250. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if there are procedures in place under the Garda vetting rules whereby a person with a previous record for offences is not required to be disclosed due to the long period of time when those offences occurred or if they continue permanently on the record and in situations in which the person involved was an adult and the offences were committed in the period 2011 to 2012; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [27737/18]
Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Charles Flanagan): The Deputy will be aware that the primary purpose of Garda vetting for employment purposes is to support protection for children and vulnerable adults. It is carried out by the Garda National Vetting Bureau in accordance with the provisions of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012-2016 and other relevant laws. Neither I nor my Department has any role in the processing of vetting applications.
The Criminal Justice (Spent Convictions and Certain Disclosures) Act 2016 sets out the arrangements in law whereby certain past convictions may not be disclosed and may be regarded as spent. This Act made a series of amendments to the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012 in respect of the arrangements for the disclosure or otherwise of past convictions in the context of the vetting process.
These provisions are applied by the National Vetting Bureau in the context of processing all vetting applications.
Generally speaking, the Act provides that in certain circumstances and in respect of certain offences a person is not obliged to disclose convictions which are over seven years old. I would emphasise that these arrangements are subject to specified limitations and these are detailed in the 2016 Act.