Garda preparing file on Avondale

A FILE on Avondale Nursing Home is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions amid allegations of theft from residents and their families.

A FILE on Avondale Nursing Home is being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions amid allegations of theft from residents and their families.

Gardai have spoken to a number of people and have confirmed that there are ‘still people’ to be spoken to as part of the overall investigation.

“If there is anyone who has concerns that they feel merit discussion or information then they should contact us,” a senior garda spokesman said. He also confirmated that investigations are ongoing and that a number of lines of enquiry are being examined.

Controversy surrounds the nursing home which was closed last month. Allegations of theft are being investigated and it is believed that the directors of the nursing home Miriam and her daughter Hayley are now living in Australia.

In June two women won cases for unfair dismissal at the Employment Appeals Tribunal and will be awarded damages over the coming weeks. SIPTU has confirmed that there are at least five similar cases pending from former employees who allege that they were forced out of their jobs.

HIQA said at the start of August that it is considering whether to prosecute Miriam and Hayley Holmes - the two listed directors of the nursing home - for breaching regulations in the 2007 Health Act.

Under the terms of the 2007 Health Act, the owners of a nursing home found guilty of failing to discharge their duty of care to residents can, on summary conviction in the District Court, face a fine of up to €5,000 or imprisonment for up to a year. If convicted on indictment in a higher court, the penalties can include a fine of up to €70,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years, or both.

Anyone with further information is asked to contact Kilkenny Gardai on 056-7775000