A massive investigation was continuing last night after three teenage girls reported being victims of savage sex attacks by a number of men.
The Herald can reveal that a manhunt is ongoing in the Kilkenny area for a number of young men who gardai want to question about the shocking alleged attacks.
The incidents are reported to have happened shortly after midnight on Sunday in Courtown Harbour, Co Wexford.
It is alleged that one of the girls was viciously raped while two others were the victims of a sexual assault.
Two of the complainants are 14 years of age and the third is also a teenager. It is believed the girls suffered injuries as a result of the alleged attacks.
Their parents reported to gardai on Sunday morning that their daughters were sexually assaulted.
It is alleged that more than one man was involved in the attacks and gardai were last night trying to make contact with the suspects - who are understood to be based in the Kilkenny city area.
The girls have made official statements to specialist officers.
They have also received treatment in hospital at a sexual assault unit.
credible Senior sources said the teenage girls' claims are being treated as "credible".
The three girls are understood to be originally from Dublin.
The attacks are reported to have happened close to the beach in the north Wexford seaside village.
Yesterday, gardai appealed for information in relation to the shocking case.
"Each of the alleged victims was subjected to a different type of sexual assault," a senior source said last night.
"The alleged victims are fully co-operating with the investigation which is being treated in the most sensitive way," the source added.
"Gardai are investigating an incident of a serious nature that is reported to have occurred on Sunday at approximately 12.15am in the Burrow area of Courtown Harbour, Gorey, Co. Wexford," a spokesman said.
"Gardai are appealing for anyone who may have information, particularly anyone who was in the in the Burrow area between 10pm on Saturday and 2am on Sunday who observed any suspicious behaviour to contact gardai in Gorey on 053 943 0690 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111," said a spokesman.
"Due to the sensitive nature of the incident no further information is currently available.
"Investigations are ongoing," he added.
The area where the alleged attacks happened was sealed off for a number of hours on Sunday while a forensic and technical examination was carried out.
There have been no arrests so far in the case and last night gardai said that they did not have a description of the alleged attackers.
They are seeking CCTV of the reported locations of the alleged attacks.