offences referred to in term (B) above and whether such response and/or investigation was adequate or appropriate.”
D: “Whether a ‘caution’ was given to Bill Kenneally by An Garda Síochána in 1987, and whether he was formally, or informally, questioned by An Garda Síochána, and whether those actions were an adequate response to the allegations being made against him.”
E: “Whether, following this ‘caution’ or other form of questioning as outlined in term (D) above, in 1987, there was ongoing monitoring of any form of Bill Kenneally by An Garda Síochána stationed in Waterford.”
F: “Whether An Garda Síochána contacted or notified the South Eastern Health Board or Basketball Ireland (or the Irish Basketball Association as it was then known) in relation to the allegations made against Bill Kenneally and if not why not.”
G: “Whether the South Eastern Health Board took any action upon receipt of the information supplied by An Garda Síochána, or any other third party, in 1987, if any, regarding allegations against Bill Kenneally, and whether the action taken was an adequate response.”
H: “Whether Basketball Ireland took any action upon receipt of the information supplied by An Garda Síochána, or any other third party, if any, regarding allegations against Bill Kenneally, and whether the action taken was an adequate response.”
I: “The knowledge, or otherwise, of a member of the clergy related to Bill Kenneally and serving as Monsignor in the Waterford parish, or other members of the clergy, of the offences being committed by Bill Kenneally during the time period specified in Term A, and whether there was any contact between the Garda Síochána in Waterford and the Monsignor; and the nature, purpose and appropriateness of such contact.”
J: “The knowledge, or otherwise, of any political figure or public official of the offences being committed by Bill Kenneally during the time period specified in Term A, and whether there was any contact between the Garda Síochána in Waterford and those political figures or public officials, if any, and the nature, purpose and appropriateness of such contact.”
K: “Whether there was any investigation undertaken by An Garda Síochána in 1992 relating to a B&B in Inchicore, Dublin, where it is alleged Bill Kenneally stayed with young boys on basketball trips, and whether the action taken was an adequate response.”
L: “The adequacy of the Garda Síochána response and investigation in 2012; specifically whether or not all relevant evidence was seized, and appropriately utilised as evidence.”
The Commission is to “have due regard to any criminal prosecution, currently in train or pending, that may be affected by evidence adduced at the Commission”.
Meanwhile the appropriateness of the response of the Gardaí “should be measured by reference to the prevailing standards and guidelines applicable at the time”.
The document, carrying the Government seal, was signed by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar on July 10th.
Speaking in Waterford at the official opening of the expanded Courthouse in April, Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan told reporters: “We are now crossing the ‘t’s and dotting the ‘i’s on the final Terms of Reference. I’m pleased, of course, to discuss the Terms of Reference with the victims. This is a Commission for them and I am anxious that, at the earliest opportunity, Judge (Barry) Hickson can commence his work and that the truth can be uncovered in full…
“However, having considered the matter over the last few months, I’m satisfied that we can proceed and I look forward to proceeding at the earliest opportunity. This is a priority of mine, there is no delay involved here and I look forward to the Commission being established in the next few weeks.”