The outgoing Director of Corporate Enforcement has called for an increase to the length of detention period that police can hold suspects of white collar crime.

Paul Appleby announced his decision to retire last January, but after talks with Government,
agreed to stay on for an additional six months.

Speaking on RTE’s Morning Ireland radio program on his final day in office, the retiring civil servant said it would be helpful if those suspected of corporate criminal behavior could be detained for more than 24 hours.

Appleby described the detention period as a “very challenging time-frame” for investigators.

The 58-year-old has served as the head of the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement for over 10 years. He told the radio program that the investigation into the now defunct Anglo Irish Bank was complete from the perspective of their office and that all files have been sent to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Commenting on the investigation, he said he was confident that the office ran a professional and robust investigation.

“I think we have taken the right approach. We have been methodical, we have gone at it very carefully. It has been useful and welcome that we have got some decisions out of the DPP in the recent past. Hopefully there will be some more decisions to follow.”

Appleby said he thinks over the past decade there is a much greater appreciation in Ireland for the “need to be a good corporate citizen”.

“A lot of companies spend time and effort making sure they are legally compliant,” he added.

His successor Ian Drennan, the head of the State's auditing watchdog, takes over on Wednesday.

Outgoing Director of Corporate Enforcement, Paul ApplebyIrish Times