Two armed raids within hours hit west of city
TWO armed robberies within hours of each other in west Dublin have led to calls for armed gardai.
A bookmakers shop in Clonsilla and a cash-in-transit truck delivering money to an annex of Blanchardstown Shopping Centre were both targeted in the latest crime wave.
The bookies' shop was hit as it opened at 9.30am yesterday when a gang broke into it and escaped with a sum of cash.
And in the cash-in-transit heist, a security truck delivering money to the AIB at West End retail park was targeted by a gang believed to be armed with a handgun.
A cash box was taken in the raid, but was later recovered.
There were no reports of injuries in the raids, and no arrests have been made.
It is believed a tracking device in the cash box taken in the cash-in-transit raid helped in its recovery.
Local Fianna Fail councillor David McGuinness has called for armed gardai to be put on patrol in the west Dublin area in the wake of the two robberies.
"These events are happening all too often in our community," Cllr McGuinness told the Herald. "The blatant disregard for the law and for the safety of members of the public needs to be met head-on with a concerted effort by gardai to stop this madness," he said.
"This is the second time in recent weeks that the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre was at the centre of a cash-in-transit raid, which is of particular concern given this is one of the most populated public sites in the country," Cllr McGuinness explained.
On July 20, a cash-in-transit robbery occurred in broad daylight when two men attacked a G4S worker as he was making a cash delivery to an ATM in the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre.
One of the raiders hit the security man over the head with a hammer before escaping with the cash box in a black BMW.
"It is becoming increasingly obvious that a lack of armed gardai leave no deterrent for these faceless thugs," Cllr McGuinness said.
"Garda resources and manpower have been devastated under the current government, and these are the sorts of headlines we will have to become accustomed to unless Minister Shatter realises the crisis this country faces in policing."
"Today was truly a black day for Blanchardstown," Cllr McGuinness added.